Unlike other college football rivalries the rivalry between Clemson and South Carolina runs much deeper than the gridiron. The two schools were founded 88 years apart as Clemson was founded in order to satisfy the agrarian movement’s request for more agricultural education after South Carolina refused to expand their agriculture program. On the field the two teams play in the longest uninterrupted series as the two teams first met in 1896 when the Gamecocks beat the Tigers 12-6. The Tigers have dominated the series since holding a 66-42-4 all-time lead. Clemson will try to extend their lead in the series and their current one game winning streak when the two schools play this year.
The Tigers and Yellow Jackets rivalry began in 1898 when Clemson shutout Georgia Tech 23-0. Since then Tech has owned the rivalry racking up a 50-27-2 all-time record against the Tigers. The two schools have met every year since 1983, often deciding the ACC champion. The Tigers will look to narrow the gap this season when the two teams meet.
Each year Clemson and NC State bud heads in what is colloquially known as the Textile Bowl. The nickname comes from the fact that these two universities have the two largest textile programs in the world. The textile industry also has a strong historical significance in both of the school’s states. Clemson won the first meeting 24-0 and have held the upper hand in the rivalry ever since as they hold a 54-28-1 all-time lead in the series.The Tigers will look to extend their lead in the all-time series when these two meet this season.
Clemson and Boston College are relatively new rivals as the two did not meet yearly until 2005 when BC entered the ACC. The rivalry has gotten more intense over the years though as in 2008 the O’Rourke-McFadden Trophy was introduced. The two schools first met in 1940 when Clemson beat Boston College 6-3 in the Cotton Bowl. The Tigers hold a slender 13-9-2 lead all-time and hope to increase that lead in the coming years.
Clemson and Georgia first played in 1897 when the Bulldogs shutout the Tigers 24-0 in Athens. The two schools play intermittently currently, however they played each other each year from 1897 to 1916 and 1962 to 1987. The Bulldogs lead the all-time series 42-18-14, but the Tigers will try to narrow the gap in the next few years.
The food at Clemson is second to none as you’ll see a wide variety of food ranging from KFC to entire pig roasts. The fans here are very friendly and observe Southern hospitality making a Clemson tailgate one big party where everyone is welcome. Bring some beers and some barbeque and you’ll make friends quickly.
It’s not just the food and fans that makes tailgating at Clemson such a treat for diehard football fans. You’ll find there is a ton of Clemson pride and passion on display when tailgating here as well. Upon arrival you’ll be greeted by a sea of orange and purple, as everyone shows up decked out head to toe in Clemson gear.
If you’re going to be in town for the first game of the season come a day early, so you can be part of the festivities. The annual First Friday Parade before the first game of the year kicks off the Clemson football season. The parade runs down main street until it reaches the Amphitheater and features a variety of floats representing different student groups at Clemson.
Starting on the Thursday before The Palmetto Bowl, ROTC members bang on a garnet and black oil drum until there is nothing left. Make sure to listen for the sound of the drum when attending the Clemson-South Carolina game.
The Graveyard is the special way that Clemson commemorates road victories over ranked opponents. Whenever the Tigers beat a ranked opponent on the road they add a tombstone to the victory graveyard, which is located at the entrance to the team’s practice facility. If you get to the game early make sure to check this one of a kind monument out.
Reserved Parking LotsPerfect for setting up your own tailgate featuring beer, food, grills, and music. Make sure to reserve your spot and join in on the great tailgating you’ll find at Clemson.
The QuadIf you’re looking for the wildest place to tailgate checkout the quad where you’ll find the Frats and plenty of outrageous pregame parties. Those of you who love to let lose and get rowdy will no doubt have an incredible time tailgating on The Quad.
Tigers Stadium Guide
Clemson fans are some of the loudest in the country. In fact they even set the record for loudest stadium in 2007 when the noise level at Memorial Stadium was recorded at 133 decibels. If you’re going to a Tigers game be prepared to get loud and support your team.
Not only do the fans here create a tremendous atmosphere, but the history and tradition of Death Valley also helps to create the unique feel of a Clemson football game. The Tigers have won 227 games at Memorial Stadium over the last 63 years including an undefeated national championship season in 1981. The fans and history here create an atmosphere that is second to none, so if you want to experience something special Clemson is the place to be.
Before every game Tigers players rub the rock as they run down the hill for good luck. The tradition started in 1966 when IPTAY director Gene Willimon was instructed by legendary coach Frank Howard to get rid of the rock, which had been given to Howard by his friend Samuel Columbus Jones who found it in Death Valley, California. Willimon mounted the rock at the top of the hill in the east end zone where it has stayed ever since.
Prior to every game the team makes its way around the stadium to the east side where they gather at the top of the hill around Howard’s Rock before running onto the field. Checkout the hill to get a feel for what it is like to be a Clemson player.
Players and coaches who make a profound impact on the Clemson football program are immortalized by being put into the ring of honor. Members of the ring of honor include Frank Howard, Steve Fuller, Danny Ford, and the 1981 team that won the National Championship. Look for the ring of honor at the game to learn more about the Legends of Clemson football.