Clemson Defense Will Rise to Challenge Against Georgia Tech

clemson georgia tech

Willie Bee

Tuesday, October 24, 2017 2:05 PM GMT

Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017 2:05 PM GMT

Anxious to get back on the field after their first loss of the season two weeks ago, the Clemson Tigers are 2 TD home favorites on the NCAA football odds vs. Georgia Tech for Saturday's ACC game.

NCAAF Season Record: 20-25-1 (-5.50)

Free NCAAF Pick: Clemson -14½Best Line Offered: Heritage

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Two weeks have passed since the No. 7 Clemson Tigers suffered their only loss of the season. Two long weeks without a game to play and get back into the swing in their quest for a second straight National Championship. The wound has festered and healed and scarred over by now, and the wait is almost over with a visit from the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets this Saturday.

ABC’s cameras will be on hand at Death Valley when Clemson and Georgia Tech get their ACC showdown underway at 8 PM (ET). The layoff isn’t expected to hurt the Tigers, at least not according to SBR’s top-rated sportsbooks who have them laying 14½. The scoreboard target is 48½, one of nearly 20 games on this week’s board with a sub-50 total.

 

Bryant Back At QB, But Etienne Is Doubtful For The Tigers

Paul Johnson’s gang just might be the best 4-2 team out there, both losses coming away from home and by just one point to Tennessee and Miami. The Yellow Jackets bounced back from the setback to the Hurricanes with a 38-24 win over Wake Forest, easily covering a -3 home line as TaQuon Marshall executed Johnson’s option to near perfection. Marshall and KirVonte Benson have provided the lion’s share of the ground game that has Tech second in the nation averaging nearly 373 rushing yards per game, setting up a key battle in this contest against a Clemson defense that is 13th against the run (107.8 ypg).

The Tigers were 23-point favorites on the NCAA football odds at Syracuse on that fateful Friday the 13th evening, and the defense allowed a season-high 162 yards rushing. Dabo Swinney watched his offense struggle to move the chains – 2-for-11 on 3rd-down conversions – and lost the possession battle to the Orange by about 10 minutes. Quarterback Kelly Bryant went out with a concussion, but he has been cleared to play this Saturday. Top tailback Travis Etienne also left the Syracuse game early with a strained hamstring, and the freshman is questionable for this one.

 

Rivalry Trends, Mother Nature & A Free Pick

Georgia Tech holds the 50-29 lead in the series, with two games going into the books as ties, but Clemson has won and covered the last two, and four of the last five meetings. The Tigers completely stuffed the Yellow Jackets option attack the last two seasons, limiting the Rambling Wreck to under 170 rushing yards in the two games combined. The last three games on this field went past totals in the 52- to 71-point range.

The long-range forecast calls for rain Saturday afternoon and evening, temps in the low-to-mid 50s for most of the contest. Both teams have been friends to ‘under’ bettors this year, and this could turn into a low-scoring affair, but I’m laying the points with my free college football pick.

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