Since the College Football Playoff started in the 2014-15 season, Clemson football has been one of the most dominant teams in the entire country. The Tigers and Alabama have been the most consistent teams since then in terms of playoff appearances and national championships. However, throughout the past couple of years, it looks like Clemson's dynasty could be disappearing. The Tigers haven't made the playoff since 2020, and this season hasn't gotten off to a great start either.
Clemson football was a big favorite going into their week one matchup against Duke, but the Blue Devils ended up pulling off the major upset to drop the Tigers to 0-1. That's not how Dabo Swinney envisioned the season starting for his team. Clemson has bounced back and won games against Charleston Southern and FAU, and the Tigers are now 2-1 on the season. After starting the year ranked #9, Clemson is now unranked.
The week one loss to Duke was bad, but there are plenty of opportunities still ahead of the Clemson football team. It will be hard, but this team can still go 12-1 with an ACC title and College Football Playoff appearance. All of their goals are still ahead of them. Perhaps the biggest obstacle standing in the way of achieving those goals is Florida State football. The Seminoles are ranked #4 in the country after a convincing win against LSU in week one, and this weekend, Florida State will hit the road to take on Clemson. This is a massive game for both teams, and a massive game for the ACC. Here are four predictions for the big game.
Cade Klubnik throws for under 200 yards
The Clemson offense struggled mightily week one against Duke, and Florida State is going to present a lot more challenges than the Blue Devils did. This feels like a make or break type of game for Klubnik. He hasn't lived up to the hype yet, but if he manages to have a big game and get his team a win in this one, he'll be a hero. However, that doesn't seem likely, and the Seminoles defense is going to shut the Tigers down.
Cade Klubnik will throw an interception
In a big game like this, the turnover battle will be crucial. This is going to be the type of game where one small mistake can completely change the game, and the Florida State defense is going to be able to force that mistake. For Clemson to win, Klubnik is going to have to play a great game. Unfortunately for the Tigers, Florida State is just too good, and they will make the winning plays when it matters most.
Clemson will not score two touchdowns
Seeing the way this Clemson offense performed against Duke raises a lot of concerns for this game. They haven't proved anything against a good team yet, and until they do, there will continue to be doubts about this offense. Florida State, on the other hand, has proven it against a good team. All signs point to the Seminoles dominating this Clemson offense.
Florida State will win by two scores
This game is expected to be very close as the spread currently favors the Seminoles by only two points, but expect Florida State to win by more than that. It's hard to imagine Clemson putting up a lot of points in this one, so there will be a lot of pressure of Clemson's defense to keep them in the game. Jordan Travis will eventually wear that unit down, and the Seminoles will pull away in the end.
This should be a fun game to watch, and it will get going at noon ET from Clemson, SC.