Improving perception of other programs in ACC helps Clemson football

Travis Etienne
Travis Etienne /

Clemson football fans should be okay with the Tigers not being seen as the best at every position group in the ACC.

Once again, Clemson football fans took to Twitter to voice their displeasure the someone else in the ACC being given some pre-season love. Rich Cirminiello, the Director of College Awards for the Maxwell Club, stated that while the ACC did have the best defensive line group in 2020, it was Pittsburgh football and not Clemson.

Given the grief that Clemson football has been given over the last couple of years, it’s okay that other ACC teams are given love and recognized, all that does is give more significance to what Clemson accomplishes by running through the league.

We see this every year in the SEC, sure Alabama has been the best team for most of the last decade, other SEC teams are seen as competitive and are oftentimes given credit for having better position groups. This allows SEC fans to point to the laughable “competitiveness” of the conference when in fact there really isn’t any.

There is no doubt that the 2020 Clemson football defensive line is stacked and deep but there is some work to do with that group and getting three freshmen ready to play without a normal offseason will be difficult.

Pitt has something Clemson football doesn’t in 2020 – a lot of experience on the defensive line.

The Pitt Panthers have four guys across the defensive line that could have gone to the NFL in 2019 and instead chose to come back. Three of those four players are redshirt seniors and they have a redshirt junior as well. Not only are they talented, but they are seasoned and have a lot of games under their belt.

When you look at their reserves, they have three redshirt juniors and a redshirt sophomore, again a lot playing time and experience.

Clemson is more talented as a group, but they have just two seniors, a junior, a redshirt sophomore, and then a bunch of underclassmen.

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While I have personally maintained that I don’t care about the ACC, Clemson certainly needs more people to take interest in the league and start to realize that Clemson is dominating really good programs on a yearly basis and in turn deserves more credit than they are given.