Blitz Weekly

Fiesta Bowl Preview

Today's Fiesta Bowl looks to be an epic battle between two great programs. Photo Courtesy: Fiesta Bowl Facebook Page

Today’s Fiesta Bowl looks to be an epic battle between two great programs.
Photo Courtesy: Fiesta Bowl Facebook Page

By Alex Al-Kazzaz

Game Info
#3 Ohio State Buckeyes vs #2 Clemson Tigers
Saturday – December 31 – 6:00 pm
TV: ESPN
University of Phoenix Stadium – Glendale – Arizona

Records Before the Game
#3 Ohio State Buckeyes (11-1 Big Ten)
#2 Clemson Tigers (12-1 ACC)

Today the second-ranked Clemson Tigers and the third-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes will square off in the Fiesta Bowl. This will be OSU’s eighth appearance and they’re 5-2 in the Fiesta Bowl. This’ll be Clemson’s first appearance.

Comparing the Teams
Ohio State: Finished 11-1 overall and 8-1 in Big Ten play. Ohio State’s only loss was to the Penn State Nittany Lions. They’re currently ranked 12th in rushing offense, registering a total of 3,100 rushing yards, averaging 258 yards per game. They’re passing offense is ranked 83rd, registering 2,654 passing yards, averaging 222 yards per game. Their completion percentage is about 63 percent. On total offense, they’re 36th in the nation, scoring an average of about 43 points per game.

Ohio State’s rushing defense is ranked 14th, allowing a total of 1,414 rushing yards this season and only five rushing touchdowns. They allowed an average of about 118 rushing yards per game. They’re passing defense is 6th in the nation, allowing a total of 1,974 passing yards this season, intercepting 19 passes, and allowing an average of 165 passing yards per game. On total defense, Ohio State is 4th in the nation, and they allowed an average of 14.2 points per game.

Clemson: Finished 12-1 overall and 7-1 ACC play. Clemson’s only loss was against the University of Pittsburgh in what a was a heart-breaking 43-42 loss at home for Clemson. They’re rushing offense is ranked 61st, registering a total of 2250 yards this season, averaging 173 per game and scoring 25 rushing touchdowns. Clemson’s passing offense is ranked 5th, registering 4,324 passing yards, averaging 333 passing yards per game. The completion percentage of 68 percent. On total offense, they’re ranked 10th, scoring an average of 40.2 points per game.

Clemson’s rushing defense is 29th, allowing a total of 1,635 rushing yards this season and 17 rushing touchdowns. They allowed an average of about 126 yards per game. They’re passing defense is also 29th, allowing a total of 2,446 passing yards this season, intercepting 18 passes, and allowing an average of 188 passing yards per game. On total defense, they’re ranked 15th, and they allowed an average of 18.4 points per game.

I expect this game to be a hard-fought one. We’ve got the 4th overall defense (Ohio State) vs the 10th overall offense (Clemson) in this bout. Clemson’s 5th in the nation passing offense will definitely be ready to challenge Ohio State’s 6th in the nation passing defense. Ohio State will want to run and pass the ball. As I said, I expect a hard-fought match between these programs. The key to winning for both teams is to wear out the opposing defense and take full advantage. Both teams need to be effective on both sides of the ball. I got a gut feeling that both teams will have some struggles on defense.

Prediction
Clemson 38 – Ohio State 35

You must be logged in to post a comment Login