For the first time since 2011, a team other than Clemson or Florida State will be crowned ACC champions. Find out where we lean in our Pittsburgh versus Wake Forest picks.
The Panthers are looking for their first-ever ACC Championship and are playing in just their second title game after joining the conference from the Big East. The Wake Forest Demon Deacons are making their first appearance in the conference championship since 2006 when they defeated Georgia Tech. So which team will have its name slotted into a New Year’s Six Bowl as champions of the ACC?
Pittsburgh has won four straight games by an average of 14.8 points. The Panthers are tied for the third-best against-the-spread record in the country, covering in nine of their 12 games.
Wake Forest lost two of its final four games to end the regular season. The Demon Deacons have identical 6-6 ATS and Over/Under records.
Here are my picks and predictions for the ACC Championship Game matchup between Pittsburgh and Wake Forest. (Odds via DraftKings; pick confidence based on a 1-to-5 star scale).
Pittsburgh vs. Wake Forest Game Info
Date/Time: Saturday, Dec. 4, 8 p.m. ET
Location: Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, NC
Weather: Partly cloudy
Pittsburgh vs. Wake Forest Odds Analysis
Wake Forest opened at many sportsbooks as a -2-point favorite. However, the line has drastically swung and jumped the fence to where Pittsburgh is currently a -2.5- to -3.5-point favorite.
All sportsbooks are unanimous on the O/U, with the total currently sitting at 72.5 points. As it stands, that is the highest total of any game Pittsburgh has been involved in this year. The previous high was 72 in a game against North Carolina that stayed well Under the total with 53 combined points scored.
Pittsburgh vs. Wake Forest Picks
Pittsburgh -3 (+100) ★★
Under 72.5 (-110) ★★★★
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Pittsburgh vs. Wake Forest Predictions
Pittsburgh -3 (+100)
Wake Forest became the third school in ACC history to score 500 or more points in a season, joining Clemson and Florida State. They have the advantage at quarterback in most games, as Sam Hartman scored 44 total touchdowns this year. However, one could argue that Pittsburgh has the upper hand under center with Kenny Pickett in this game. Pickett ranks fifth in the country with 4,066 passing yards and a 166.7 passer rating compared to Hartman's 155.8.
Pittsburgh will be motivated to win its first-ever ACC Championship in its initial appearance in the title game. The Panthers come into this week with much more momentum than the Demon Deacons and often rise to the occasion against stiffer competition, going 5-1 ATS against teams with winning records this season.
Under 72.5 (-110)
Wake Forest ranks third in the country in scoring at 42.9 points per game, while Pittsburgh owns the fourth-highest scoring offense at 42.8 ppg. It would seem blasphemous to back the Under in a game between two teams with so much scoring potential, but we love the contrarian aspect of this play.
These two teams have played a combined four games with projected totals in the 70s and the Over has cashed just once. The Panthers have held seven of their last nine opponents under 30 points and they know that a game that turns into a track meet favors the Demon Deacons. Pitt's defense stood tall against North Carolina's high-powered offense and allowed just 16 first downs despite being on the field for more than 34 minutes.
The Under is 5-2 in Wake Forest's last seven neutral site games as underdogs. Throw in the nerves factor with both teams looking to make history and that is a perfect recipe for a lower-scoring game than most anticipate.
Picks made 11/29/2021 at 7:46 p.m. ET