Clemson will face UTSA for the first time in program history Sunday afternoon at the Bon Secours Wellness Arena in Greenville. The game will be the first game of the Men Who Speak Up Main Event in which Clemson will travel to Las Vegas for the MGM Grand Main Event on November 23rd.
The Tigers opened the season with an emphatic 74-40 victory over North Carolina Central in a game where the defense stole the show. Clemson held the Eagles to 30.4% shooting from the field and allowed the fewest points since 2013 when holding Furman to only 35.
With a thin frontcourt rotation, the play of Sidy Djitte was a pleasant surprise scoring 9 points and grabbing 5 rebounds while not missing a shot from the field or the free throw line. Djitte was recovering from a procedure on his knee late in the offseason, but showed little rust moving freely while wearing a knee brace.
UTSA enters the contest 0-1 after dropping their season opener to Loyola of Chicago 76-64. Guard Ran Bowie led the Roadrunners with 16 points, while guard J.R. Harris was the only other Roadrunner in double figures adding 14 points off the bench in 30 minutes of play.
Clemson enjoyed a distinct size advantage in the season opener against NC Central and played inside-out for a majority of the game and will have the opportunity to use this distinct size advantage this afternoon. UTSA utilizes a three guard system and forwards Nick Allen and Lucas O'Brien were largely ineffective in the season opener. Landry Nnoko will have to deal with the size of O'Brien who is 6'10", but only grabbed two rebounds in the season opener.
Jaron Blossomgame and Dante Grantham lead the Tigers in the season opening victory, but we will be looking for the role players to make a larger impact in the second game of the season. Sophomore Gabe DeVoe and Freshman Ty Hudson received significant minutes in the season opener, but failed to make much of an offensive impact before a pair of late 3-pointers from Devoe.
Jordan Roper also had a fairly insignificant scoring start adding only three points in 26 minutes. Clemson will not be able to lean on Blossomgame and Grantham to provide all of the scoring this season and the supporting cast will need to make themselves known and quickly if the Tigers look to continue their early season success.
The game will be broadcast on ESPN3 and the WatchESPN app and can be found on the radio at CTSN. Be sure to sound off in the comments below with your own thoughts and analysis.