Swinney, Spiller pick up awards

Clemson Head Coach Dabo Swinney has been named ACC Coach of the Year by the Sporting News.

Swinney led Clemson to its first Atlantic Division championship with a 6-2 conference record. The Tigers lost in the ACC championship game to Georgia Tech on December 5, by a 39-34 score. The Tigers are 8-5 overall entering the Gaylord Hotels Music City Bowl game against Kentucky.

Swinney is in his first full season as Clemson head coach. He is tied for second nationally behind Oregon Coach Chip Kelly in terms of victories by first year head coaches this year. His eight wins this year are tied for the fifth most among first-year Clemson coaches.

Among Clemson's six wins this year were victories over Miami (FL) and Florida State. This year marks the first time that Clemson has beaten both Miami (FL) and Florida State in the same season. Clemson defeated eighth ranked Miami on the road on October 24 by a 40-37 score in overtime. It tied for the highest ranked team Clemson has beaten on the road in school history. The six conference wins are the most for the Clemson program since 2003.

SPILLER ADDS BANKS MCFADDEN AWARD: Clemson running back and kick returner C.J. Spiller will receive the Banks McFadden Award as the top college football player in the state of South Carolina on Feb. 15, 2010. The award is presented each year by the Greenville Touchdown Club and is named in honor of former Clemson All-American Banks McFadden.

Spiller will receive the honor at the Greenville Touchdown Club Awards Banquet on Monday, February 15 at the Brookwood Community Church in Greenville. Clemson Head Coach Dabo Swinney will be the featured speaker at the event that begins at 7:00 PM.

Spiller is the eighth Clemson player to win the award, the first since Cullen Harper in 2007. Anthony Simmons won the award twice as a linebacker, 1996 and 1997.

Spiller was named a unanimous first ­team All-American all-purpose player this year, just the third Clemson football player to be named a unanimous All-American. Spiller is just the third unanimous All-American in Clemson history. He joins Terry Kinard, a unanimous selection as a safety in 1982, and Gaines Adams, a unanimous pick at defensive end in 2006.

Spiller is the first Clemson player to make first-team AP All-American since 2006 when Adams was chosen and is the first offensive player to make first-team AP All-American from Clemson since Stacy Seegars in 1991. He is the first back or receiver from Clemson to make first-team AP All-American since Jerry Butler did it in 1978.

A finalist for the Doak Walker Award, Spiller had 233 yards rushing in 20 attempts and scored a career high four touchdowns in the ACC Championship game against Georgia Tech on December 5. He now has 1,145 rushing yards this year and 445 receiving yards. He has 50 career touchdowns and needs just one in the Music City Bowl against Kentucky to become Clemson's career leader. He finished sixth in the voting for the Heisman Trophy, the highest finish for an ACC player since 2000 and tied for the highest finish by a Clemson player.

This year he has accounted for a touchdown five different ways, 11 rushing, four receiving, four on kickoff returns, one on a punt return and one by throwing a touchdown pass. He has already established an NCAA record for kickoff returns for touchdowns in a career with seven. He has 7416 all-purpose yards for his career, third best in NCAA history. This season he has 2508 all-purpose yards, an ACC record.

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