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COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 30 Capital One Orange Bowl

Source: Icon Sportswire / Getty

The 2023 college football season gets underway this weekend, with a handful of Week 0 games, before the season gets into full swing next weekend across the Labor Day holiday. Among the many questions across the sports landscape, involves the Clemson Tigers, a perennial power in the 2010s, that has missed the College Football Playoff the last two seasons. As the sport has changed in recent years with the arrival of NIL, and the ability to transfer without penalty, Dabo Sweeney hasn’t been very welcoming to the new way the game is being played, and many believe that is the reason for his programs’ “drop”. Let’s not act like the last two seasons have been bad, as Clemson has won 21 combined games, captured another ACC championship, and went to another New Year’s Six bowl game. But when the expectation is a national title or bust, it’s easy to see why there are doubts that Clemson has staying power in the new world of college football.

Clemson enters 2023 as the preseason favorite to win the ACC, despite being ranked below Florida State in the preseason AP poll. A big reason is the emergence of Will Shipley, who ran for over 1,100 yards and 15 touchdowns last season. Shipley is expected to have a big season, in new offensive coordinator, Garrett Riley’s offense. Riley was hired away from TCU, after he helped guide the Horned Frogs to the national title game, before losing to the Georgia Bulldogs.

The junior running back, joined the Wes & Walker Show earlier today on WFNZ, and he addressed whether the doubts around his team motivate him, and the team, saying “The outside noise is definitely fuel to our fire. This team in my time being here, going into my third year, is as hungry as we’ve ever been. This time has the chance to be special.”

Dabo Sweeney will turn to former five-star prospect, Cade Klubnik, a guy who earned ACC Championship Game MVP honors and started the Orange Bowl, to help get his program back into the College Football Playoff. In Garrett Riley’s high-powered offense, he and Shipley might be enough to carry the team back to the national spotlight. If not? Well the outside noise will only continue to get louder, and the doubt that the program has seen its glory days will start to fester in Tiger Town.

You can catch the Wes & Walker Show every weekday from 12-3 on Sports Radio 92.7 WFNZ, and the WFNZ app.

Will Shipley: The Outside Noise Motivates Us  was originally published on