College Football Picks, Predictions, and Previews: The Way It Oughtta Be

Ohio State vs. Clemson 1/1/2021 College Football Picks, Prediction, and Preview

The Ohio State visits Clemson on 1/1/2021 at 8:00PM.

Ohio State and Clemson face off in a Bowl Game. Yes, it is the truncated postseason of College Football leading up to the College Football Playoff Semifinals. Ohio State has a record of 6-0 this season. Clemson is 0-1 this season. Both have players to meet and know.

Ohio State Team Defense Preview

Ohio State has had 70 defensive drives in non-garbage time minutes and they yield 4.6 plays per drive. Relatively speaking, Ohio State is not a team that allows many plays per drive. This defense either gives up big plays quickly or induces a lot of three-and-outs, we shall find out more. Opponents face third and long situations a lot against this defense. This is a defense that forces opponents to commit penalties, have compromised offensive line play, and fail to convert on crunch possessions. Ohio State opponents pass the football 60.56% of the time.They are a team that faces a lot of Air Raid Offenses.

Ohio State opponents have struggled with running the ball and this defense has crushed the spirits of their opponents with zero or negative yard plays. 4th and Short is not a cake walk against this defense, maybe passing on 4th and Short or having some sort of RPO is the way to go here because if an Offensive Coordinator thinks that they can just line and run a Quarterback Sneak or hand it off to a tailback, they are mistaken. How effective are opposing offensive lines given what we know about their ability to force negative yardage rushing plays? Ohio State can take credit for holding the offensive line of their opponent to 2.2 yards per carry. Opponent offensive lines have been simply unable to support their running games against this defense. When it comes to getting to that second level, running backs are getting stopped. This defense does not allow themselves to be gashed. Opponents have shown a relatively average level of explosiveness in the running game, maybe there will be a breakout rushing play against them.

Ohio State has made the turnover belt, chain, pads, lunch pail or whatever gimmick they use change hands a lot. This is a Defense that causes pure aggravation. Getting more specific, this front seven is a cause of a lot of headaches for offenses. They may be good enough to cause trouble in pass rush with just four rushers!Ohio State is better at stopping the run than the pass this season.

Ohio State Team Offense Preview

Ohio State has had 66 total drives this season and they generate 5.98 plays per drive. When you are among the best at plays per drive, you are certainly a team that aims to wear down the opposition with a high play count or with long, physical grinding drives that eat up a lot of clock. We need to find out more here when it comes to Ohio State. Any defense is in for a challenge with Ohio State, given their ability to accrue more than 5 yards on 1st Downs and their ability to convert on 3rd and 4th Downs. They put a lot of pressure on opposing defenses.Passing plays make up 43.29% of their play calls.They favor running the ball as opposed airing it out.

Move the pile forward, falling forward, making progress, ensuring north-south running, smart Quarterback reads, well-adjusted alignments to ensure leverage, and an offensive line that is getting a great push forward are cornerstones of this offense. How effective is the offensive line given what we know about their ability to prevent negative yards on rushing plays? More than you think, thanks to the Adjusted Line Yards metric. Ohio State can take credit for 3.66 yards per carry. This is an elite offensive line when it comes to generating a push for the running game. They know how to create creases for running backs to break loose. Playing 7 in a box may not be enough for opposing defenses, this is a great O-Line. The offensive line and running back corps deserve a lot of credit for gashing defenses with their running game like the way they have this season. They have an explosive running game and they are capable of breaking big yardage runs on First and Second Down. This puts a lot of pressure on Linebackers and Safeties.

Defenses have had average success disrupting the flow of the Ohio State Offense. Front sevens are causing an average amount of trouble for the Offense. Ohio State is a better passing team than running team this season.

Clemson Team Defense Preview

Clemson has had 114 total defensive drives this season and they yield 4.53 plays per drive. Relatively speaking, Clemson is not a team that allows many plays per drive. This defense either gives up big plays quickly or induces a lot of three-and-outs, we shall find out more. Opponents face third and long situations a lot against this defense. This is a defense that forces opponents to commit penalties, have compromised offensive line play, and fail to convert on crunch possessions. Passing plays make up 52.91% of their opponents’ play calls.Clemson tends to face teams that prefer to air it out or opponents want to air it out against them.

