College Football Picks: Clemson vs. NC State

Jeff Grant

Monday, September 16, 2013 12:52 PM GMT

Monday, Sep. 16, 2013 12:52 PM GMT

The Clemson Tigers haven’t enjoyed much success when featured on ESPN Thursday Night games, but that may change when taking on the NC State Wolfpack.

Let’s take a closer look at the college football odds for this ACC matchup at Carter-Finley Stadium, with the opening kickoff scheduled for 7:30 p.m. ET.

Off to another strong start

Clemson is 2-0 for the fourth straight season—marking the first time in school history that a senior class has accomplished such a feat. 

The Tigers are a dominating 65-0-1 SU when gaining 500-plus yards in a game—a number that should definitely be reached due to racking up 754 yards versus the Wolfpack in a 62-48 victory as 15-point home favorites last year.

Doeren has delivered 

NC State is 2-0 SU and 1-1 ATS in the first two games of the Dave Doeren’ era, which includes a 23-21 win over Richmond as 23.5-point home favorites on Sept. 7, while going UNDER the total in both contests.

It’s important to point out that Doeren has never lost at home as a head coach, while he hasn’t tasted a defeat in front of the home fans as a member of any coaching staff in 1,434 days.

Thursday nights 

College football handicappers may think twice about backing the Tigers as road favorites in this affair, as they’ve lost nine of 11 when featured on ESPN Thursday Night games, but seven of those losses have come against ranked foes.

Clemson is 2-0 SUATS as road favorites of 10.5 to 14 points the last two-plus seasons, with the UNDER going 5-1 in that situation dating back to 1992.

Youth movement 

The Wolfpack have proven victorious against a Top 10 team at home in each of the previous two seasons, but this team is very young heading into Week 4 of the 2013 college football campaign.

NC State has had 14 players earn their first career start at the collegiate level this season, while it is tied with three other schools in playing the sixth-most true freshmen in the country.

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Prediction 

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Tigers with their college football picks, as the road team is 13-3 ATS in the last 16 meetings in this series.

Senior Taj Boyd returns should have a huge game facing a defense that hasn’t recorded an interception to this point, as he accounted for a school-record of 529 yards of total offense in last year’s meeting.

College Football Pick:  Clemson Tigers -14

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