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Clemson vs. Auburn

Tigers vs. Tigers

Pointspread: Auburn -6.5 Live Odds

9/18/10

The Clemson Tigers have something to prove. The last time they traveled to play an SEC foe on the road they were crushed by South Carolina 34-17 as a 3 point favorite. This time they will have to visit the Auburn Tigers. They are a perfect 2-0 with wins over North Texas and Presbyterian. Auburn is also perfect, but has downed tougher foes in Mississippi State, and Arkansas State. Clemson is going to have to prove they can succeed without star CJ Spiller. This will be their first real challenge without him. This battle of Tigers will be a good one!

Clemson was 2-3 on the road and 2-0 ATS as a road underdog in 2009. They've lost 13 straight against Auburn with the most recent meeting coming in 2007. Auburn was 6-2 at home last year and 2-3 as a home favorite. They were 2-0 as a home underdog. Both teams have changed immensely since last year.

The Clemson Tigers backfield picked up 246 yards against North Texas in the first week of play. Sophomore RB Andre Ellington was unstoppable picking up 122 yards on just 12 carries and 2 TDs. Sophomore QB Kyle Parker had 170 yards and a TD. The offense looks strong, but until they prove they can score against a big time defense we have to be skeptical. The offensive line is top notch with a 2nd Team All ACC member in LT Chris Hairston. Clemson has the best offensive line in the country. Look for them to make sure the running game has holes and the QB is protected.

The Auburn Tigers have a dynamic and deadly weapon in QB Cam Newton. The JC transfer is extremely mobile and hard to tackle. He can throw the ball well too. He rushed for 70 yards and passed for 136 more a TD against Mississippi State. Hardly huge numbers, but against Arkansas State he had 357 total yards and 4 TDs. Playing at home he is more likely to be closer to the latter than the former in terms of stats. Newton is going to be a star this year. 

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Clemson has a defense that brings back 6 starters from last season. They gave up 20.4 PPG last year. Very, very stellar number! Can they do the same against Auburn? It will start with Da'Quan Bowers. The DE must put pressure on Cam Newton. He had 3 sacks last year. Senior SS DeAndre McDaniel is the most important member of the defense. He had a whopping 8 INTs last year and was named 1st Team All ACC. He is one of the best ball hawks in the NCAA. FS Rashard Hall isn't far behind. The sophomore had 6 INTs last year. This is a dynamite secondary.

The Auburn defense has been weak against the run in recent history. They were strong against Mississippi State allowing just 117 yards, but allowed 156 ypg in 2009. The defense has every right to improve with 8 starters back and the top 5 tacklers back. Last year's top tackler was MLB Joshn Bynes. The senior had 104, a sack, and an INT.

This game will be huge for both teams, but especially for Auburn. The Tigers are in the second year with HC Gene Chizik and it looks like they could make some noise in the BCS and SEC. It all starts with a big non conference home win. Cam Newton MUST have a big game for them to win. It's very likely that he will. The 6-6 247 lbs runner can and will make things happen against Clemson. Bank on that.

These two met in a Bowl game back in 2007 with Auburn coming away with a 23-20 win. We see a similar outcome this time around. Auburn had their hands full with Miss State last week and we think Clemson will give them fits as well. The number here should be -3, we're getting a bonus. Clemson +6.5
 

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