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Week 13: Tigers vs Gamecocks Preview/Pick

Week 13 – Clemson Tigers @ South Carolina Gamecocks

Date: Saturday, November 28 12:00 PM EST
Site: Columbia, South Carolina
BetUS LINE: Clemson -3

Preview:

The bye week for the Gamecocks couldn’t have come at a better time. After starting 6-2, they have lost three straight and are looking to get going in time for bowl season.

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After starting the season 2-3 all seemed to be lost for the Tigers, but six straight wins has them set for a rematch against Georgia Tech in the ACC title game. The Tigers are arguably the hottest team in the country right now, but they are still looking for that big win against a quality opponent.

If you love defense you are going to love this game, both defenses rank highly and both offenses are average. The South Carolina defense is lead by LB Eric Norwood (66 tackles, 7 sacks, two INTs); a lot of people outside of the state don’t know about him, but believe me he is as good as they come. On the other side, Clemson safety DeAndre McDaniel (75 tackles, 8 INTs), leads the team in both interceptions and tackles. Both lead their defenses well, and look to have big days considering the QB’s they are targeting.

For Steve Spurrier’s Gamecocks this tilt will come down to how much the running game produces. When Stephen Garcia has to throw the ball more than 20 times, the Gamecocks are 2-4. Considering Kenny Miles leads the team in rushing with 488 yards, Clemson will likely stack the box and make Garcia beat them through the air.

So if Garcia has to throw the ball, he will have to make good quick decisions. If SC has to throw to win, freshman Alshon Jeffery is as good a target as any. He has been on fire in his last seven games, catching 36 passes for 641 yards and six scores. So when Clemson stacks the box, expect a lot of play-action passes deep to the dynamic frosh.

The only edge in this match-up of great defenses is one player, C.J. Spiller. He is a small do-it-all back in the mold of Percy Harvin. His stats as a runner aren’t overly impressive (172 carries, 894 yards, 7 TD), but these only account for half of his scores. Spiller returns kicks, catches from the backfield, or lines up in the slot. He is the X-factor in this game. The coaching staff will look to get him the ball 25-30 times and let him take over.

Being a rivalry game the score would already be close, there has to be one thing that gives one team the advantage. That would be Spiller. He could single-handedly decide this game. If he plays well, the Tigers will win, if not, expect a close win by SC. Since Spiller has been unstoppable lately, don’t bet on it stopping anytime soon. Expect Clemson to win a close game and for Spiller to book his trip to New York for the Heisman ceremony.

2009 Team Stats

Total Offense: Clemson- 64th
South Carolina- 75th

Total Defense: Clemson- 12th
South Carolina- 17th

Spread/Trends

Trends:

Clemson is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
Clemson is 6-1 SU in its last 7 games when playing South Carolina
Clemson is 6-1 SU in its last 7 games when playing on the road against South Carolina
Clemson is 6-2 ATS in its last 8 games when playing South Carolina
South Carolina is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games at home
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of South Carolina’s last 5 games
South Carolina is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games
South Carolina is 2-5 ATS in its last 7 games when playing at home against Clemson

2009: Clemson: 8-3 ATS
South Carolina: 6-5 ATS

O/U: Clemson: 6-5
South Carolina: 5-6

Pick: Clemson -3

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Adam Slozar is a CFB Junkie and regular contributor to the Cappers Picks Blog. He also hails from the Great White North but don’t hold that against him. Adam wants to hear from you so please comment below.

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