LOUISVILLE, Ky. — With the exception of one drive, second-ranked Clemson owned the first half as it took a 19-7 lead into the locker room against No. 14 Louisville at Papa John’s Stadium in Louisville, Ky.
Quarterback Kelly Bryant was 17-of-27 for 238 yards and one touchdown, while the defense limited Louisville quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson to 8-of-20 passing for 83 yards and one touchdown.
Jackson did run for 47 yards in the first half, but the Tigers sacked him twice.
Clemson wide receiver Ray-Ray McCloud has seven catches for 115 yards, including a 79-yard bomb from Bryant that gave the Tigers a 16-7 lead with 4:06 to play in the opening half.
The Tigers finished the opening half with 334 total yards, while holding Louisville to 154 yards. The Cardinals were 0-for-6 on third down. Clemson was 6-for-12.
After stopping Jackson on the game’s opening drive, Clemson went on a 10-play, 79-yard scoring drive for the game’s first touchdown. Bryant capped the drive with an 8-yard run with 9:45 to play in the first quarter.
The touchdown was set up when Bryant found Renfrow for a 40-yard gain. Bryant was 4-for-4 for 53 yards on the drive and ran twice for 11 yards.
Jackson and the Cardinals tied the game late in the first quarter when he scrambled and found tight end Charles Standberry in the end zone for an 11-yard touchdown with 4:22 to go in the first quarter. That capped a 95-yard scoring drive that took just three plays.
Clemson regained the lead with 6:57 to play in the second when kicker Greg Huegel made a 31-yard field goal for a 10-7 advantage, it was his first of the season.
The Tigers scored again on the next possession as Bryant found Ray-Ray McCloud streaking down the near sideline wide open for an easy touchdown.
Huegel again connected on a 49-yard field goal this time, a career long, with 28 seconds left to play in the first half for a 19-7 advantage.