3 Reasons why Clemson will beat Louisville and 3 reasons they won’t.


It pretty much doesn’t get any bigger in the college football regular season than Saturday night when Top 5 ranked Clemson and Louisville hook up. Heisman candidates, playoff implications, and the nation watching. Clemson is the defending ACC Champion and just appeared in the national title game. Louisville placed an epic beatdown on Florida State, and may be the hottest team in the country.

I’m going to give you three reasons why Clemson wins this game and three reason why Louisville will win the game.

3 Reasons Clemson Wins

1) Death Valley

Clemson last lost a home on October 19, 2013. That was to the Florida State Seminoles, who went on to win the National Championship. That 16 straight home wins for Clemson. Don’t underestimate the power of playing at home in a big game. Death Valley can be one of the loudest most intimidating stadiums in the country. The mere fact Clemson playing is at home is worth 7-10 points.

2) Brent Venables and the Defense

Florida State’s defense has talent, and what Louisville did to that defense was mind-boggling. Let’s be honest though, that FSU defense isn’t very good. Against real offenses (Not Charleston Southern), they’ve played 2 good quarters of football all year. Ole Miss in the first half moved the ball at will against the Noles. South Florida dropped 35 on FSU. FSU gave up 38 to Houston in the Chick Fil A Bowl to end last year. That’s 4 straight games against real offenses, that Florida State has struggled. DC Charles Kelly is taking major heat.

Clemson’s defense is a top 5 unit this year, and DC Brent Venables is considered one of the best defensive minds the country. Dexter Lawrence might be the best freshman DT in college football. The Defensive Line is talented and physical. This will be a much greater challenge the Louisville offense.

3) Deshaun Watson

List all the college football teams that have beat Deshaun Watson – Short list because only College Football’s current standard Alabama have beat Deshaun Watson when he’s played the entire game. Despite an inconsistent start by Watson, let’s not forget Watson entered the season as the pre-season Heisman favorite. He shredded to pieces Alabama’s defense in the national title game. We know exactly what he’s capable of, and he rarely loses.

3 Reasons Louisville Wins

1) Lamar Jackson

2) Lamar Jackson

3) Lamar Jackson – Just kidding, but we are starting with Jackson

1) Lamar Jackson

Look Lamar Jackson might be the most physically gifted QB college football has seen since Michael Vick. Jackson is a freakish athlete, and the scary part is his passing ability is catching up with incredible athletic ability. He made a fast FSU defense look like they standing still. Clemson only has to look at their own QB and what he did against Alabama and that ultra-talented defense to realize that no matter what Venables schemes up, there may be no stopping Jackson.

2) Better Balance

Right now Louisville looks like the more balanced team. The can run it down your throat, or go over top on offense.  That makes them especially difficult to defend – pick your poison. Their defense plays in the shadow of the offense, but is extremely talented and better than it is given credit for.  The Tigers have gotten by on  defense, but the offense is clearly in a funk. Clemson’s offensive line has been a big disappointment this year. The Tigers can’t run the ball and are struggling to win the line of scrimmage. Louisville is not a team to play to try and try to fix those offensive issues.

3) No Pressure

Clemson is the team that enters the game with the most pressure. A Tiger loss likely ensures that the Cardinals will win the ACC Atlantic division and have the inside track to the playoffs. Clemson would face a real up hill battle to get back into the playoff chase, as they will most likely finish behind Louisville in the ACC standings. Louisville on the other hand, with a loss can still tie for division. Clemson still has to play at Florida State. Clemson is also playing under the weight of huge pre-season expectations. That means something. Louisville enters the game with not nearly as much to lose as Clemson.

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