The #1 Clemson Tigers (2-0) travel to New York this weekend for an ACC showdown against the Syracuse Orange (1-1). Kickoff is set for 7:30 PM EST on Saturday, September 14th at the Carrier Dome and the game will be nationally televised on ABC.
Taking a look at the Week 3 college football odds, Syracuse opened as a big 26.5-point home underdog earlier this week. That line has moved even higher after early betting, as the Orange are currently listed at +27.5. The total for the game is sitting at 58.5 points.
Vegas Betting Preview & Game Odds: Syracuse vs Clemson
Clemson moved to 2-0 on the season last weekend after an impressive 24-10 victory over #16 Texas A&M. The Tigers certainly had their hands full with the Aggies, especially after their usually potent offense was held scoreless in the first quarter. A&M’s success on defense didn’t last, however, as Clemson scored 17 points in the second quarter en route to a huge home win. QB Trevor Lawrence was 24/35 for 268 yards and two touchdowns, while Lyn-J Dixon led the way on the ground with 79 rushing yards on just 10 carries. WR Justyn Ross had a big game through the air, racking up seven receptions for 94 yards and a touchdown. As a whole, the offense put up almost 350 total yard of offense and made three trips to the end zone.
The Tigers defense played extremely well against the Aggies, limiting the offense to less than 300 total yards and just one touchdown. Clemson was especially effective against the run, as no Texas A&M rusher had more than 35 yards or averaged more than 3.4 yards per carry.
Syracuse had their most embarrassing loss of the past several years in Week 2, getting crushed 63-20 on the road against Maryland. The Orange fell behind 21-7 in the first quarter and never recovered, allowing the Terrapins offense to rack up almost 600 total yards and nine touchdowns. The only bright spot for Syracuse was the play of QB Tommy Devito, as he was 28/39 for 330 yards and three touchdowns. He didn’t get a lot of help from the ground attack, as no rusher scored a touchdown or gained more than 50 yards. WR Trishton Jackson certainly did his part in the lopsided loss, hauling in seven passes for 157 yards and two touchdowns.
The Orange defense was obviously horrific in Week 2, as Maryland gained almost 300 total yards on the ground and through the air. Their rush defense was almost non-existent, as four seperate Terrapins players recorded at least one rushing touchdown.
NCAA Football Betting Predictions & Free Pick: Clemson -27.5
My expectations for this usually highly entertaining ACC Atlantic matchup are much lower this year, as Syracuse looks like they have taken a huge step back this year. There is simply no excuse for how bad they looked against Maryland in Week 2, especially defensivley. While I certainly expect them to play a little bit better on Saturday, the Tigers offense can put up plenty of points in a big hurry. Lawrence has plenty of talented receivers in the passing game while Lyn-J Dixon could have a field day against a horrible Orange rush defense. While the Syracuse offense was at least average against the Terrapins, they simply don’t have the weapons to keep pace with the high-flying Tigers here in Week 3.
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Another important thing to note about the Syracuse offense is how one-dimensional their attack has been through the first two games of the season. Yes, Tommy Devito was much improved against Maryland, passing for more than 300 yards and recording three touchdowns. However, the only other Orange player who made any sort of impact in Week 2 was Trishton Jackson. If a tough Clemson defense can successfully key in on Jackson and reduce his impact on the game, it will likely be a very long afternoon for Devito and the rest of the offense. Ultimately, I think the Tigers should be able to win this one by 4+ touchdowns, so I’ll lake the points and take the road favorite to cover.