NCAAF Clemson Vs. North Carolina Predictions, Picks, Odds (12/3/22)

I can’t think of a more disappointing championship matchup than this one after being billed as a potential playoff quarterfinal a few weeks ago. With Clemson and North Carolina both losing in their last games of the season, this now has no more postseason implications. Still, any football is better than no football and there is money to be made.

Clemson Vs. North Carolina Odds

With both teams limping into the conference championship, oddsmakers still like Clemson’s chance of winning as a sizable favorite. Opening at -7, Clemson has seen their odds jump up and down throughout their last matchup, reaching as high as -8.5 before stepping back down to -7.5.

As for the total, points are expected to be put on the board with UNC fielding a weak defense while both units have decent scoring offenses. Although not at the rate we may expect as the total has crashed to 63.5 after opening at 65.5. This could be in anticipation of Clemson’s defense being able to slow down the high-powered Tar Heel offense, especially for how lackluster they have looked in their last two outings.

Clemson Vs. North Carolina Prediction & Pick

The Pick: Clemson -7.5

While it’s never easy to swallow a bad football number for a favorite, I just don’t see this number getting back down to -7 before kickoff. Especially with this being projected at -10, we may see Clemson steam as the week goes by.

While the Tar Heel offense has been as elite as it gets, they have benefited from a weak schedule against typical brutally bad ACC defenses. Worse yet for UNC, the offense has been falling apart in their last two games, even only scoring 17 in a loss to Georgia Tech.

With Clemson fielding an elite defense, the UNC offense may be in for another long night as sustained drive success will be at a premium against Clemson’s pressure. As a whole, Clemson’s defense ranks 22nd in Def Success Rate and 10th in Def Havoc.

Stopping North Carolina isn’t enough to comfortably win, let alone cover. The Tigers will also need to put up points on their own end. While Dj Uiagalelei has struggled this season, he should find success against one of the worst defenses in football.

Clemson Vs. North Carolina Key Matchups

Can Clemson’s ground game find success against the Tar Heel defense? How will Drake Maye round back into form after two disappointing outings?

Will Shipley vs Tar Heels rush defense

While Dj’s on field production has been a roller coaster while under center, throwing Clemson either in or out of games, Will Shipley has been the lone constant success for the Tigers offense.

Shipley is one of the more dynamic running backs in football, running for 1,092 yards and 14 touchdowns so far this year. Clemson has been fortunate to lean on him for success when Dj is incapable of finding production through the air.

He will be a force to be reckoned with for the Tar Heels as they are one of the worst defenses in football. Even if Dj struggles under center once again, Shipley should find success easy to come by as the Tar Heels rank 120th in Def Rush Success Rate. 

Drake Maye vs Clemson secondary

One of the biggest surprises in football this year has been the sudden rise of UNC quarterback Drake Maye. It was never going to be easy to replicate former quarterback Sam Howell’s success, but Maye has done just that while making a case for the Heisman.

He had an actual claim to the Heisman until his last two performances resulting in losses. He won’t be able to afford a third one as UNC will need all the fire power they can get just to crack Clemson’s defense.

This will be a unit that North Carolina has not been accustomed to as they are one of the better units in football. Especially through the air where Clemson ranks 19th in Def Pass Success Rate and above average in Def Pass Explosiveness. Limiting UNC’s downfield passing attack will once again result in stalled out drives, giving Clemson’s anemic offense to keep scoring pace.

Verdict

Take Clemson at -9.5 or lower in what will be a dominant display by the Tigers. Clemson simply outmatches the Tar Heels and will be able to limit their offense which will be too much for UNC to handle.

Kody is a sports betting writer here at Lineups. Residing in Northern MI his whole life, he graduated from GVSU with a Bachelors in Finance but quickly set his sights on the sports betting industry. He started his career contributing for The Action Network, covering NCAAF/NCAAB/and NFL. Born into Detroit Lions fandom, he knows nothing but pain and false optimism while repetitively telling himself this is our year. That is until they win the Super Bowl this year.

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