Preview and Prediction: Clemson at NC State


Clemson Head Coach Dabo Swinney will attempt to pass College Football Hall of Famer Frank Howard for sole possession of Clemson’s all-time head coaching wins record on Saturday, Oct. 28, when his Tigers face the NC State Wolfpack. Kickoff at CarterFinley Stadium in Raleigh, N.C., is scheduled for 2 p.m. ET.

Saturday’s contest will feature two head coaches each attempting to rewrite his respective school’s record book. While Swinney will attempt to earn his 166th career victory as head coach of the Tigers to pass Howard for sole possession of the most career head coaching wins at Clemson, conversely, NC State Head Coach Dave Doeren (76) enters the game one victory shy of tying Earle Edwards (77) as the winningest coach in Wolfpack history.

Swinney is 8-1 all-time against Doeren with all meetings coming during Doeren’s tenure at NC State. Presently, Doeren is one of only two head coaches to be defeated by Swinney eight times, joining Wake Forest’s Dave Clawson, whom Swinney defeated for the 10th time earlier this month.


Head Coach Dabo Swinney attempting to earn his 166th career win to pass College Football Hall of Famer Frank Howard (165 from 1940-69) for sole possession of the Clemson record for career head coaching wins.

– Swinney attempting to match the career win total of College Football Hall of Famer Red Blaik, who won 166 games at Dartmouth and Army from 1934-58. Swinney’s .797 win percentage is already ahead of Blaik’s .759.

Clemson attempting to improve to 34-8 in games following a loss under Swinney, including season openers following a loss in the previous season finale.

– Clemson entering the game having not lost back-to-back games in the same season since November 2011, the nation’s longest such streak.


Zach: Everyone knows that these two teams don’t like each other, and even more so these two head coaches don’t like each other. However, the fact that these two teams don’t like one another has zero bearing on the outcome of the game, as the fumble prone Tigers head north to take on the offensively anemic Wolfpack in the Textile Bowl, also known as the First Team to 13 Wins Bowl. Honestly, who knows which Tiger team is going to show up, which offensive line will show up, which Will Shipley will show up and which healthy wide receivers will show up. Honestly, this game could be played at 9 am on the Food Network and draw as much interest as it will on the CW–except the fans of Pioneer Woman would be upset. I don’t feel good about either team, but I will take the Tigers to get off the slide.

Clemson 24, NC State 13

Brad: It’s hard to have a lot of faith in Clemson’s offense right now. The turnovers, red-zone issues, and poor offensive line play could spell disaster on the road. The Tigers are also banged up on both sides of the ball, and Cade Klubnik has the pressure of making up for last week’s bad decision on the goal line at Miami. NC State has a defensive front that’s produced the most sacks in the ACC, but the Wolfpack really struggle to score, ranking 10th in the league at 25.4 points per game. Luckily for the Tigers, defense travels.

Clemson 17, NC State 10

Jason: At this point, I have zero faith in the Clemson offense, especially up front. And this week they go on the road to face an NC State team that can get after the quarterback. Fortunately, this NC State offense isn’t very good either. They’ve managed just 13 points total in their last two games against ACC competition. The Tigers’ offense does just enough and this week the defense doesn’t falter late.

Clemson 17, NC State 6

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments