After an emotional win against Miami, FSU basketball looks to extend their winning streak in Clemson, South Carolina, against another rival.
Going into the contest, Florida State has won the last five games in a row but lost both matchups against the Tigers last year. Of the last five times these two teams tipped off, the Seminoles have won twice.
Key players for the Seminoles include Primo Spears (23), recently debuting in Garnet and Gold due to an NCAA transfer eligibility situation for which his waiver was accepted. He has quickly come into form to catalyze the Seminoles offense, averaging 11.3 points for the season so far and eclipsing double-digit points in eight of nine games.
Florida State is 7-2 in games in which Spears has been able to contribute, including this current run of five straight wins. He quickly has become a weapon coach Leonard Hamilton turns to when his team needs points. Other key players include Jahmir Watkins (2), Baba Miller (11), Darin Green Jr. (22), and Cam Corhen (3).
Watkins leads the team in points per game, rebounds, assists, and steals. Miller, a lanky and athletic seven-foot forward, leads the teams in blocks and can affect the game beyond the score sheet by stretching the floor on offense and using his length to aid the team's defense. Green Jr., a reliable shooter from behind the three-point arc, Corhen, a spark off the bench, and creative point guard Jalen Warley (1) round out the top five contributors for this team. De'Ante Green (5), also starts and provides valuable minutes.
As I turn to the Clemson Tigers, their run of form has been the opposite of the Noles, starting the season strongly but winning only one game of the last five. Their top players include center PJ Hall (24), Joeseph Girard III (11), and Chase Hunter (1). They average double-digit points per game, with Hall leading the team with 20 ppg.
Hall also leads the Tigers in steals and blocks while shooting 33 percent from the three-point arc. Another key contributor for Clemson is Ian Schieffelin (4), who leads the team in rebounds and is decimal points away from averaging a double-double. The Tigers' downturn is likely attributed to their struggles from three-point land.
Despite Clemson's recent losses, they are slightly favored over the Seminoles on ESPN with a 53.3 percent chance to win. Yahoo Sports, however, favors Florida State by three points, citing Coach Hamilton's system as a difference maker.