College Football

more stats

NC State (6-4) at (11) Clemson (9-1)



Saturday, November 17, 3:30 p.m. (et)

The Sports Network

By Scott Haynes, Senior College Football Editor

GAME NOTES: Holding out hope for an ACC Atlantic Division title, the 11th- ranked Clemson Tigers close out their conference slate this weekend when they welcome the NC State Wolfpack to Death Valley.

The defending ACC champions are tied with Florida State atop the Atlantic Division standings at 6-1 (9-1 overall). However, it is the Seminoles that hold the tie-breaker by virtue of a 49-37 win over the Tigers on Sept. 22. Since then, Clemson has won six straight games, including last weekend's 45-10 rout of Maryland.

Dabo Swinney knows that despite the accomplishments to this point, the season is far from over.

"I've told my players that now is the time when top 10 teams separate themselves from the pack. The end of November is when it matters. We need to play our best football down the stretch."

Tom O'Brien's Wolfpack ended a two-game skid last weekend with a 37-6 victory over Wake Forest at home. With the win, the team moved to 6-4 on the season and became bowl eligible for the fourth time in O'Brien's six seasons at the helm in Raleigh.

Clemson leads the all-time series against the Wolfpack, 51-28-1. NC State has not won a game in Death Valley since 2002, with Clemson holding a 19-11 edge in games played there.

Mike Glennon may only be starting for his second season, but he has already left his mark on the school record books, ranking fourth all-time in several statistical categories.

This season Glennon has completed 57.3 percent of his passes, for 2,910 yards with 22 touchdowns. Wideouts Quintin Payton (42 receptions, 669 yards, one TD) and Bryan Underwood (40 receptions, 588 yards, 10 TDs) have been reliable targets, although Underwood has been much more productive in terms of getting into the end zone.

The NC State defense has shown flashes of strong play like last weekend against Wake Forest, but consistency has definitely been an issue. The team is allowing nearly 400 yards per game (396), including almost 260 yards passing. Safety Earl Wolff has been one of the nation's most active defenders, leading the Wolfpack with 104 total tackles. Fellow safety Brandan Bishop is a distant second with 88 tackles. All-American cornerback David Amerson (38 tackles), leads the team with four interceptions to continue the strong play in the NC State secondary.

O'Brien commented on his defense and the challenge that Clemson will bring.

"That's the challenge: playing a really explosive Clemson football team. They've got playmakers at every spot on offense - a really tough challenge for the defense to defend. That's what's great about the challenge. You've got to go on the road and play a top team, so it's an exciting time."

There aren't many offenses putting up the kind of numbers that Clemson can on a weekly basis. The Tigers are sixth nationally in scoring (42.9 ppg), 12th in passing (322.6 ypg) and seventh in total offense (513.8 ypg).

The orchestrator of the offense is junior QB Tajh Boyd, who is having another phenomenal season, completing 68 percent of his passes, for 2,941 yards, with 28 touchdowns. It certainly helps to have some of the nation's top receiving talent in the form of DeAndre Hopkins (66 receptions, 1,096 yards, 14 TDs) and All-American Sammy Watkins (42 catches, 561 yards, two TDs).

While the passing game is front and center for Clemson, the ground game can also dominate at times thanks to tailback Andre Ellington (835 yards, 5.1 ypc, eight TDs).

The Clemson offense has masked any deficiencies the defense has had in 2012. The team have posted modest numbers at best, allowing 22.4 ppg and 389.1 yards of total offense.

The strength of the unit is in the linebacking corps, with the top three tacklers being LBs Stephone Anthony (74 tackles, 4.5 TFLs, one sack), Jonathan Willard (70 tackles, 7.0 TFLs, two sacks) and Spencer Shuey (68 tackles, 5.0 TFLs, one sack). Safeties Rashard Hall (54 tackles, three INTs) and Jonathan Meeks (47 tackles, two INTs) highlight the play in the secondary.

