College Football Betting Guide: Monday 9/5/22
The problem with planning Labor Day's new annual tradition of a marquee college football game in advance? It's not always clear what state the programs will be in when the game actually rolls around.
The Clemson Tigers and Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets have dueled for the ACC title within the last decade, but while Clemson is still one of the best programs in the country, Georgia Tech's win total this season is projected at just 3.5 by FanDuel Sportsbook. Yeesh.
This game will be in Atlanta at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, which is a pretty neutral venue for both squads. With Clemson the obvious choice to win outright, can we still find betting value on the spread or total?
Note: All college football odds are from FanDuel Sportsbook. Lines are subject to change throughout the day after this article is published. All ratings are out of five stars. Please check numberFire's model to make sure you're seeing the most updated information.
Clemson -23.5 (-110) - 2 Stars
Our model loves a four-unit wager on the Clemson moneyline (-2800), but if your unit is $20, that bet would net you a profit of only $2.86. Let's not pick up pennies in front of a bulldozer.
Our algorithm still likes taking Clemson's spread here, but this line is moving fast, so tab over quickly.
There's no doubt the Tigers are the better team. They're a preseason top-five squad with one of the best defenses in the country. Their D is ranked second in ESPN SP+ projections. Ultimately, the Yellow Jackets -- with the nation's 64th-best offense, per SP+ projections -- are going to have a tough time scoring.
However, the sweat will kick in when Clemson has the ball. Quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei was a preseason Heisman contender in 2021, but his absurdly poor 34.3% uncatchable pass rate last year showed the accuracy he failed to provide the litany of playmakers the Tigers have.
In this de facto tune-up against ESPN's 111th-ranked FBS defense, Uiagelelei will likely be benched for freshman Cade Klubnik if he struggles again. Whichever quarterback is under center for Clemson likely won't need to shoulder a ton of the load to cover this spread. At least for this week, talented rushing duo Will Shipley and Kobe Pace can do a bulk of the heavy lifting.
Our model believes Clemson covers this spread 61.2% of the time, compared to the 52.5% implied odds of the pick'em bet. It's a two-star bet (two-unit recommendation).