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Clemson's Close Call vs. UNC May Knock Tigers From No. 1 Ranking

A closeup of Clemson football coach Dabo Swinney.

ARLINGTON, TEXAS - DECEMBER 29: Head coach Dabo Swinney of the Clemson Tigers reacts during the fourth quarter in the College Football Playoff Semifinal Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic at AT&T Stadium on December 29, 2018 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

The Clemson Tigers have been ranked No. 1 in both the AP Poll and the Coaches' Poll all season - mostly because they're the defending national champions and they haven't lost yet this year. College football fans are wondering if they will still be on top after this week's performance.

Clemson struggled mightily on the road against North Carolina, and could have lost if not for a questionable play call on a two-point conversion in the final two minutes. The Tigers did not look like the No. 1 team in the country.

Alabama, meanwhile, steamrolled Ole Miss, looking every bit the part. The Crimson Tide could, in theory, jump the Tigers in the rankings.

Clemson dominated Alabama the last time the two teams met on the field. But every year is different.

In reality, it doesn't matter all that much. The polls don't influence the College Football Playoff rankings, and if Clemson finishes the year undefeated, it will be one of the four teams selected.

That said, Clemson clearly has some issues to fix on both offense and defense. The Tigers have a bye week coming up before hosting Florida State in two weeks.