Clemson 24, South Carolina 23

The way it works

The tradition-rich Braggin’ Rights Barometer predicts what to expect from a mythical Clemson-South Carolina game each week leading up to the actual Braggin’ Rights clash on Nov. 26 in colorful Columbia. The toolbox includes computers, game analysis, special teams contributions and very good guessing.

The set-up

The BRB flips for the first time this season and, at this point, the Gamecocks better be glad the Clemson game is hard by the Fairgrounds. Yes, South Carolina has added almost NFL-ready Jadeveon Clowney since last November’s win at Death Valley. But Clemson has added Sammy Watkins, Chad Morris and D.J. Howard, plus the new marquee role for Tajh Boyd. You just don’t run 86 plays and pile up 455 yards against Florida State without being pretty good. South Carolina showed against Vanderbilt that with Marcus Lattimore and that defense, the worst-case scenario is an ugly win against mediocre teams. Is Auburn mediocre?

The vibe

For one, for all, 4-0. And it’s OK to look ahead, No. 13 Clemson at No. 11 Virginia Tech, and unranked Auburn at No. 10 South Carolina and way beyond; that’s what the BRB is all about. So how about this: We are talking about a good chance of the Gamecocks and Tigers going into Nov. 26 with the highest combined ranking ever (the record is No. 12 South Carolina defeating No. 8 Clemson, 20-7, in 1987).

Previous scores

Last week: USC 31, Clemson 30

Sept. 12: USC 41, Clemson 28

Sept. 5: USC 38, Clemson 28

Preseason: USC 28, Clemson 14