Georgia Tech beat Cumberland 222-0 in the most lopsided college football game in history on Oct. 7, 1916.
The Yellow Jackets felt the modern-day equivalent Saturday against No. 1 Clemson. The Tigers won 73-7 in another pick-your-score-game for Dabo Swinney that is going to raise questions about the level of play in the ACC.
Is Clemson too good for its own good in the conference? This has become one of the talking points that follow the Tigers with each lopsided victory against an ACC opponent. Their success almost works against the program from a perception standpoint — and that is a faulty narrative.
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Clemson is that good. It doesn’t matter what conference it is.
Its blowout of Georgia Tech was the latest in a string of football clinics. Trevor Lawrence hit 24 of 34 passes for 404 yards and five touchdowns. You can nitpick the interception he threw, but it was his first one in his last 13 games. Lawrence is, as usual, right in the mix for the Heisman Trophy. The Tigers clicked in all phases Saturday, and that led to their largest win in an amazing string of ACC victories.
If you include the last three championship games, then Clemson (5-0, 4-0 ACC) has won 26 in a row against conference opponents by a combined 1,176-322 score. The average margin of victory in those games is 30.3 points, and the 66-point spread against Georgia Tech was the biggest margin.
Clemson has won its four conference games this season by an average of 33.3 points, and it had no emotional letdown after pushing aside No. 13 Miami last week.
All of those ridiculous statistics lead to questions about the competition, complete with the “Put Clemson in the SEC” hypothetical. How much meat is left on the Tigers’ schedule?
The Nov. 7 matchup vs. No. 4 Notre Dame in South Bend is Game of the Year material, and a trip to No. 23 Virginia Tech on Dec. 5 will be interesting. Perhaps No. 5 North Carolina, which pushed Clemson to the limit in a 21-20 thriller last season, will be the opponent in the ACC championship game. But does this Clemson team look like it will lose a game?
The Tigers aren’t a problem for the ACC, though. Florida State wasn’t a problem when it won 12 conference championships from 1992-2005. The ACC does not have a problem at all. It has a powerhouse on top.
The Tigers are the most complete team in the country right now, regardless of conference, and they are reinforcing that with each Saturday clinic. They likely will make a sixth consecutive College Football Playoff and fifth CFP championship appearance, where they’ll have a shot at winning three national championships in that run.
Chances are they are going to put up even more points doing it. More stats related to wins are coming, too. Through that 26-game conference streak, Clemson has beaten more teams by 40 or more points (eight) than by 20 or fewer (seven).
Cumberland must be thankful that it isn’t on the schedule.