Clemson Football

Instant Analysis: No. 1 LSU 42, No. 3 Clemson 25

January 13, 2020

New Orleans, L.A. –- Clemson’s 29 game winning streak came to a halt in the same stadium where they suffered their last defeat. The Tigers were outpaced offensively by LSU in a matchup of the top two teams in America.

Clemson’s offense came out with a flurry of big plays, staggering the SEC Champion’s in the first quarter. Both sets of Tigers exchanged punts twice, with Brent Venables’ defense holding LSU to six yards on their first to cracks at the defending national champions.

On Clemson's third drive, the Tigers broke through, scoring on a one-yard Trevor Lawrence touchdown run. Clemson moved the ball quickly 67 yards on five plays for the opening touchdown seizing the early momentum.

From there, Clemson worked their way to a 17-7 lead after a four-play, 96-yard scoring drive.

After that, the first half was all LSU as the Heisman Trophy winner, Joe Burrow, got cooking. The home-state Tigers ripped off scoring drives of 75, 87, and 95 yards just before the break, giving LSU a 28-17 lead at the half.

Clemson had their chances in the second half, but LSU was steady all night, knocking off Clemson 42-25 in the 2020 National Championship Game.

The game was over when…

Heading into halftime with a 28-17 lead, it felt like LSU was on the brink of blowing the game wide open. However, to open the second half, Clemson’s defense forced a quick three-and-out, and the Tiger offense raced 50 yards on six plays, tacking on a two-point conversion to get cut the LSU lead to just three at 28-25.

After that, Clemson forced another quick three-and-out, but the Tigers couldn’t capitalize. That would be the story of the night as the Clemson's offense converted just one third down all night long.

LSU took the ball back, marched right down the field to take a ten-point lead at 35-25.

As the fourth quarter started, LSU delivered the dagger with an eight-play, 57-yard drive when Burrow found Terrace Marshall in the endzone giving the Bayou Bengals a 42-25 lead with 12:08 left in the game. 

Clemson Sports Talk
Jordan Williams tries to bring down Joe Burrow in the backfield. Clemson lost its first game since 1-1-2018, 42-25, in the 2020 National Championship Game.

They stole the show...  

LSU’s Joe Burrow was simply fantastic against Clemson’s secondary. The Purple and Gold Tigers took advantage all night long finding match up after match up in the downfield passing game striking Clemson’s secondary for huge plays.

Burrow finished the night 31-of-49 for 463 yards and five touchdowns, blistering the Tigers secondary. 

In the locker room, Trevor Lawrence said that he was, “Happy for LSU. They played a hell of a game.”

Matchup of the game…

LSU’s wideouts were overmatching Clemson’s defensive backs throughout the game. Time and time again, Burrow found favorable matchups, picking on several Clemson defensive backs.

The Tigers had their chances, perhaps most notably when Nolan Turner dropped a potential interception in the third quarter. Clemson was never able to rattle Burrow, which allowed him to feel comfortable throughout the game.

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Instant Analysis: No. 1 LSU 42, No. 3 Clemson 25

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