Some wondered how No. 2 Clemson might play Saturday considering it was a 39-point favorite over Louisville. It did not take the Tigers long to show them.
Clemson scored just 75 seconds into the game and kept scoring in the first half as they rolled to a 35-3 halftime lead.
Travis Etienne rushed for 112 yards and scored one touchdown on seven carries, while Tavien Feaster had a 70-yard touchdown run and ran for 76 yards. Even the defense got into the act as linebacker Isaiah Simmons returned an interception 27 yards for a touchdown.
Quarterback Trevor Lawrence was 7-of-10 for 44 yards and two touchdowns. He did throw one interception.
The Tigers needed just four plays to get on the scoreboard. They took the opening drive of the game 75 yards in one minute and 45 seconds. Etienne capped it with a 10-yard run up the middle for a 7-0 lead with 13:45 to go in the first quarter.
On Clemson’s next possession, Feaster ran untouched downed the middle of the field for a 70-yard score and a 14-0 lead not even three minutes into the game.
After a 25-yard field goal by the Cardinals, the Tigers increased their lead to 21-3 when Lawrence capped an 8-play, 75-yard drive with 14:56 to play before halftime.
On the ensuing possession for Louisville, Simmons picked off Jawon Pass’ high throw on third down and returned it 27 yards for a touchdown and a 28-3 lead with 11:42 remaining in the half.
Lawrence recorded his second touchdown pass of the game with 30 seconds left in the half as he found Amari Rodgers for a 4-yard touchdown run on third-and-two. The Rodgers touchdown capped a 7-play, 60-yard drive.
The Tigers totaled 256 yards in the first half to Louisville’s 138.
The Clemson defense had three sacks in the opening 30 minutes.