Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence scoring against Ohio State. Jan 1, 2021; New Orleans, LA, USA; Clemson Tigers quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) rushes for a touchdown against the Ohio State Buckeyes during the first quarter at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Russell Costanza-USA TODAY Sports

The Clemson Tigers (#2 in both the College Football Playoff rankings and the AP poll) wasted no time getting out of the blocks against the No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes in Friday night’s Sugar Bowl semifinal. The Tigers received the opening kickoff, which Travis Etienne fielded at the Clemson three and ran to their 18. Then, Tigers’ quarterback Trevor Lawrence found Etienne through the air for gains of 11 and 26 yards, and after a Lin-J Dixon run for five and an incomplete pass, Lawrence hit Cornell Powell for 27 yards, giving Clemson first and goal from the five. Etienne rushed for three yards on first down, and then Lawrence took it in himself on a two-yard run to the right:

Here’s the earlier 27-yard catch from Powell on third down, which came just in bounds and was key to setting up this TD:

That’s a good start for the Tigers, and it also led to Etienne setting a Clemson record for career receptions by a running back:

The Tigers then got a stop on Ohio State’s first possession, but then had to punt themselves, and the Buckeyes then tied it up with a Trey Sermon TD run on their next drive. We’ll see where this game goes from here for Clemson. But Lawrence’s touchdown certainly got them off to a strong start.

[ESPN; photo from Russell Costanza/USA Today Sports]

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz has been covering sports media for Awful Announcing since 2012. He is also a staff writer for The Comeback. His previous work includes time at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.