Clemson pulled off a stunning victory over No. 12 Notre Dame on Saturday as the Tigers somehow got past the Sam Hartman-led Fighting Irish, 31-23.
Tigers head coach Dabo Swinney had been under fire from fans over the course of the week as Clemson hasn’t looked like its usual self this season. Swinney had an outburst with a fan during his radio show but followed it with the big win to improve to 5-4 on the season.
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After the game, Swinney had a clear message for the naysayers.
“We haven’t had much go our way this year,” Swinney told ESPN sideline reporter Molly McGrath. “The one thing that has shown up every week is the heart and the fight from Clemson.
“I know we’re down and everybody’s throwing dirt on us. But if Clemson’s a stock, you better buy all you freakin’ can buy right now.”
Tigers running back Phil Mafah rushed for 86 yards and two touchdowns. Cade Klubnick threw for one more and Clemson was able to pick up the win.
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Clemson also picked off Hartman twice in the game. Jeremiah Trotter Jr. and Kylon Griffin were the ones who created the turnovers. Trotter returned his interception for a touchdown.
“It’s tough because there’s no one that loves us more than (Swinney) does,” Mafah said. “I personally take it personal, I know a lot of guys do, too, so we had to bring our all today.”
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With the win, Swinney is now the all-time winningest head coach in Clemson football history.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.