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Early Preview – Virginia

Posted by cuorange on July 29, 2009

Game 11 – November 21, 2009 – Death Valley, Clemson, SC

Record O St Rtng Pts/Gm O Yds/Gm O D St Rtng Pts/Gm D Yds/Gm D
5-7 5 16.1 300 6 21.7 333

This was one ugly game last year with the Tigers winning 13-3 in the rain at Charlottesville.

There is a definite talent discrepancy between the two teams and playing in Clemson gives the Tigers even more of an advantage.

The Cavs have experience and depth at QB with Jameel Sewell returning from academic difficulties, while Mark Verica gained valuable experience in ’08. Verica completed 63.8% of his passes, but had 16 INTs and only 8 TDs. The wild card is CB Vic Hall who started at QB vs. Virginia Tech and exceeded 100 yards on the ground.

Leading rusher Cedric Pearman (774 Yds, 5.1 Avg, 7 TDs) is gone. Mikell Simpson who was held to 262 Yds by injuries in ’08 does return, but you get the feeling that the Cavs will really miss Pearman.

The Cavs lose their top 5 receivers (including Pearman) and the WR/TEs figure to be a hole that this team will have a tough time filling.

The good news is 4 starters return on the OL and the Cavs are going to need it to improve on their 97 yards per game rushing totals from ’08.

Only one starter is lost off the defensive line that gave up 150 yards rushing per game and totaled 29 sacks. That experience should lead to a reduction in rushing yards given up and an increase in sacks.

Three of four starting linebackers depart leaving huge holes at LB. Inexperience and just above average talent means that this unit is probably going to be a liability unless someone steps up.

On the flip side, 3 of four defensive backs return and they also get former starter Chris Cook back from academic difficulties. This should be a good group.

The Skinny:Clemson has the advantage in almost every area, except maybe the OL (and that is debatable) and the Tigers are playing at home. I can’t see Virginia scoring enough to win.

Early Conclusion: Clemson recovers from the loss to FSU. After a sluggish start the Tigers get in high gear and run away with the game.

Clemson 37 Virginia 13

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