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On3 identifies Clemson and Florida State as the only ACC legitimate College Football Playoff contenders

As college football teams prepare for the upcoming 2024 season, they’re busy recruiting new players and looking at transfers to strengthen their squads.

One team, the Clemson Tigers, is known for their history in the College Football Playoff era. They’re aiming high for the upcoming season, hoping to make it to the College Football Playoff. To do that, they need to play really well in 2024. That might mean winning the ACC Championship to secure a playoff spot, or getting picked as one of the best teams overall.

This year, the playoffs are bigger, with 12 teams instead of just a few. This is a big deal for college football because it gives more teams, like Clemson, a better chance to show what they’ve got and maybe even make it to the playoffs.

On3 recently evaluated the legitimate College Football Playoff contenders in the ACC, with Clemson and Florida State being the two schools mentioned.

“Let’s talk about the ACC and the Big 12 because we’ve only mentioned SEC and Big Ten teams so far,” Andy Staples said. “The supposition is that the national champ will come from one of those two leagues. Perfectly understandable. I think the ACC and the Big 12 are different in this respect, because in the ACC I do think Florida State and Clemson can do this.”

“They can be deep enough. I worry about Clemson for the same reason you do, I don’t think their roster is as efficiently built as everybody else’s because Dabo [Swinney] doesn’t use the Transfer Portal. Florida State is a more efficient roster. It may not have as much top-end talent that you signed out of high school, but they probably have a more functionally talented roster because they’ve been evaluating as they go and changing pieces as they go.”

Once again, it is the transfer portal that people are bringing up with the Tigers, which is understandable when comparing Clemson’s complete roster to others. While some are filling holes in the portal, the Tigers are doing it in recruiting.

That doesn’t mean the roster won’t be complete… if the Tigers hit on their recruits and the outstanding 2023 class continues to develop, Clemson could be a powerhouse in the ACC. It will be interesting to see how they and Florida State compete in 2024 with how differently they’ve built there squads.

Last season, Florida State proved that fully utilizing the transfer portal can work. This season, it’s Clemson’s turn to prove that you can still be elite solely through recruiting.

Story originally appeared on Clemson Wire