Louisville Cardinals (11-3, 1-0) At No. 25 Clemson Tigers (13-1, 2-0)
Game Time: 12:06 p.m.
Location: Littlejohn Coliseum: Clemson, S.C.
Television: ACC Network/Wave-3 in Louisville
Announcers: Pete Yanity (play-by-play) and Dan Bonner (analyst)
Officials: James Luckie, Mike Eades, A.J. Desai
Favorite: Clemson by 6
Probable Starting Lineups:
Series: Louisville leads, 5-1
Last Meeting: Louisville won 92-60 on Jan. 19, 2017 in Louisville
For the first time since 2009-10, the Clemson Tigers are nationally ranked, checking in at No. 25 in both the AP and coaches polls. Clemson also owns the current distinction of being No. 10 in the RPI.
The Tigers enter Saturday’s game ranking 30th in the nation in field goal percentage (.492) and 22nd in scoring defense (63.1). Senior forward Donte Graham, who passed 1,000 career points on Dec. 22, is one of four players in the nation who averages at least 14.5 points, 6.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game while shooting at least 60 percent from the field. He has hit 153 career three-pointers and is one of six players in Clemson history to amass at least 1,000 points, 500 rebounds and 200 assists in a career. All five of Brad Brownell’s starters average double figures in scoring.
—Louisville has won its first conference road game in nine of the last 10 seasons.
—Louisville is second in the nation in blocked shots (7.9 bpg) and ranks 17th in field goal percentage defense (.382) and 43rd in scoring defense (65.4). Center Anas Mahmoud is fourth in the nation in blocked shots (3.93).
—A win for Clemson would give the team its first 3-0 start in ACC play since 2006-07.
—The Tigers are 1-5 all-time against Louisville, but 1-1 in home games. Clemson defeated the Cardinals two seasons ago in a game played at the Bon Secours Wellness Arena in Greenville, S.C., the team’s temporary home while Littlejohn Coliseum was under construction.
—Louisville has not defeated a ranked opponent away from home since joining the ACC. The Cards’ last road win over a top 25 team was at SMU in 2014.
—Quentin Snider needs 43 points to become the Cardinals’ 68th career 1,000-point scorer.
—Clemson head coach Brad Brownell is off his best 14-game start to a season in his career.
—Brownell and Penn State’s Pat Chambers are the only major conference coaches in the country to have the same job since 2011 despite not making the NCAA tournament over that span. The Tigers made the field of 68 in Brownell’s first season on the job, 2009-10.
—Clemson is one of only three teams in the country to have a perfect record over the last two Decembers (13-0), joining Purdue and West Virginia (Chris Forman, Purdue).
—Louisville is one of just four schools which have won 20 or more games in each of the last 15 seasons (also Kansas, Duke and Gonzaga)
—Louisville has a 40-17 record during the month of January over the last eight years, including a 24-8 record in the last five years.
—U of L has an 18-9 record all-time in games played on Jan. 6.
Ken Pomeroy Prediction: Clemson 72, Louisville 65