Countdown to kickoff: Clemson tries to keep Eagles from flying high at Death Valley

Countdown to kickoff: Clemson tries to keep Eagles from flying high at Death Valley

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Countdown to kickoff: Clemson tries to keep Eagles from flying high at Death Valley

Georgia Southern at No. 2 Clemson

Second-ranked Clemson returns home to Death Valley on Saturday as it hosts Georgia Southern for the first all-time meeting between the two programs. Kickoff from Memorial Stadium is scheduled for noon. The game was originally scheduled to kick off at 3:30 p.m., due to Hurricane Florence.

Game information:

Where: Memorial Stadium, Clemson

Records: Clemson 2-0, Georgia Southern 2-0

When: Saturday, Noon

TV: ESPNU

Radio: 105.5 in the Upstate (Clemson Tigers Radio Network); Sirius XM Radio Ch. 108

Latest Line: Clemson (minus-32)

Series: first meeting

Three story lines

While all football coaches preach the importance of ball security, it may be at a premium on Saturday, as Clemson (zero) and Georgia Southern (one) have combined for only one turnover this season. Clemson enters the week as one of only five schools with zero turnovers this season. Of those five schools, Clemson is one of only three to have already played two games this season (LSU and Tennessee).

Saturday’s game could also feature strength against strength. Georgia Southern ranks fourth in the FBS with 326.5 rushing yards per game, while Clemson has allowed only 94.0 rushing yards per game. Clemson held both of its first two opponents to 2.2 yards per attempt.

Clemson will try to extend its winning streak in nonconference regular season play to 18 games. Dating back to 2014, Clemson’s current 17-game winning streak in regular season non-conference games is the longest such streak in program history.

Georgia Southern players to watch

Shai Werts, QB: So far this season, he has rushed for 246 yards and four scores while throwing for 183 yards and two scores. For his career, he’s rushed for 1,112 yards and seven touchdowns while throwing for 968 yards and nine scores.

Wesley Fields, RB: He has 2,158 rushing yards and 16 touchdowns for his career to go along with 27 catches for 365 yards and four scores. He became the 18th player in school history to eclipse the 2,000-yard mark for their career against South Carolina State in the opener.

Wesley Kennedy, WR: The sophomore slot receiver has proven to be a dynamic threat in several areas of the game. The Savannah native has 26 yards rushing, 100 yards receiving, 47 yards on punt returns and 143 yards on kickoff returns for a total of 316 all-purpose yards.

Georgia Southern scouting report

Georgia Southern is 1-9 all-time against current members of the ACC (1-4 vs. Miami; 0-2 vs. Georgia Tech, North Carolina and NC State; 0-2 vs. Florida State).

The Eagles are 26-12 all-time playing in the state of South Carolina and 63-24 against teams from the Palmetto State. However, this is the first time they have played Clemson.

Georgia Southern has lost its last 11 road non-conference games since shocking Florida 26-20 in The Swamp to end the 2013 season. Georgia Southern has yet to win a road non-conference game as a member of the FBS, which the Eagles joined in 2014.

Tight end Ellis Richardson’s father, Chuck, played linebacker at Clemson on the 1981 national championship team and his brother, Chris, played defensive end for Clemson’s football team from 2007-2010. Defensive coordinator Scot Sloan was a defensive back for the Tigers from 1988-‘91, winning an ACC title in 1991.

The Georgia Southern defense has allowed just one explosive play (20+ yards) this season.

Quarterback Shai Werts has accounted for six touchdowns this season (four rushing, two passing).

Georgia Southern has been assessed just five penalties in two games this season.

The Eagles have not allowed a point in the fourth quarter this season.

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