NC State at Clemson Line
The 11th-ranked Clemson Tigers host the NC State Wolfpack Saturday afternoon in ACC action. Oddsmakers have listed Clemson as a 17-point favorite and have set the total at 64.0.
Why Clemson Covers
The Tigers are tearing it up. They are 9-1 and have won six in a row by an average of 25.2 points. They are 8-2 against the spread on the season and have covered the number in each of their seven games against conference opponents.
Clemson is unbeaten at home where it is 5-0 with a 26.2-point averaging margin of victory. NC State, meanwhile, is just 2-3 on the road and 0-4-1 against the spread in these games. The Wolfpack are on a 0-6 against the spread slide in road games when playing them on six days’ rest or fewer.
Clemson is the superior offensive team. It ranks sixth in the country in scoring with 42.9 points per game while NC State ranks 72nd with 26.6 points per game. The Tigers rank seventh in total offense with 513.8 yards per game while Wolfpack rank 59th with 407.8 yards per game.
The NC State defense ranks 98th in the country against the pass with 259.2 yards allowed per game. Clemson’s 12th-ranked passing attack, which averages 322.1 yards per game, should have no trouble moving the ball through the air on the Wolfpack.
Quarterback Taj Boyd has completed 68.0 percent of his passes for 2,941 yards with 28 touchdowns and just nine interceptions.
Why NC State Covers
The Wolfpack defeated Florida State 17-16 earlier this season. That win is significant because the Seminoles are the only team that has defeated Clemson this year. They defeated the Tigers 49-37. If NC State can hold the Seminoles to 16 points, it can slow down Clemson’s explosive offensive attack.
NC State won last season’s meeting 37-13 at home as a seven-point underdog. It lost the last time it visited Clemson (Nov. 6, 2010) but only by one point (14-13). It has either won or lost by eight points or less in 11 of the past 15 meetings. The road team has covered the spread in six of the last seven meetings, and the underdog is on a 6-2 against the spread run in the series. The Wolfpack are 6-1 against the spread in their last 7 meetings at Clemson.
The Wolfpack have been a reliable investment when catching points since Tom O’Brien took over as head coach. They are 26-16 against the spread as an underdog under his watch and have only lost these games by an average of 5.0 points. It is also worth noting that they are 23-13 against the spread under O’Brien when matched up against a team that has a winning record. They have been defeated by only 2.1 points on average in these games.
NC State has lost two of its last three games, but it is 6-0 against the spread over the last three seasons when checking into a game with losses in two of its last three contests. It has won by an average score of 34.4 to 18.4 in this situation.
The Wolfpack are 13-5 against the spread all-time under coach O’Brien when checking into a game with losses in two of their last three games.