The #16 ranked NC State Wolfpack (5-0) travel to South Carolina this weekend to take on the Clemson Tigers (6-0) in an important battle between two undefeated ACC teams. Kickoff is set for 3:30 PM EST at Memorial Stadium and the game will be available on ESPN.
Taking a look at the Week 8 college football odds, Clemson opened as a 17-point home favorite earlier this week. That line has moved by a full point after early betting, as the Tigers are currently listed at -16. The total for the game is sitting at 55.5 points.
Vegas Betting Preview & Game Odds: Clemson vs NC State
NC State moved to 5-0 on the season their last time out after an impressive 28-23 victory over Boston College in early October. QB Ryan Finley had a solid game, throwing for 308 yards and two touchdowns. Finley has now looked quite impressive for five consecutive weeks, racking up 1,621 passing yards and ten touchdowns. He has had a ton of help from the ground game, as the Wolfpack are currently averaging 144.8 rushing yards per game. RB Reggie Gallaspy led the way with 104 yards and a touchdown against the Eagles. WR Kelvin Harmon had a big statistical outing as well, finding the end zone once and adding 128 yards receiving. Harmon recorded over 1,000 yards receiving last season and it looks like he will pass that mark yet again this year, as he is already has accumulated 534 yards. As a whole, NC State is currently averaging 33.0 points per game on almost 500 total yards.
On the other side of the ball, the Wolfpack have done a great job shutting down opposing offenses – they are currently giving up an average of just 16.8 points per game on 341.4 total yards. NC State has been especially strong against the run, limiting opponents to only 107.4 yards on the ground per game (13th overall).
Clemson destroyed Wake Forest 65-3 in Week 7 to improve to 6-0 on the season. The Tigers dominated the Deacons on both sides of the ball for four consecutive quarters, especially on the ground where three separate Clemson backs recorded at least 128 rushing yards. RB Travis Etienne had the biggest day, running for 167 yards and three touchdowns. As a whole, the Tigers are currently averaging 282.8 yards per game on the ground (4th overall). QB Trevor Lawrence has been very efficient through the air for Clemson, as the freshman has racked up 868 yards and 11 touchdowns after taking over for Kelly Bryant. Overall, the Tigers are averaging 42.2 points per game which is currently 14th overall in the FBS.
The Tigers have also looked quite solid defensively, holding opponents to an average of just 14.5 points per game on 261.2 total yards. Clemson has been exceptional against the pass, as opponents are only averaging 152.8 yards through the air per game (6th).
NCAA Football Betting Predictions & Free Pick: NC State +16
This is one of the most anticipated games on the schedule here in Week 8 for a reason – it should be a highly entertaining game between two undefeated ACC rivals. While I’m not expecting the Wolfpack to pull off the upset in this particular spot, the current spread is big enough that there is some value on the NC State side. These teams historically play one another quite tough – the most recent meeting (last November) was only decided by a single touchdown. Both defenses are currently giving up well less than 20 points per game, which makes me feel this contest will likely be decided by fifteen points or less.
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Clemson is only 1-4 ATS over their last five games against teams with a winning record. They are also 0-4 ATS in their last four home games and just 1-4-1 ATS over their last six game in the month of October. NC State is a very solid 7-2-1 ATS over their past ten road games. They are also 4-1 ATS in their last five games against opponents with a winning record. The Wolfpack are also 5-1 ATS over their last six games following an ATS loss and 4-1 ATS in their last five games after a straight-up win.
While Clemson is clearly such a big favorite for a reason, NC State has really held the upper hand against the spread over their last several meetings. The Wolfpack are 6-2 ATS over their last eight games against Clemson, while the Tigers are just 1-5 ATS over their last six home games against NC State. I don’t think the home side will be able to create a three possession gap on the scoreboard by the time the final whistle blows. I’ll take the free points and roll with NC State.