Both the No.12 Clemson Tigers and No.7 Ohio State Buckeyes had hopes of playing in this year’s BCS National Championship Game. The two teams will have to settle for playing in the Orange Bowl. It’s expected to be one of more competitive BCS bowl games, with the Buckeyes favored by less than a field goal.
Below are a few things to know about the 2014 Orange Bowl.
Both Ohio State and Clemson were projected to reach BCS Bowl games, before the start of the 2013 college football season. In the preseason, the Buckeyes were named one of the favorites to compete for a national championship, earning the No.2 ranking behind only Alabama. Clemson began the year at No.8 and were expected to finish first in the ACC.
Ohio State went undefeated in their first season under Urban Meyer, but was unable to compete in a bowl last year because of sanctions. Prior to that, they had played in the postseason every year in the new millennium, with a .500 record in those games. They’ve only appeared in the Orange Bowl once, defeating Colorado in 1977.
The Tigers have been very consistent with their bowl appearances, playing a game after the end of the regular season in all but one year since 1999. The school hasn’t had much success in recent bowls, losing eight of their last 13. They did manage to win last year, beating LSU in the Chick-fil-A Bowl when Chandler Catanzaro hit a game-winning field goal as time expired. It hasn’t been a long time since the Tigers last played in the Orange Bowl. They lost to West Virginia in the 2012 version of the contest.
Orange Bowl In The 2000’s
Fans who are looking to see a close game are hoping history does not repeat itself. Many of the recent Orange Bowls have been blow outs. The last three matchups were decided by an average of just less than 29 points, and 2008 was the last time the Orange Bowl saw a team won by one score. The last 14 games have seen 14 different winners. The Florida State Seminoles made the most appearances in that time, going 1-3.
TV And Online Info
ESPN will show the game on national television at 8:30 p.m. ET. A free live stream will be available online with WatchESPN. In 2013, 10 million people Florida State beat Northern Illinois 31-10. Last year, the Orange Bowl was out-rated by the Cotton Bowl, but both will be on at the same time on Friday.
Both teams average over 40 points per game, so this has the possibility of being a very high-scoring affair. The over/under is 71 at most Las Vegas casinos, and it has been rising throughout the week. Clemson, though, wasn’t as effective on offense when facing elite teams. They averaged 15.5 points in losses to Florida State and South Carolina, as Tajh Boyd was picked off four times. With Braxton Miller and Carlos Hyde, Ohio State has a more balanced attack and should be able to pick up the victory.
Predicted Score: Ohio State 37, Clemson 27