Clemson University

National champion Clemson preseason favorite already for next season

‘This team was special from Day One,’ Dabo says

Clemson football coach Dabo Swinney reacts after the Tigers defeated Alabama for the national championship.
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Clemson football coach Dabo Swinney reacts after the Tigers defeated Alabama for the national championship.

National champion Clemson is atop several Way Too Early Top 25 polls released Tuesday.

The Tigers are coming off their second national title in three seasons with a 44-16 win over Alabama on Monday at Levi Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. ESPN, Sports Illustrated and CBS Sports all have the Tigers as their No. 1 team in their early rankings.

USA Today has Alabama as its favorite in its early preseason poll.

The Tigers finished No. 1 in the final Associated Press poll with Alabama No. 2, Ohio State third and Georgia fourth. It was the same top four in final Amway Coaches Poll. Clemson wasn’t ranked No. 1 at any point during the regular season.

Clemson returns quarterback Trevor Lawrence, running back Travis Ettiene and receivesr Justyn Ross and Tee Higgins among others. All had huge roles in Monday’s title win. The Tigers lose several several key players on defense including Christian Wilkins, Clelin Farrell, Dexter Lawrence and Austin Bryant but Xavier Thomas and Justin Foster look to step in to rolls from departing players.

Westgate Sports Book in Las Vegas has Clemson has favorite in 9-5 odds with Alabama at 5-2.

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