Clemson opponents have struggled with running the ball and this defense has crushed the spirits of their opponents with zero or negative yard plays. 4th and Short is not a cake walk against this defense, maybe passing on 4th and Short or having some sort of RPO is the way to go here because if an Offensive Coordinator thinks that they can just line and run a Quarterback Sneak or hand it off to a tailback, they are mistaken. Opponent rushing yards attributed to their offensive line this season comes out to 2.2 yards per carry. Opponent offensive lines have been simply unable to support their running games against this defense. When it comes to getting to that second level, running backs are getting stopped. This defense does not allow themselves to be gashed. The breakout rushing plays are simply not happening, it is a massive reach to expect this team to give up big rushing plays.

Clemson has made the turnover belt, chain, pads, lunch pail or whatever gimmick they use change hands a lot. This is a Defense that causes pure aggravation. Clemson should have a sign ready for opponents near the Visitor Locker Room that says “Welcome to Hell”, this front seven is deep and they cause a lot of problems. Clemson is better at stopping the run than the pass this season.

Clemson Team Offense Preview

Clemson has had 119 total drives this season and they generate 5.4 plays per drive. There is not much to take away here when it comes to how many plays per drive they run, but they are a team that falls in the average window when it comes to plays per drive. Any defense is in for a challenge with Clemson, given their ability to accrue more than 5 yards on 1st Downs and their ability to convert on 3rd and 4th Downs. They put a lot of pressure on opposing defenses.Passing plays make up 57.17% of their play calls.This is an Air Raid Offense team, they are going to pass the ball a lot and running plays are only used to keep opponents honest.

On first downs, getting ahead of the chains is crucial and running the ball well on first down can get a team there, Clemson has done a good job avoiding the negative yardage rushing plays. How effective is the offensive line given what we know about their ability to prevent negative yards on rushing plays? More than you think, thanks to the Adjusted Line Yards metric. Clemson can take credit for 3.11 yards per carry. This offensive line may be underappreciated, even though the running backs get the attention. The Clemson coaching staff really deserves credit for how they prepared this offensive line, but they could be a little bit better! This is a team that is rather above-average when it comes to gashing defenses. The threat of the run should force opposing to play more honest and assignment defensive football is a must. They are capable of busting out a long run, which is really good when the team has the ball in their own territory.

Defenses have had trouble making big, disruptive plays against Clemson this season. There has been a relatively good job done by this Offensive Line to prevent opposing front sevens from causing problems consistently. Clemson has shown themselves to be a better running team than passing team this season.

The Ohio State Roster

The Players to Watch for Ohio State

Justin Fields QB 6-3 228

This season, Justin Fields has put up 1521 yards and 15 touchdowns. He has thrown 5 interceptions. He has a QB Rating of 174.6thus far this season. Justin Fields has thrown 5 interceptions this season.As a rusher, Justin Fields has 274.0 rushing yards, which puts him in the 89.55 percentile among Quarterbacks. He ran the ball as opposed to throwing the ball 67.0 times this season, which puts him in the 85.82 percentile. Has he hit paydirt as a runner? He has 5.0 rushing touchdowns this season.

Trey Sermon RB 6-1 215

This season, Trey Sermon has 675 rushing yards on 84 carries. Was he able to get to the end zone on the ground? He has 3 rushing touchdowns.As a receiver in the backfield, Trey Sermon picked up 34 yards. He caught the ball as opposed to taking handoffs or catching laterals 8 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 0 receiving touchdowns this season.

Garrett Wilson WR 6-0 193

This season, Garrett Wilson picked up 621 yards. He caught the ball 38 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 5 receiving touchdowns this season.

Tommy Togiai DT 6-2 300

The leading tackler among Defensive Tackles for Ohio State, Tommy Togiai has 19 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 4 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 86.96 percentile among Defensive Tackles. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 3 times this season, which put him in the 95.0 percentile among all Defensive Tackles in College Football. He has forced 0 fumbles this season.

