Now that the turkey has settled, it’s time for some football. The ACC gives us eight games, six of which are in-state rivalries. It’s the best weekend in college football and we’ve got you covered. Head over to Draftkings Sportsbook and check out the action.
All season long, I’ve been picking against the Cardinals determined they’re not very good. And while I still think they’re not as good as their record indicates, they’re better than Kentucky. I’m going to plug my nose and lay the points. Therefore, you know what to do.
Pick: Louisville -7.5
Pittsburgh Panthers @ Duke Blue Devils
Duke -5; Over/Under 41
I’ve seen Duke play UVA in person each of the last two years and there was a noticeable difference in the version I saw last week as opposed to the one I saw the year before. Sure Riley Leonard makes a big difference, but that defense just looked off. Pitt isn’t going to wow anyone with their offense, but unless the Blue Devils channel their early season tenacity, there will be plenty of points in Durham.
Pick: Over 41
Syracuse is not a very good team. As a result they fired head coach Dino Babers. Honestly, I was surprised his record was only 41-55 as he seemed to to have that program decent more often than not. They can still go bowling and I expect a spirited effort. It won’t take much as Wake Forest struggles to score and has difficulty stopping anyone. That’s a bad combination.
Pick: Syracuse -2.5
It’s been 25 years that I’ve been in love with Virginia football. I was a sophomore in high school when Ahmad Hawkins capped an unforgettable comeback with a touchdown catch from Aaron Brooks, the photo cemented in UVA lore forever, and have only seen two more wins since. That’s a lot of scar tissue. Both teams are playing much better in the second half of the season, but the handicap is simple. This will be a close game that will come down to a turnover or sack late in the game. I’ve seen this movie too many times and know that late play is likely to come in Tech’s favor. Though it pains me...
Pick: VaTech -2.5
The eyes of the college football world are going to be watching in Gainesville seeing Florida State perform without Jordan Travis. I get it, he means a ton to this FSU team, but it would be a shame to have the Seminoles win out and be left out of the College Football Playoff, something I’ve heard is possible, even likely. I would understand if there are four other undefeated teams, but given this year’s landscape, you have to let Florida State have a chance to compete. But, I digress. Tate Rodemaker will step in and play fine, but this comes down to whether or not Trey Benson can carry the load and whether or not the defense can put the clamps down on Florida. The Gators are also playing with a backup quarterback in Max Brown who I like to play at least as well as Graham Mertz was. It’ll be a tight game, and I think Florida State can still pull it out, but it’s a lot of points in a tough spot for a quarterback in his first start.
Pick: Florida +6.5
While this is a rivalry game for the Yellow Jackets, the same can’t be said for Georgia. The Bulldogs have their sights set on the SEC Championship game and the College Football Playoff after that, so they’ll look to get through this one unscathed. Georgia Tech has been explosive at times, but their reliance on the big play won’t help them against a stout Georgia defense. The Bulldogs won’t run it up and I see this somewhere in the 28-10 or 35-10 range. Georgia may cover, but the game will go under regardless.
Pick: Under 59.5
Clemson Tigers @ South Carolina Gamecocks
Clemson -7.5; Over/Under 48.5
All of a sudden, Clemson is playing like the team we thought they would all year. They’re running the football and the defense has gotten nasty. However, South Carolina isn’t playing poorly having won three games in a row. In front of raucous home crowd, I don’t expect South Carolina to pull off the upset, but as long as they limit the turnovers, they’ll keep it close.
Pick: South Carolina +7.5
What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object? Well in football it usually comes down to the other side of the ball, in this case whether or not the pedestrian Wolfpack offense can take advantage of a sieve-like Tar Heel defense. Drake Maye and the North Carolina attack will be the best offense NC State has seen since it lost 45-24 to Notre Dame, and while I don’t think the Tar Heels score 45, I think they can get to 30. If they do, they’ll cover against an NC State team that has only topped 27 once in ACC play all year.
Pick: North Carolina -2.5