Saturday’s college football slate includes an Atlantic Coast Conference rivalry matchup featuring the No. 4 Clemson Tigers (7-1, 6-1 ACC) in Tallahassee, Fla., against the Florida State Seminoles (2-6, 1-6 ACC). Both teams enter Saturday following losing efforts in their previous outings.
Clemson took care of the Seminoles, 45-14, last season at home. Clemson is a massive 34.5-point favorite in this conference tilt.
What to Know – Clemson Tigers
After 28 consecutive conference victories, the Tigers suffered their first loss on the road against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in double overtime in Week 10. Clemson played the road contest without its starting quarterback, Trevor Lawrence, who has been sidelined the past two games due to a positive COVID-19 test.
There has been no word on Lawrence’s status for Saturday, but even if the star can’t go, the Tigers have fared well with D.J. Uiagalelei under center. The freshman has completed 71-of-104 passes for 883 yards, four touchdowns, and no interceptions, as well as rushing for four scores this season.
Travis Etienne was bottled up against a strong Notre Dame defense, rushing 18 times for just 28 yards. The senior running back did find the end zone and added eight catches for 58 yards.
While stuffed rushing, the Tigers erupted through the air, with Uiagalelei throwing for 439 yards and two scores. Cornell Powell (six catches, 161 yards, one touchdown) and Amari Rodgers (eight catches, 134 yards, one touchdown) benefited from the passing attack. Powell’s output was a career high for the redshirt senior.
What to Know – Florida Stae Seminoles
Once one of the nation’s premier programs, the Seminoles have fallen on tough times over the last few years and are fighting to maintain relevancy on the national stage. The Seminoles have one win over an FBS opponent this season, a thrilling 31-28 upset over then-No. 5 North Carolina at home.
The Seminoles were without Jordan Travis due to an injury in their loss last week to North Carolina State, so they started freshman Chubba Purdy. Purdy played well in his first collegiate start, completing 15-of-23 passes for 181 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Jashaun Corbin accounted for 14 carries for 77 yards and one touchdown, while Purdy added 12 attempts for 54 yards. Corbin’s yardage total was a season high for the sophomore. Travis is the team’s leading rusher with 469 yards this season.
Junior wide receiver Ontaria Wilson set career marks in receptions (seven) and yards (117). Wilson hauled in his second touchdown reception of the season. Sophomore Warren Thompson was the other recipient of a Purdy touchdown pass in the game.
The Pick Is In
This is the largest spread in program history for the Seminoles, who were a 25.5-point underdog to the Tigers last season. The quarterback situation on both rosters makes this one difficult to predict, but in reality, it doesn’t really matter.
Clemson’s talent level is well above that of the Seminoles, and the Tigers will be looking to take their frustration out after a rare loss and weekend off.
The Pick: Clemson -34.5