NCAA Football Underdog Pick of the Week: Louisville/Clemson

Joe Gavazzi

Saturday, October 11, 2014 1:37 PM UTC

Saturday, Oct. 11, 2014 1:37 PM UTC

Today, this College Football handicapper inspects the double digit underdog of the Louisville Cardinals, who he predicts will have an outright victory over the Clemson Tigers.

Louisville Cardinals vs. Clemson Tigers (3:30 ET ESPNU)
My UNDERDOG of the week is now 6-0 ATS after Nebraska fought back with a 19 point 4th quarter in a 27-22 loss, but cover, as 7 point pup at Michigan St. last week.  Although some may consider that to be more lucky than good, there was never any question about the 1st five of those victories.  Four of which were outright upsets as double digit pups.  

Certainly can’t knock the performance of Clemson either on this field or in the last two weeks.  For the season, the Tigers are 3-0 SU ATS at home, outscoring SC St., N. Carolina and NC St. by a combined margin of 164-42.  That includes 41-0 vs. NC St. last week, when Clemson used a balanced offense for a 493-156 yardage edge and parlayed that with a +3 net TO margin for the win.  In the last 2 weeks, behind newly inserted Clemson QB Watson (8 TDP and over 700 PYs L2W), Clemson has looked like the best team in the ACC.  That makes the Tigers on current spread runs of 8-2 and 4-0 ATS.  It also pumps up the line to double digit status in a matchup where Louisville would have clearly been the road favorite opening week for College Football picks.  

Yet, the Cardinals have done little wrong.  Most notable are their defensive numbers which are a carryover of last season.  This year, under newly installed DC Grantham, the Cards have among the best defenses in the land, allowing just 13 PPG, 230 YPG, and 3.8 YP play.  No one has scored more than 23 points against Louisville all season!  But, HC Petrino is best known for his offense.  For the YTD, Louisville is averaging 33 PPG on a respectable 388 YPG.  That figures to improve dramatically, as two of their key offensive players return to full health.  WR DeVante Parker (foot) is upgraded to probable for this game.  In addition, injured starting QB Will Gardner (knee) has now been listed as available to return to action for the weekend.  With RB Radcliffe turning in a pair of 100 yard performances and frosh signal caller, Bonnafon, authoring solid numbers in place of Gardner, it would appear the Cards are ready to soar offensively.

Combined with the fact that Louisville is on a 8-1 ATS run as underdog L3Y, stands 12-1 ATS on the road vs. ACC teams, and is 10-1 ATS vs. greater than .500 foes, gives all the support we need for this Defensive Dandy.  It will be no surprise if Louisville wins this game outright.

Free College Football Picks: Louisville Cardinals at Bwin

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