Since the release of the first two playoff rankings, paired with second-ranked Clemson and No. 1 Alabama’s utter annihilation of conference opponents, everybody is talking about a potential rematch in the College Football Playoff.
The Crimson Tide shut out No. 7 LSU a week ago and the Tigers dominated Louisville 77-16 in an ACC contest as both teams remained undefeated. The convincing wins have the teams on a collision course for their fourth meeting in as many years.
Danny Kanell made an appearance on FS1’s “First Things First” Thursday morning as a guest college football analyst and talked very highly about Clemson as the only team who can give the Tide a run for their money. He thinks Clemson matches up well defensively against Alabama’s high-powered offense.
“This is about Clemson and giving them credit. I think Clemson’s defense is better than Alabama’s,” Kanell said.
Kanell also pointed out the return of Christian Wilkins, Clelin Ferrell and Austin Bryant is added motivation to face the Crimson Tide.
“These potential first rounders on the defensive front from last year, they came back and have had Alabama circled on their schedule saying we want to finish with something special,” Kanell said. “That’s something that is being completely slept on. If you’re Dabo you say, keep on talking about Alabama.”
Vegas has Clemson as an eight-point underdog in a potential matchup at a neutral sight, ironically around the same number as the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship Game. Kanell is not overly concered with the hypothetical spread because of the Tigers’ freshman quarterback Trevor Lawrence.
“I think Clemson’s offense is almost just as good, specifically since they made one change at quarterback to Trevor Lawrence,” Kanell said. “Trevor Lawrence since he has taken over, they scored 63, 49, 59 and 77 points, this offense is as good as it gets. I wouldn’t say their offense is as good as Bama’s just yet, but I think if you look at the entirety of the teams they are right there.”
Before any hypothetical playoff scenarios play out, Clemson travels to Chesnut Hill, Mass. facing No. 17 Boston College with an opportunity to clinch the ACC’s Atlantic Division at 8 p.m. on Saturday night.