"The Auburn Tigers lost this game".
An overwhelming defensive performance and the legs of quarterback Kelly Bryant powered No. 3 Clemson to a 14-6 home win over No. 13 Auburn on Saturday night in Clemson, South Carolina.
"I feel like I'm back at Alabama in 1988 after that one", Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said. "But right now, we didn't get it done".
"It's been a long time since we've played that dominant on defense in a long time". It allowed those 11 sacks in one game after allowing a total of 19 sacks in 13 games last season. "I mean Auburn was making good plays, but our defense was making the tough plays, guarding the perimeter and disrupting the pass".
Westgate Vegas released their spreads on various college football games on Sunday and have Clemson as a 1.5 point underdog against Louisville in Papa John Stadium.
Defensive end Austin Bryant, the fourth member of Clemson's deep talented line led by Christian Wilkins, Dexter Lawrence and Clelin Ferrell, had four of the Tigers' sacks and tied the team's single-game mark.
In total, Auburn managed 117 yards on 66 plays, an average of 1.8 yards per play. Here are three takeaways from Clemson football's 14-6 victory over Auburn.
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Auburn marched down to the 1-yard line in its opening drive behind new quarterback Jarrett Stidham, yet was stuffed at the goal line on third down and instead had to settle for a field goal. That's 4.6 yards a completion. They held Auburn to two first-half field goals until the offense caught up. He came back to lead Clemson's only first-half scoring drive. But it's just a whole different deal to do it under the lights. They probably would have understood if he tried to minimize the number of hits he took from the Auburn defense, which were numerous. Clemson put up 665 yards - 313 of them by Bryant - in a 56-3 victory over Kent State last week.
The Tigers took over at their own 50-yard line following a 9-yard punt return by Ray-Ray McCloud.
The Tigers' national championship run was led by its incredible, dynamic offensive stars in quarterback Deshaun Watson and receiver Mike Williams.
Tonight was Clemson's first true test of the season, and every level of its defense passed with flying colors.
Swinney has now won an even dozen games against SEC competition since taking over as Clemson's coach midway through the 2008 season.
That Clemson defense has a big challenge Saturday, facing Lamar Jackson, Louisville's Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback. I knew it was coming so I tried to look and make sure I don't panic and get a pass interference, because I know that's definitely what teams see from us. "It's a different animal next week going against the Heisman Trophy victor - it's like playing against 12". "No matter what adversity they're going through, they're going to get through it", he said.
Clemson's starting running back had four carries for nine yards and fumbled early in the third quarter in Auburn territory with Clemson driving and set to take control. But Clemson's defense kept Auburn out of the end zone, the visiting Tigers settling for a field goal. Auburn finished with eight tackles for loss. That game will be broadcast on SEC Network.