NC State and Clemson play for the 87th time in 2018. Plenty of conference-mates play a ton of times and it’s not an occasion. Others make it a huge deal in marquee trophy games. But the Wolfpack and Tigers have a trophy game that exists somewhere in between those two extremes.
This is the Textile Bowl.
Yes, the textiles you learned about in history class.
They were an absolute staple crop of the southern United States since the colonial days.
Small, individualized mill enterprises existed in South Carolina in the early 1800s or maybe even late 1700s, though it took renowned industrialist William Gregg of Graniteville to put the state, and largely the South, on the map for textile manufacturing. “He’s considered the Southern cotton manufacturer father of the South. He was pivotal,” Zeise said.
That feeds into the Carolinas’ land-grant institutions. Clemson was founded as a school with firm agricultural roots. The first name of the school was Clemson Agricultural College.
But the textile industry has drastically changed thanks to the outsourcing of labor overseas, among other factors. It’s no longer a major at Clemson, but the school is still heavily involved in the industry. NC State’s textile program boasts nearly 1,000 students.
The name was adopted in 1981, part of a joint promotional effort by North and South Carolina.
On the field, the matchup has been dominated by the Tigers, who lead the series 57-28-1 historically.
The game’s been played annually since 1971 and is largely good-natured. Clemson coach Dabo Swinney has only lost the game once, and the Tigers have only lost to the Wolfpack three times since 2000.
They play for this baby right here.
In the annals of rivalry trophies, this one is pretty sweet. The logos painted onto the wood are awesome, and the scores on the front give it a nice touch, too.
In 2013, NC State coach Dave Doeren talked about being a newcomer to the rivalry.
“I am excited,” Doeren said earlier this week. “It is a blue-collar game. It goes back a long time. It just happens to be against the hottest team in our league right now, at least on our side. I am really excited about it. For it to be the ACC opener for me, our staff and this team it is going to be a great challenge with a great opportunity. I am really honored to be a part of the game.”
This rivalry has had its fair share of heated moments, especially recently.
In 2015, after former Tigers QB Deshaun Watson ran out of bounds into NC State’s sideline, it looked like a Wolfpack staffer tried to give him a bit of a shove. You can be the judge here:
In 2016, former Clemson running back Wayne Gallman left the game early due to injury. After NC State’s 24-17 loss to the Tigers, Doeren had a questionable response when he was asked if his team did what was needed to win the game:
“Yeah, we did,” Doeren said via the Post and Courier. “We knocked their tailback out of the game.”
His comments were later clarified:
“Coach Doeren’s comments during his weekly television program were in the context of the overall physical play of the defense, as he also referenced having four takeaways, a pair of goal line stands and giving up just two plays of more than twenty yards,” an NC State official said.
And after Clemson’s 38-31 victory 2017, Doeren asked why the Tigers had a laptop on the sidelines during the game, which is a violation of ACC rules:
“I’d like to know why there was a laptop on Clemson’s sideline that people were looking at, too,” Doeren said. “I’d like that to be investigated. Maybe they weren’t doing anything, but I was told it’s illegal to have technology on the sideline. So I’d like to know that as well.”
The laptop ended up belonging to a Clemson videographer.Also last year, and former NC State defensive end and current Denver Bronco Bradley Chubb stole some towels from former Clemson QB Kelly Bryant:
So, grab your favorite article of cotton clothing and enjoy the game.
That T-shirt you’re wearing has a much deeper link to what’s going on on the field than you realize.