November 4, 2015 Louisville, KY. (Analyzed Sports)
College Football: Florida St vs. Clemson Preview
This was supposed to be a matchup of unbeaten top 10 teams. One team has kept their unbeaten season. The other team had a heart breaking lost on a blocked field goal return touchdown against Georgia Tech. Florida St travels to Memorial Stadium in a battle of ACC heavyweights at Death Valley. Clemson last time out had a 56-41 win over N.C. State. With Dalvin Cook sitting out Florida St beat Syracuse 45-21.
There is a lot to play for in this game for both teams. Clemson is looking for a signature win to put on their résumé as they seek a berth in the College Football Playoffs. Clemson has claimed a top 5 ranking at #3 in the AP poll and winning out would almost certainly secure a shot at the National Championship. For Florida St there is a slim chance even with a win they could reach the playoffs. Currently ranked 17th in the AP poll a chance at the ACC championship is still in play. With a conference title a New Years Six bowl game is still in the cards. The New Years Six bowl games are the most important of the bowl season.
Heisman Trophy candidate Deshaun Watson leads Clemson at quarterback with 20 TD’s and 7 INT’s. The running game is solid; Wayne Gallman has 874 rushing yards with 7 TD’s. The offense ranks 19th overall. The defense for Clemson is what turns this into a National Championship contender. Currently they rank 14th in rush defense 11th in pass defense and 5th overall (per: CBSsports). They hold offenses to under 300 total yards.
Junior defensive end Shaq Lawson is certainly ready for the Saturday showdown, telling reporters Monday that he believes that the Tigers will “show Dalvin Cook why he should have come to Clemson” by the time the game is over.
Everett Golson was out due to injury; Sean Maguire had a solid game in his place. Everett was brought into Florida St to win games something he was accustomed to doing while playing at Norte Dame. This year he has 11 TD’s with 1 INT. Explosive running back Dalvin cook looks to make plays against a top-notch defense. He has 1037 yards 11 TD’s with an 8.2 yards per game. Overall the offense is 41st in the nation. Florida St Defense is ranked 22nd in the nation (per: CBSsports). It’s been a bend but don’t break approach this season.
Would a team that couldn’t even win its division make the College Football Playoff? Highly unlikely, for Clemson the playoff math is simple, win and you’re in. No game is more important than the one staring them in the face Saturday. This might be the biggest game in Clemson football history thus far.