Jonathon Cooper DE 6-4 257.0

The leading tackler among Defensive Ends for Ohio State, Jonathon Cooper has 20 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 2 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 62.04 percentile among Defensive Ends. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 2 times this season, which put him in the 79.19 percentile among all Defensive Ends in College Football. He has forced 0 fumbles this season.

Marcus Hooker S 5-11 200.0

He is the leading tackler among non-exclusive Defensive Backs (meaning he can play either Safety Position, Nickel Back, Star or even play as a Cornerback in coverage) for Ohio State, Marcus Hooker had 15 tackles which puts him in the 51.98 percentile among returning non-exclusive Defensive Backs. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 0 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 31.11 percentile among Secondary position players. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Marcus Hooker as a ball hawker was able to pick off 1 passes this season, which puts him in the 81.65 percentile among returning secondary position players this season.

Marcus Williamson CB 5-10 186

Considered the leading tackler among Cornerbacks for Ohio State, Marcus Williamson had 22 tackles which puts him in the 72.51 percentile among Corners. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 0 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 33.29 percentile among Corners. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Marcus Williamson as a ball hawker was able to pick off 0 passes this season, which puts him in the 35.08 percentile among Corners this season.

The Clemson Roster

The Players to Watch for Clemson

Trevor Lawrence QB 6-6 220

This season, Trevor Lawrence has put up 2753 yards and 22 touchdowns. He has thrown 4 interceptions. He has a QB Rating of 172.7thus far this season. Trevor Lawrence has thrown 4 interceptions this season.As a rusher, Trevor Lawrence has 211.0 rushing yards, which puts him in the 85.67 percentile among Quarterbacks. He ran the ball as opposed to throwing the ball 58.0 times this season, which puts him in the 82.24 percentile. Has he hit paydirt as a runner? He has 7.0 rushing touchdowns this season.

Travis Etienne RB 5-10 210

This season, Travis Etienne has 882 rushing yards on 158 carries. Was he able to get to the end zone on the ground? He has 13 rushing touchdowns.As a receiver in the backfield, Travis Etienne picked up 524 yards. He caught the ball as opposed to taking handoffs or catching laterals 44 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 2 receiving touchdowns this season.

Amari Rodgers WR 5-10 210

This season, Amari Rodgers picked up 966 yards. He caught the ball 69 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 7 receiving touchdowns this season.

Nyles Pinckney DT 6-1 295

The leading tackler among Defensive Tackles for Clemson, Nyles Pinckney has 19 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 3 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 78.26 percentile among Defensive Tackles. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 1 times this season, which put him in the 70.43 percentile among all Defensive Tackles in College Football. He has forced 0 fumbles this season.

Myles Murphy DE 6-5 265.0

The leading tackler among Defensive Ends for Clemson, Myles Murphy has 34 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 9 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 96.53 percentile among Defensive Ends. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 4 times this season, which put him in the 92.77 percentile among all Defensive Ends in College Football. He has forced 3 fumbles this season.

Nolan Turner S 6-1 205.0

He is the leading tackler among non-exclusive Defensive Backs (meaning he can play either Safety Position, Nickel Back, Star or even play as a Cornerback in coverage) for Clemson, Nolan Turner had 51 tackles which puts him in the 92.88 percentile among returning non-exclusive Defensive Backs. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 6 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 98.52 percentile among Secondary position players. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Nolan Turner as a ball hawker was able to pick off 3 passes this season, which puts him in the 97.61 percentile among returning secondary position players this season.

Andrew Booth Jr. CB 6-0 190

Considered the leading tackler among Cornerbacks for Clemson, Andrew Booth Jr. had 24 tackles which puts him in the 75.69 percentile among Corners. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 3 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 97.51 percentile among Corners. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 1 times this season. Andrew Booth Jr. as a ball hawker was able to pick off 2 passes this season, which puts him in the 92.13 percentile among Corners this season.

Ohio State vs. Clemson Prediction, Picks, and Odds


Prediction: Ohio State 26 Clemson 28

Spread Pick: Ohio State +7.5 -122 Pinnacle Sports
Moneyline Pick: Clemson -289 Pinnacle Sports
Total Pick: Under 67 -109 Pinnacle Sports