Louisville Cardinals at Clemson Tigers – NCAAM January 27

No. 23 Louisville (10-3, 5-2) at Clemson ( 9-4, 3-4)

Time: 6 PST – 8 CST – 9 EST
Place: Littlejohn Coliseum, Clemson, S.C.
TV: ACC Network

Opening Tip:

Louisville is back in the Top 25 after Saturday’s win over Duke. The Cardinals are sitting only two games back of Virginia from the top spot in the ACC.

It’s been a nightmare for the Tigers since returning from COVID-19 protocols. They beat NC State, 74-70, on Jan. 5 and then had three games canceled only to return on Jan. 16 where they took an 85-50 pounding from Virginia. Clemson has lost three in a row since the pause by an average of 24 points per game.

Louisville leads this series, 7-3, but lost, 77-62, last season in Clemson.

Vs. The Spread

Louisville:

  • The total has gone over in 4 of the Cardinals’ last 5 games
  • The Cardinals are 3-6 ATS in their last 9 roadies
  • The Cards are 6-2 SU in their last 8 games

Clemson:

  • The Tigers are 0-4-1 ATS in their last 5 games
  • The OVER has been the play in Clemson’s last 6 games
  • The total has also gone OVER in 4 of the last 5 Tigers-Cardinals contests

Last Time Out:

Carlik Jones scored 19 of his 24 points in the second half as the Cardinals handed Duke it’s third straight loss, 70-65, at the KFC Yum! Center on Saturday. He scored Louisville’s last nine points in the final two minutes, including the go-ahead layup which put the Cardinals ahead 66-65 with 1:18 to play. Jae’Lyn Withers added 13 while David Johnson and Dre Davis scored 12 and 11 points each.

Clemson fell, 80-61, at Florida State as the Tigers had seven turnovers and only 4 made shots int he first half. They trailed the streaking Seminoles by 38 points midway through the second half. John Newman, III, led the Tigers with 12 points.

Teams Spread Money Line Total Points
Louisville +1½ (-105) -110 O 129½ (-110)
Clemson -1½ (-115) -130 U 129½ (-110)

Cardinals Stat Pack:

  • Louisville has won the battle on the glass eight times this season and it has produced an 8-0 record in those games. The (+6.3) rebounding advantage in the ACC is second in the league wile the (+5.4) margin is third in ACC play.
  • David Johnson has fixed his turnover issues as he has 22 assists and 11 turnovers in his last three games while totaling 29 and 29 in the first seven.
  • While Carlik Jones ranks third in the ACC in scoring at 18.4 points per game, he is also getting it done on the defensive end with 13 steals in the last five contests.

Cardinals Grease Board:

Louisville Cardinals LogoMost games come down to turnovers and three-point shooting and Louisville will look to get it’s 3-ball game in order in Littlejohn as the Tigers allow 36.7 recent from opponents behind the arc. The Cards haven’t shot it effectively, only 32.7 percent but Carlik Jones (38.1% -3) and David Johnson (42.6% -4) are two options that can get in a rhythm and be productive.

In addition, coach Brad Brownell may show the Cards some matchup zone to try to slow the tempo and keep them out of transition. The Cardinals are doing so well off the dribble, though, that Clemson guards Al-Amire Dawes and Nick Honor have to challenge Jones and his perimeter mates at the point of attack as the Cards have only averaged 12.3 per game with Jones as a judicious ball handler with a 2-to-1 assist to turnover ration (57-to-29). The Cardinals have gotten to the line 60 times over the last three games where they have shot 75 percent in those three.

Tigers Stat Pack:

  • Clemson has overcome halftime deficits three times this season and if the Tigers can right the ship, the total of six in a season is in the crosshairs.
  • Tigers leading scorer Amir Simms is 11-of-26 from the field in averaging just 8.7 points and 5.0 rebounds per game in his last three games.
  • The defense has been in a tough place since the covid pause as Virginia, Georgia Tech, and Florida State combined to average 82.7 points and 54.7 percent from the field in those games.

Tigers Grease Board:

The Tigers have to restart and get back to being themselves. Coach Brownell’s defense has probably never had such a horrid three-game stretch. Controlling the tempo tonight will be a definite key for the Tigers. Getting big man Amir Simms (11.3 ppg, 5.8 rpg) situated in the paint is a must as a matchup with Jae’Lyn Withers is definitely a challenge for Clemson.

On the defensive end Simms has to play within himself because if he gets into foul trouble, there’s no one behind him who can challenge Louisville at the basket, off the dribble or to Withers and potentially Samuell Williamson or Quinn Slazinski.

Winner: Louisville (+1½) 69, Clemson 66
O/U: Take OVER 129½

The Bets
Louisville +1½
+110
OVER 129½
-110
Sub Categories:
Kenneth Cross / Author

Kenneth Cross is a new entry to The Sports Geek staff as he has 25 years of experience in print, broadcast, and internet sports journalism. Cross is a lover of all sports, but college basketball is his passion. He estimates that he has seen around 1,500 college basketball games - live and in-person - and hopes that grows this season. If you listen to Radio, you have likely heard him on Sundays covering the Carolina Panthers for some 20 years. Now in Tampa Bay, he works as a national radio correspondent.