Dan Scott: Clemson-FSU Prediction


by - Correspondent -
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Late notes from Practice

- Gaines Adams did not practice, but will play against Florida State.

- C.J. Gaddis is expected to travel to FSU, but is doubtful to play

- Linebacker Kavell Connor worked at SAM linebacker this week and will see action there along with Maurice Nelson.


Here we go again.


If last week's 34-33 2OT loss at Boston College is an example of what I'm up against this season...I don't even want to think about it. It's too painful. Already I can hear the calls for the bullpen.


Ahh, but I don't give up quite that easily. Call me a glutton for punishment, but I think we can hang around and try this for a few more weeks (keep your booing to yourself).


So, here we go. Clemson (1-1) at Florida State (2-0)


When Clemson Has The Ball

The Tigers' senior offensive line bears the brunt of responsibility in this one. With a depleted defense in need of all the help it can get, one of the best means of assistance is to simply keep them off the field. That means win the battle of time of possession, execute on third downs and - when given the chance - score touchdowns in the red zone, not just field goals. Of course, it's easier said than done when you consider FSU is allowing 13 yards rushing per game so far. The Seminoles are beat up a little on the defensive line, but their linebackers are as talented and fast a unit as Bobby Bowden has run out there in a long time. They can stop the run sideline to sideline, and can rush the passer from all angles. That means Will Proctor must make quick - and correct - decisions when throwing the football, and the wide receivers must make all the plays.

ADVANTAGE - Clemson


When FSU Has The Ball

There's a pretty good race going on right now between Florida State's offense and defense to see who can put up the lowest rushing numbers. Right now the offense has run for 46 total yards in two games. Of course, the Seminoles make up for it to a certain extent with the passing of Drew Weatherford. In recent days Bobby Bowden has been touting the fact that a running game isn't so important if you throw the football exceptionally well. And with Clemson's defense suffering from chronic injury syndrome - especially in the linebacking corps and secondary - one would figure Weatherford and company will attack relentlessly. As well they should.

ADVANTAGE - Florida State


Special Teams

Has a week spent working on kickoff coverage done the job? Can Jad Dean find some kind of consistency kicking the ball into the end zone? Is the punt protection really fixed? Stay tuned.

ADVANTAGE - Florida State


Coaching

Tommy Bowden and his staff have put together a couple of great game plans in recent victories over the Seminoles, but both of those wins came at Death Valley. They have yet to figure out a way to win in Tallahassee. And until they do...

ADVANTAGE - Florida State


BOTTOM LINE

Clemson gets encouraging results offensively, but the inexperience on defense will prove to be too much to overcome.


THE PICK

Florida State 31, Clemson 24

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