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A week-long beach vacation is among the perks South Carolina football fans might have over Clemson fans cash-poor after so many College Football Playoff trips. File/Staff

My many duties here on The Post and Courier campus include speaking to civic groups that offer nice lunch spreads, keeping Paul Finebaum off the ledge, requesting documents, writing columns.

Oh, and attempting to maintain peace among South Carolina football fans and Clemson football fans; always a tall order and extra-difficult during the Dabo Swinney Dancing Era.

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Clemson’s Travis Etienne (9) celebrates a touchdown during the College Football Playoff national championship game, Clemson's 44-16 victory over Alabama on Jan. 7, 2019 at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. Andrew J. Whitaker/Staff

But while Clemson clearly has had the upper hand this last half-decade — four straight College Football Playoff trips, two national championships — there is a way for Gamecock Nation to get back at a certain group of smug folks spread out from Sassafras Mountain to Fort Sumter.


Send them if you haven't. Keep sending if you started with that ski trip to Vail last winter. 

If not postcards from the edge of glory, postcards and social media posts from recent vacation spots all over the country and the planet.

So many Clemson fans are struggling financially. They can’t afford to go on vacation, what with those College Football Playoff trips to Santa Clara, Dallas, New Orleans, Phoenix (twice), Tampa and Miami.

Hey, Charlie:

Hope you’re having fun cutting the lawn! Lake Tahoe is great — mid-50s at night! 36 holes a day, rented a boat, saw a bear, won $546 playing blackjack in Reno.

Al and Steph

P.S. Have fun at the reunion in Bamberg!

South Carolina fans have lots of available cash to spend.

All they had to do last season was make a day trip to Charlotte, and with a 28-0 loss to Virginia in the Belk Bowl they were able to save money on concessions by leaving early.

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South Carolina suffered a 28-0 loss to Virginia last season at the Belk Bowl in Charlotte. At least the trip didn't cost much for Gamecock fans. Travis Bell/Sideline Carolina

The bumper sticker budget

Sure, examining cactus in Arizona has been fun for Clemson fans. But the desert gets cold in the winter.

And how many NFL stadiums can you scratch off the bucket list without a sense of “Groundhog Day” sameness creeping in?

South Carolina fans, on the other side of the checkbook ledger, still have a beach house budget.

They can read about Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne — er, Jake Bentley and Tavien Feaster — while calculating an exchange rate.

Zeb and Martha Lou,

Having a blast here in Venice. So many canals! Amazing pizza in Pisa. Saw Dabo and the family in Rome. I guess when you make $9.3 mil per year you can still afford to travel!

Wish you were here!

Gamecock Gus

Meanwhile, Clemson fans are strapped even if they didn't attend a playoff game.

All that spending on new T-shirts, sweatshirts, jackets, pennants, car flags, caps, bobbleheads, bumper stickers.

It’s hard.

It’s really hard.

Feeling the need to update the wardrobe after … every … single … College Football Playoff trip.


Gnarly waves here at Redondo Beach, bud.

No orange and purple!


So stoked about Malibu mañana!


French Quarter vs. Canada

Winning has its advantages. Ask those Clemson fans spotted on Bourbon Street at 3:30 a.m. (not by me, of course, but by another dedicated reporter).

Santa Clara, you know, is only one long Uber ride away from Fisherman’s Wharf.

But it’s not just the last four years.

Clemson fans, with the recruiting machine humming, must save up for the next four years.

Dearest Lois,

Greetings from lovely Banff, where our tour group arrived punctually the night before last. The views of Lake Louise are as exquisite as advertised in the brochure. Hal did have a minor incident at the canoe launch when he tried to tip in U.S. dollars but the horseback ride (box lunch included) was more magnificent than anything we experienced on the senior cruise last year. 

Tomorrow we are scheduled for a “History of Canadian Fur Trapping” presentation at 3:30 p.m. in Calgary, followed by cocktails.



By the way, my family was able to sneak in a quick hiking vacation to Utah this month. So spectacularly scenic, five national parks in four days.

It was amusing to see a young man with a “Clemson Ring Season” T-shirt at a second-floor hotel ice machine in bustling Moab.

“How can you afford a trip like this after all the football traveling,” I asked.

He smiled.

“I came with my parents,” he answered. “They’re South Carolina fans.”

Follow Gene Sapakoff on Twitter @sapakoff