We look for betting value with Clemson's visit to Louisville next Thursday. These two teams are heading in opposite directions, so who should we back with our college football picks?
(12) Clemson vs. Louisville - Thursday, September 17, 7:30 PM ET
Undefeated Clemson heads into Louisville who has failed to register a win yet this year. The line has boomed up to Clemson -6 and the total is 51.
Clemson did some real nice things against a not too bad FCS opponent App State. Deshaun Watson threw three touchdown passes with two in the second quarter from 59 and 24 yards out, and Carlos Watkins came up with a pick six on the way to a 31-0 halftime lead. Watson’s third touchdown pass came on a 41-yard Artavis Scott catch in the third. The Tigers cruised from there. Appalachian State finally got on the board with a field goal in the third, and got in the end zone on a one-yard Barrett Burns catch in the fourth.
How can we sum out the entire outlook of Clemson's young team? It wasn’t a perfect game, but it was close. Appalachian State was able to run a little bit, but it has one of the Sun Belt’s star ground games that’ll tear up just about everyone. Fortunately, the Tiger D was able to overcome a few problems with four takeaways and limiting the Mountaineers from going on long drives.
As long as Watson is rolling like he did, the Tigers will bomb their way to wins. Watson completed 19-of-26 passes for 248 yards and three touchdowns with a pick, and he ran for 17 yards. With Mike Williams done, the passing game spread it around a bit more. Charone Peake caught four passes for 86 yards and two scores, and Artavis Scott caught six passes for 73 yards and a score. Nine penalties for 75 yards and two turnovers for the Tigers was the only negative last Saturday.
Louisville is Really Struggling
Now let's examine Louisville, which has taken a turn for the worst with Bobby Petrino at the helm. He is 100% on the hot seat and things don't get any easier when Clemson rolls to town. Let's look at the misfortune of the Cardinals as they lost as nearly 14 point favs at home vs. Houston.
Greg Ward Jr. threw a 15-yard touchdown pass to Demarcus Ayers in the fourth quarter to give Houston the lead for good. It was a see-saw fourth quarter with each team trading shots, but Louisville couldn’t answer. Louisville was right there all game long – neither team led by more than a score. Lamar Jackson ran for a touchdown and threw for one, but just when the Cardinals appeared to be taking control in the third quarter after a 36-yard John Wallace field goal, Brandon Wilson returned the kickoff for a score.
The Cardinals came up with a late Kyle Bolin touchdown pass to Micky Crum late, but Houston went 75 yards in eight plays for the winning drive. The Cardinals are lacking a clutch defense to pull off a win so far in this season. Louisville has to be asking itself first and foremost... Where’s the running game? The Cardinals are getting some interesting plays out of their quarterbacks, and Lamar Jackson is going to be great, but no one’s taking off and no one’s able to come up with big dashes. Mistakes were disastrous. Houston played well, but the four Cardinal turnovers and nine penalties helped lead to the upset. It’s not time to panic, but Louisville is 0-2 with Clemson up on Thursday night.– Lamar Jackson completed 17.of-27 passes for 168 yards and a score with two picks, and Kyle Bolin completed 10-of-18 throws for 157 yards and a touchdown.
Micky Crum caught six passes for 103 yards and a score. The running game has a nightmare stat going of them: The Cardinals averaged just 2.7 yards per carry. All of the stats mentioned above point easily to a road win by Clemson. Louisville is in extreme danger of starting the season 0-3. This seems more and more likely with the lack of a running game and a terrible defense along with a terrible coach in Petrino. We look for Dabo Swinney and the fiesty Tigers to have no probems dispatching Lousiville, even on the road, so back Clemson at -6 college football odds with your college football picks.
College Football Picks: Clemson -6 at BetOnline