By the Numbers: No. 3 Clemson at Boston Colllege

Clemson v Boston College at Memorial Stadium in Clemson, SC Saturday, October 17, 2015.

The third-ranked Clemson Tigers travel to Chestnut Hill, Mass., where they will visit Boston College at Alumni Stadium today. The game will be televised by ESPN and will kick off at 7:30 p.m.

Here are five numbers to note as third-ranked Clemson prepares to take on Boston College in Chestnut Hill on Friday night…

7: Consecutive wins in true road games for Clemson. One more win at Boston College on Friday would tie the school record of eight set in 1979. The current streak dates back to the Louisville game at the beginning of the 2015 season. The Tigers’ average margin of victory in those contests is 16.6 points per game, albeit boosted by a 58-point beatdown administered to Miami that accounts for half of its total margin in road games during the streak. Along those same lines, the Tigers have won back-to-back visits to Boston College by a combined 18 points.

50.9: Percent of passes completed for Boston College quarterback Patrick Towles this season. Among 13 qualifying quarterbacks in the ACC, that is by far the worst percentage (Georgia Tech’s Justin Thomas doesn’t have enough attempts). In fact, no quarterback is within six points of Towles’ bottom-of-the-barrel completion percentage. Granted, the Kentucky transfer’s numbers are skewed downward by a disastrous 9-for-28 passing game at Virginia Tech, but the Hokies are the one squad out of the five he has faced that best resembles the Tigers. Clemson’s defense leads the ACC in opponents’ quarterback rating (90.3) and ranks fifth in the conference in passing yards allowed per game.

60: Years since Clemson played a regular season game on Friday night. That day has been historically reserved for high school football, but the ACC has a role to play in Friday football due to the league’s most recently negotiated deal with ESPN. The most recent Friday tilt came on November 16, 1956 against Miami—a game the Tigers lost, 21-0. Ironically, the most recent Clemson win on a Friday night during the regular season came in Boston against the Eagles by a score of 13-0 on Halloween 1952. Clemson’s Orange Bowl win over Ohio State in 2014 did come on a Friday, and the Tigers have played 43 times on Friday nights in program history.

90: Combined tackles for loss for these two teams. In recent history, both Clemson and Boston College have stayed among the nation’s leaders in that category. In fact, in 2015, the Tigers and Eagles finished first and second in the country, respectively, in tackles for loss. Clemson registered a nation-best 126, while Boston College had 114 and led the nation with an average of 9.5 per game. This season, the Tigers rank second in the country, behind only Texas A&M’s 50. Boston College, meanwhile, sits in a tie for ninth place, and both squads rank inside the top three in the ACC. There may be plenty of negative yardage plays in this matchup if both defenses have a say.

222: Average yards per game against ACC opponents for Boston College this season. Those two performances came against Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech, and one was decidedly better than the other. The Eagles were balanced against both squads, but they were much more successful against the Yellow Jackets in Ireland. They scored 14 points in that contest, but they were shut out in Blacksburg against the Hokies. In that game—the most recent for Boston College against a Power 5 opponent—the Eagles only gained 124 yards, including 40 on the ground. That’s an average of only 2.2 yards per play. Just for future reference, Clemson’s defense is allowing 4.1 yards per play this season.

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