Clemson vs Florida State

No. 4 Clemson vs Florida State Preview | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

Written by on November 20, 2020

Clemson vs. Florida State once was the best rivalry in the ACC, but it has been very one-sided for a handful of years and looks to be again on Saturday as the No. 4 Tigers are huge NCAAF betting favorites in Tallahassee.

How to Bet Clemson at Florida State NCAA Football Odds & TV Info

  • When: Saturday, noon ET
  • Where: Doak Campbell Stadium, Tallahassee
  • TV: ABC
  • Stream: ESPN app
  • Radio:com
  • Opening NCAAF Lines: Clemson -35.5 (total 63)

Last Meeting

Clemson was a 45-14 winner over FSU in 2019. Trevor Lawrence threw three touchdown passes, two to Justyn Ross. he final four. Travis Etienne ran for 127 yards and caught Lawrence’s other TD. The Tigers’ defense collected four turnovers and limited the Seminoles 253 yards and 103 rushing yards. Lawrence is of course still around, but Ross isn’t playing this season due to a health issue that may threaten his football career.

FSU leads the series 20-13 and 12-5 at home, but the Tigers have won the past five. Clemson attempting to win a third consecutive game at Doak Campbell Stadium for the first time in series history.

Why Bet on Clemson? | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

Clemson (7-1) has played the past two games without star QB Trevor Lawrence after he tested positive for COVID, but he’ll be back here. He missed a 34-28 win over Boston College and then a 47-40 double-overtime loss at Notre Dame on Nov. 7. Five-star freshman QB DJ Uiagalelei, who filled in for Lawrence, will return to his backup post.

Lawrence, who is 31-1 as a starter in his career, says he feels 100 percent back to normal.

“He’s right back,” tight end Braden Galloway said. “From a football standpoint, it looks like he hasn’t missed a beat.”

Tight end Braden Galloway said that he expects to be back to full strength for this game after being hindered by an ankle injury.  Clemson’s open week gave Galloway additional time to recover. The redshirt senior has appeared in all eight of the Tigers’ games this season, and he boasts a receiving stat line of 19-230-2. Backup running back Darien Rencher will not play after testing positive for COVID-19. The redshirt senior, who provides additional depth behind starter Travis Etienne and backup Lyn-J Dixon, has rushed for 88 yards on 20 carries this season.

Etienne (4,672), the ACC’s all-time rushing yardage leader, needing 328 more rushing yards this season to become the first 5,000-yard rusher in ACC history. Etienne is the only player in the FBS with 600 rushing yards and 400 receiving yards this season. Etienne’s 491 receiving yards this year lead all FBS running backs.

Clemson, which has scored at least 34 points in each of its first eight games, is attempting to join 2013 Florida State as the only ACC teams ever to score 34 or more points in each of the first nine games of a season

Clemson enters having won 26 of its 28 true road games since the start of the 2015 season. The Tigers are attempting to improve to 50-3 against conference opponents since the start of the 2015 season, the first year of Clemson’s active run of five consecutive ACC titles.

Clemson is 26-6 in games following a loss under Dabo Swinney, including season openers following a loss in the previous season finale. Clemson, which was already the first school to defeat Florida State in ACC play in five consecutive years, attempting to push that winning streak to six straight years. The Tigers are attempting to become only the fifth program ever to win three consecutive road games against Florida State in Tallahassee.

Why Bet on Florida State? | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

The Noles (2-6) are huge disappointments and lost a third straight last week, 38-22 at NC State. Florida State quarterback Chubba Purdy threw for 181 yards and two touchdowns in his first career start and wide receiver Ontaria Wilson caught a career-high seven passes for 117 yards in the loss.

Purdy helped the Seminoles outscore the Wolfpack by a 19-17 margin in the second half.  He threw for two second half touchdowns and ran for 54 yards as Florida State’s primary quarterback for the first time in his career. Purdy became the fifth true freshman in FSU history to start a game at quarterback, joining Billy Prescott (1973), Chip Ferguson (1985), James Blackman (2017) and Tate Rodemaker (2020).

This is just the second time in school history, and first since 1985, that Florida State has started four different quarterbacks in a season. In addition, FSU started four freshmen on the offensive line – Darius Washington (LT), Thomas Shrader (LG), Maurice Smith (C) and Robert Scott Jr. (RT). Starting right guard Baveon Johnson is one of just 13 seniors on the FSU roster.

For the season, 23 players have made the first start of their FSU careers, including 10 freshmen. » Freshmen and sophomores make up 73.7 percent of FSU’s roster, the highest underclassmen percentage in the country. Additionally, FSU’s 13 seniors are the 6th-fewest in FBS.

Alas, it won’t be Purdy here as he’s has been ruled out for the remainder of the season due to issues with the collarbone that he broke earlier this season. His first surgery was in August, and then a second procedure was required to “clean” things up. Purdy has now gone under the knife for a third time.  With Jordan Travis also having struggled to stay healthy and James Blackman entering the transfer portal, Florida State is in a bad spot depth-wise at the position.

Travis, who had started Florida State’s previous four games before suffering an injury, is expected back this week. Travis, a sophomore, has 864 passing yards with four touchdowns and five interceptions this season. Florida State has only two healthy scholarship quarterbacks left: Travis and Rodemaker.

The Seminoles have 26 attempts on 4th downs this season, the most in the ACC and tied for the 2nd-most attempts in the nation. Florida State’s 14 successful 4th-down conversions are tied for the ACC lead and for 6th nationally.

Game Trends

  • Tigers are 12-4 ATS in their last 16 road games.
  • Tigers are 2-7 ATS in their last 9 games overall.
  • Seminoles are 7-18-1 ATS in their last 26 games overall.
  • Seminoles are 1-6 ATS in their last 7 home games.
  • Tigers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings in Florida State.
  • Over is 8-2 in the last 10 meetings in Florida State.

Expert College Football Prediction

Clemson 47, Florida State 13


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