Halftime Hits: No. 2 Clemson 17, No. 3 Ohio State 0
GLENDALE, Ariz. — Punters are people too!
Andy Teasdall has a 67-yard punt, the longest of his career and tying the longest by a Clemson punter in bowl history equaling Banks McFadden’s boot in the 1940 Cotton Bowl. His Ohio State counterpart, Cameron Johnston, is averaging 48.0 yards a punt.
Somewhere, Ray Guy beams.
But more to the point of why you clicked on this link, Clemson is dominating Ohio State in the desert with a commanding 17-0 lead at the orange slices. The Tigers are 30 minutes away from a rematch with Alabama in the title game.
C.J. Fuller has an incredible sliding catch for a 30-yard touchdown catch, Deshaun Watson has a 1-yard scoring run and the Tigers have rolled up 275 total yards on the third-ranked defense in the country.
The Tigers’ defense has been outstanding: OSU’s ninth-ranked rush offense has 11 carries for eight yards. In all, do-everything Curtis Samuel has 10 touches for 38 yards, and the rest of the Buckeyes have accounted for 50 yards on 20 plays.
Both of Ohio State’s best players have been on special teams: Johnston has a robust average on five punts, while Parris Campbell has kick returns for 32 and 54 yards. Entering tonight, Clemson only allowed four kickoff returns of 30 yards or longer, and just one of more than 40 yards.
Mike Williams has slipped to the turf twice, which is about the only thing stopping in his College Football Playoff debut. He has four grabs for 70 yards, including an impressive one-handed swipe on the sideline.
Clemson has hung in there in the rushing game, with 78 yards on 19 carries. Watson recorded a winding 33-yard run to set up the Fuller touchdown.
The Tigers have turned it over twice, but their defense stood up both times to allow no points. OSU kicker Tyler Durbin has missed field-goal attempts from 45 and 47 yards.
Clemson has five tackles for a loss, including a pair by Clelin Ferrell.
The Tigers are receiving the second-half kickoff.