Things have not gone well for Clemson so far tonight. The Tigers trail 13-0, and are very lucky that the score isn't worse, as two Ohio State drives have stalled deep in Tiger territory. The loss of star wide receiver Tee Higgins doesn't help matters.
Early in the game, the Tigers lost one of their best playmakers as well. Higgins had his helmet knocked off on a downfield pass, and was on the wrong end of a collision with Buckeye star Jeff Okudah.
He left for the locker room after the play. The suspicion is that he suffered a concussion on the play, but it hasn't been confirmed.
ESPN initially indicated that Tee Higgins might be out for the remainder of the game. While that feels likely as of now, Clemson says that it does not yet know for sure whether he can return or not.
Higgins caught one pass for 21 yards before leaving the game. Entering the game, he had 52 catches for 1,082 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns on the season. If he can't return, its a huge blow for the Tigers, even with their elite receiving depth.
Clemson's offense as a whole hasn't figured things out yet. Trevor Lawrence is 7-for-11, but for a pedestrian 70 yards. The bigger issue is that Travis Etienne has been held to 13 rushing yards on four carries, while his Ohio State counterpart J.K. Dobbins has 144 yards and a score on just seven carries.
Clemson's red zone defense, and Ohio State's inability to punch it in, has been the one saving grace for the ACC Champions. The Buckeyes have settled for three field goals, and lead 16-0 in a game that could be much, much worse in the first half.
Clemson official says he does not have confirmation Tee Higgins is out for the game, despite ESPN's comments.
— Matt Connolly (@MattatTheState) December 29, 2019