We’ve got an ACC matchup as the Clemson Tigers head to New York to do battle with the Syracuse Orangemen. While Clemson isn’t at the level we’ve come to expect over the past decade, this still comes into this contest as almost two-touchdown favorites. Let’s take a closer look at this game to see if we can find our NCAAF pick.
Clemson Tigers vs. Syracuse Orange
Friday, October 15, 2021 – 07:00 PM EDT at Carrier Dome
Not the Same Old Clemson
Clemson's program has built itself into a national powerhouse since head coach Dabo Swinney took over midway through the 2008 season. Since then, he has amassed an impressive 143-35 record which is why having two losses too early in the season is not the standard we've come to expect.
In fact, by starting off the season 2-2, Clemson was already effectively out of the college playoff picture before the end of September. That said, this is still a team full of pride and a coach that will not accept anything less than the best.
They come into this game against Syracuse as 13.5 point favorites according to the NCAAF odds. That's not that surprising since Syracuse is coming off two consecutive losses. Add to that the fact that Clemson had last week off which means rest for guys that were banged up and more practice reps for coach Swinney to make the necessary corrections to right the ship.
The total in this game is 45 at most of the top-rated sportsbooks. This total does seem quite low for a contest involving Syracuse. The Orangemen's last two games had a total of 77 and 63 points. They also had a game earlier this season with a total combined score of 86 against Albany.
Over Might Have Some Value in This Spot
There are a few reasons why I think this total is way too low. First of all, I do not think Syracuse can stop Clemson from getting into the high twenties or low thirties. I also think Syracuse's ground game means that they can stay in this one. They certainly won't have success passing the ball against this Clemson secondary.
The thing is, Clemson's pass rush is not great and that's where Syracuse can find a little bit of success.
With play action at his disposal, Garrett Shrader can have a little bit of success. Remember, this is a running team and a very good one at that. Their quarterbacks, both Tommy DeVito and now Garrett Shrader are more game managers than leaders of their offense. While their running game is good, their offensive line has shown weaknesses in some games. They weren't great against Florida State or Rutgers.
Since Clemson has no pass rush, I think a combination of a solid run game with some play-action mixed in can get the Orangemen into the mid-teens or even low twenties.
For these reasons, my pick for this game is the Over 45 which is available at .
NCAAF Pick: (visit our Bovada Review)
*The pick reflects the line at the moment the writer made the play, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Since the lines might vary, don’t forget to refer back to our live odds.