Obviously with a big win over Florida State this season, NC State possesses the talent base to win any ACC game, but getting it done in Death Valley against the Tigers, who are clicking on all cylinders, is a tall task indeed.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Clemson 40, NC State 21

11/14 10:34:50 ET

Other Stories

  • ACC: Wake Forest at Duke

    Tonight at 8:00 on WRAL-TV

  • ACC: Syracuse at NC State

    Saturday at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Florida at Kentucky

    Saturday at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Pac 12: Stanford at Arizona

    Saturday at 4:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • ACC: Duke vs. Wake Forest

    Tonight at 8:00 on 620am

  • Big Ten: Wisconsin at Minnesota

    Tomorrow at 7:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • NBA: Dallas at Portland

    Tomorrow at 9:30 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • NHL: Hurricanes vs. Minnesota

    Friday at 8:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
7:30pm Tonight
BRK
CHA
 
8:00pm Tonight
DUKE
WAKE
 
1:05pm Today
BAL
DET
 
1:05pm Today
ATL
NYM
 
1:05pm Today
NYY
PHI
 
1:05pm Today
PIT
TOR
 
3:05pm Today
LOS
CWS
 
3:05pm Today
CLE
CIN
 
3:05pm Today
TEX
KAN
 
3:05pm Today
SFG
OAK
 
3:05pm Today
SEA
SDP
 
3:05pm Today
MIL
WMIL
 
3:10pm Today
COL
ARI
 
7:05pm Tonight
MIN
UMIN
 
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
PHO
 
7:30pm Tonight
BRK
CHA
 
7:30pm Tonight
TOR
CLE
 
7:30pm Tonight
BOS
UTA
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
DEN
 
8:00pm Tonight
NOP
DET
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIA
LAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
MEM
 
8:00pm Tonight
OKC
PHI
 
8:30pm Tonight
SAN
SAC
 
10:30pm Tonight
GSW
MIL
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAC
POR
 
12:00pm Today
PBY
LONG
 
2:00pm Today
GWEBB
CAMP
 
6:00pm Tonight
UNCA
LIB
 
6:00pm Tonight
PSU
OSU
 
7:00pm Tonight
USB
BING
 
7:00pm Tonight
FORD
DUQ
 
7:00pm Tonight
GMAS
GWU
 
7:00pm Tonight
UNH
HART
 
7:00pm Tonight
STJOE
LAS
 
7:00pm Tonight
Terriers
LIU
 
7:00pm Tonight
GTDNS
MAINE
 
7:00pm Tonight
LOU
ND
 
7:00pm Tonight
SHU
PROV
 
7:00pm Tonight
BRY
SHU
 
7:00pm Tonight
MORE
SEMIZ
 
7:00pm Tonight
MNTER
RFLSH
 
7:00pm Tonight
LSU
TENN
 
7:00pm Tonight
SFLA
UCF
 
7:00pm Tonight
VERM
UMBC
 
7:00pm Tonight
RMU
WAGN
 
7:30pm Tonight
UMASS
RICH
 
8:00pm Tonight
TULA
HOU
 
8:00pm Tonight
YALE
HOW
 
8:00pm Tonight
PITT
MIAMI
 
8:00pm Tonight
TXPA
NMST
 
8:00pm Tonight
MSU
PURD
 
8:00pm Tonight
STLU
BONA
 
8:00pm Tonight
DUKE
WAKE
 
9:00pm Tonight
TULSA
CIN
 
9:00pm Tonight
VANDY
MSST
 
9:00pm Tonight
EILL
SIUE
 
9:00pm Tonight
MARQ
STJ
 
9:00pm Tonight
OKST
TCU
 
9:00pm Tonight
UCLA
USC
 
9:00pm Tonight
WYO
UTST
 
10:00pm Tonight
FRES
AFA
 
10:00pm Tonight
SJST
BSU
 
10:00pm Tonight
NEV
COLST
 
10:00pm Tonight
ILL
NEB
 
11:00pm Tonight
ORST
OREG
 
11:00pm Tonight
UNLV
SDST
 
11:59pm Tonight
HAW
UCSB
 
Final
EDM 2
LOS 5
7:30pm Tonight
WIN
OTT
 
8:00pm Tonight
DET
NYR
 
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
MON
 
10:00pm Tonight
COL
PIT