No. 13 Auburn (1-0) at No. 3 Clemson (1-0), Saturday 7 p.m. ET (ESPN) Line: Clemson by 6½.
No. 13 Auburn (1-0) at No. 3 Clemson (1-0), Saturday 7 p.m. ET (ESPN)
Line: Clemson by 6½.
Series record: Auburn 34-14-2.
WHAT'S AT STAKE
Playoff ramifications even though both schools can win their conferences after a loss in this one. Still, with difficult schedules ahead neither Auburn in the Southeastern Conference nor Clemson in the Atlantic Coast Conference wants to put themselves in must-win-the-rest-of-them this early in the season.
Clemson QB Kelly Bryant vs. Auburn's defense led by coordinator Kevin Steele. Steele was Clemson's defensive leader from 2009-11, helping the Tigers win the ACC title. But Steele was let go by coach Dabo Swinney after Clemson was routed 70-33 by West Virginia in the Orange Bowl that year. Steele would love to see his current Tigers shut down his former ones. Bryant had a strong debut as Deshaun Watson's successor at quarterback. Auburn will be a much more difficult test than Kent State.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Auburn: QB Jarrett Stidham, the Baylor transfer, looks like he may solidify a chaotic position for the Tigers in the past couple of seasons.
Clemson: DT Christian Wilkins got only about 20 snaps in the blowout win over Kent State last week and says he's ready to turn it up several notches this week. Wilkins is the linchpin of the Tigers' defense and if he dominates Auburn's line, Stidham will have trouble all game.
FACTS & FIGURES
Six seasons ago, defending national champion Auburn came to Clemson, facing an opponent who few thought was ready to make a significant move forward. But it was the Clemson Tigers who handed the 2010 champs a 38-24 loss and snapped a nation's best 17-game win streak. ... Auburn had won 14 straight in the series through 2010. Clemson has won the past three meetings, including a 19-13 victory at Auburn to start last season. ... Tigers coach Dabo Swinney has 11 wins over SEC opponents, the most by any non-SEC coach since 2008. ... Auburn RBs Kerryon Johnson and Kam Martin are tied for third in SEC rushing, each going for 136 yards against Georgia Southern.