The ACC championship game between Clemson and Miami could very well be decided by turnovers, but Tigers coach Dabo Swinney said Miami’s famous turnover chain will not have an impact on the game.
“It’s not going to come down to a chain,” Swinney said Friday afternoon in Charlotte. “It’s going to come down to players making plays, taking care of the ball, creating turnovers, field position, big plays. That’s what wins championship football.”
Miami is tied with UCF for the national lead in turnover margin at plus 17. Clemson is well behind at plus 3.
Miami also is ranked third in turnovers forced with 29. Clemson is No. 79 with 16. Yet, the Tigers have scored more points off of turnovers than Miami entering the ACC title game.
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The Hurricanes have scored 72 points off turnovers. Clemson has scored 77.
“The name of the game is points,” Swinney said. “They’ve had an unbelievable year creating turnovers, but so have we. We’ve scored 77 points off of turnovers this year, they’ve scored 72. We haven’t had a chain or anything like that, but both teams have had incredible years and have been very opportunistic creating turnovers and scoring points off of those turnovers. Both teams.”
Miami coach Mark Richt described the chain as “awesome” and added that it is a fun way to motivate his team.
“The thing about the turnover chain is that it is Miami,” Richt said. “It’s got the big U, all the gems and sparkles, all that kind of thing. That’s kind of how we roll down there in Miami.”
With that said, Richt knows that it has gotten so much attention because the Hurricanes are playing well and doing a great job of creating turnovers.
“If we were 5-5 and had five turnovers, then people would be making fun of the thing,” he said. “But with the rise of our team, as far as the winning record, winning a Virginia Tech game on TV at 8, winning a Notre Dame game prime time in our stadium, everybody is seeing all the things that come with it. The chain has been a huge part of it.”