Given how the rest of the ACC has looked, it may be smooth sailing the rest of the way for Clemson until a trip to Boston College in November. The Tigers scraped past Texas A&M a couple weeks ago and that could end up being their toughest Game. Georgia Tech is at home, yet it’s lost its last two Games to mediocre competition in USF and Pitt. The Tigers were -17 point road favorites as of Tuesday with an over/under of 50.5 at 5Dimes Sportsbook.
Clemson surprisingly didn’t run away with this Game last year, winning only 24-10. The Yellow Jackets got enough out of their defense and ran for 4.6 yards per carry and that kept the clock moving. If they can do that again, that could be enough to get another cover. But with how the defense has looked, it’s a wonder if they can hold Clemson to 24 points again.
The Tigers still don’t know who their top quarterback is, but that may not matter until the College Football Playoff. Trevor LAwrence has three more passing touchdowns and almost one more yard per attempt, but Kelly Bryant is completing more of his passes and is more mobile with 125 rushing yards. Neither should have a problem in this Game and that goes for running back Travis Etienne, who is averaging 7.7 yards per carry with Four touchdowns. The last time Tech played a balanced offense, it gave up 48 points to USF.
Covering for GT will come down to what the triple-option can do and for the most part, it has struggled scoring just 17 points in the last two meetings with Clemson. against a defensive front that features a slew of future NFL players, it’ll be hard to bet on the Yellow Jackets reaching 198 rushing yards as they did in 2017. Of course, 65 of those came from one run so without that they managed less than 3.2 yards per carry. When asked to pass more, TaQuon Marshall hasn’t been up to the task, already with Four interceptions, including one in the 41-0 win against Alcorn State. The loss of top running back KirVonte Benson doesn’t help either, though Tech always has talented backs in the waiting with Jordan Mason and Tobias Oliver both getting plenty of work alongside Marshall.
All signs point to a Clemson blowout in this Game, but it’s hard to ignore that it’s only scored 50 points in the last two meetings. Then again, if Clemson wins 24-7, that’s still a push. The bonus for the Tigers is that they still have two quarterbacks fighting for playing time and that could push their point total higher.
The Tigers haven’t covered in their last Four and are 3-8 ATS vs. a team with a losing record. The Yellow Jackets are 7-2 ATS in their last nine at home, but haven’t covered in their last five overall. The home team is 6-1-1 ATS in the last eight meetings between these schools, though Clemson is 4-1-1 ATS in the last six.
Our Pick – Clemson -16.5