The Clemson men are third in the Capital One Cup standings

Sep 12, 2015; Clemson, SC, USA; Clemson Tigers mascot during the first quarter against the Appalachian State Mountaineers at Clemson Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 12, 2015; Clemson, SC, USA; Clemson Tigers mascot during the first quarter against the Appalachian State Mountaineers at Clemson Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports /

It’s been a good year for Clemson Tigers‘ sports particularly on the men’s side with a National Championship in football and a soccer team that finished fifth overall after back to back Elite Eight appearances.

For the second consecutive year, the men are in the top five of the Capital One Cup standings.

The following description of the cup was taken from

"The Capital One Cup is awarded annually to each of the best men’s and women’s Division I college athletics programs in the country. Points toward the Capital One Cup are earned and tracked throughout the year based on final standings of NCAA Championships and final official coaches’ polls. One winning men’s and one winning women’s program will be crowned after the completion of the final NCAA spring championships. Capital One will award a combined $400,000 in student-athlete scholarships and the Capital One Cup trophy to the winning schools at the ESPY awards in July."

In the standings, Clemson is currently third and football and soccer have provided all the points.

Capital One puts collegiate sports in two groups, Group A and Group B, and points are accumulated from national titles and top 10 finishes. See the point system here. Football and soccer are both in Group B along with lacrosse, basketball, and baseball. With the 35-30 win over Alabama, the football team earned 60 points, and the soccer team earned 18 points with a final ranking of fifth in the NSCAA/Continental Tire poll.


1. Stanford 84.5
2. North Carolina 84
3. Clemson 78
4. James Madison 60
5. Oregon 42
6. Alabama 40
7. Gonzaga 36
7. Wake Forest 36
7. Youngstown State 36
10. Denver 35
10. Ohio State 35
10. USC 35

Last season, the two sports led the Tigers to a fifth place finish in the 2016 Cup standings with a total of 72 points. Both teams made national championship appearances and earned points as runner-ups. Stanford won with 126 points, and North Carolina(108), Ohio State(80) and Oklahoma(73) finished second, third and fourth, respectively.

Can Clemson win the cup?

Only with a better finish from baseball and golf.

Just like 2016, the two teams are pivotal for Clemson chances to bring the cup home. After winning ACC championships last year, both teams competed in their respective playoffs but failed to win titles or finish in the top ten, hence no points towards the cup.

Golf is currently ranked 15th and has won a school record five straight tournaments. They have also tied the 2003 national championship team with six overall tournament wins. That figure is best in collegiate golf for 2017. Could this team continue its hot streak and win a title? Well, if that happens it would add 20 points to the cup total. Stanford(14), Oregon(5) and Wake Forest(8) are also ranked nationally.

Baseball is fourth in the USA Today Coaches’ Poll with a 28-5 record right before they slide into the toughest part of their schedule. There are tough series ahead against number two Louisville, North Carolina(5), Wake Forest(22) and FSU(25). This squad has been impressive and a strong finish could get a national title and 60 cup points. Stanford is number 19 in the baseball poll.

Stanford and North Carolina will have chances to earn points in sports that Clemson doesn’t compete in, so golf and baseball have to get it done for the Tigers to have a chance to win the cup. The 72 points were enough to finish fifth last year but a repeat soccer title for Stanford and a basketball championship for the Tarheels have put the pressure on Clemson to score more points this year.

Stanford was able to win with one Group B title(soccer) and a runner-up title in Group A(gymnastics). Can the Tigers score 138 with a baseball win or 158 with title wins in both sports? Either scenario would definitely give Clemson University the opportunity to win another trophy.