ACC College Football Betting Preview: Boston College Eagles at #3 Clemson Tigers
Boston College Eagles at #3 Clemson Tigers
Memorial Stadium – Clemson, South Carolina
Saturday, October 12, 2013, 3:30 pm Eastern, TV: ABC or ESPN2
Opening Line: Clemson -21
Current Line: Clemson -24
Opening Total: 61
Current Total: 62
Opening Money Line: Clemson -2700 / Boston College +1400
Current Money Line: Clemson -2500 / Boston College +1300
The 3-2 Boston College Eagles travel to the #3 Clemson Tigers who are 5-0. The Eagles are 1-1 in the ACC and Clemson is 3-0. Clemson leads the series 11-9-1 against Boston College including 4-3-1 in Death Valley. The Tigers won last year 45-31 at BC. The series dates back to the 1940 Cotton Bowl and since 2008 they have played for the O’Rourke-McFadden Trophy.
Boston College is coached by Steve Addazio in his first year. The Eagles have home wins over Villanova 24-14, Wake Forest 24-14, and last week against Army 48-27. BC has losses at USC 35-7 and at home against Florida State 48-34. The Eagles are 3-2 ATS and the total is 2-3 this season. Boston College was an 11 point favorite against Army and the total was 50.5.
The Army-Boston college game was in jeopardy of being cancelled or postponed because of the government shutdown. Army had to get permission from the Department of Defense to use private funds to travel to the game. The teams traded the lead several times in the first half. Army took a 17-14 lead early in the second quarter, but BC scored 14 straight and would never trail again. The Eagles took a 31-20 lead into halftime. Army and Boston College exchanged touchdowns in the third quarter, but the Eagles would outscore them 10-0 in the fourth quarter to win 48-27. BC had 523 total yards including 320 rushing yards. The Black Knights had 427 total yards including 326 rushing yards. Neither team had a turnover.
Boston College is outscoring teams 27.4-26.8 this season. The Eagles are averaging 367.2 total yards per game including 188 rushing and 179.2 passing yards. Boston College is #95 in total offense and #109 in passing out of 125 teams. BC is allowing 413.6 yards per game including 209.8 passing and 203.8 rushing yards. Boston College is #36 in pass defense and #105 in rush defense. The Eagles are +5 in turnovers with 9 takeaways. Boston College is 26/69 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 29/68. BC is averaging 27 penalty yards per game and opponents are averaging 42. The Eagles have forced 16 sacks this season and allowed 8. BC is 13/14 scoring in the red zone with 8 touchdowns and opponents are 12/15 with 8 touchdowns. The Eagles have allowed one pick six this season.
BC quarterback Chase Rettig has completed 64.5% of his passes for 891 yards with 9 touchdowns and 3 interceptions, along with 23 carries for only 12 yards. Back-up quarterback Josh Bordner is questionable with a knee injury. Running back Andre Williams has 133 carries, 768 yards and 7 touchdowns. No other back besides Rettig has more than 15 carries. Receiver Alex Amidon has 32 catches, 426 yards and 2 touchdowns. No other receiver has more than 7 catches this season but C.J. Parsons has two touchdown catches. Four defensive players are listed as questionable or out Saturday for BC along with 3 little used wide receivers.
Clemson is coached by Dabo Swinney. The Tigers have home wins over Georgia 38-35, South Carolina State 52-13, and Wake Forest 56-7. Clemson also has road wins at North Carolina State 26-14 and last week at Syracuse 49-14. The Tigers are 3-2 ATS and the total is 3-2 this season. Clemson easily covered the 14 point spread at Syracuse and the game stayed under the 65.5 point total.
Clemson jumped out to a 21 point lead in the first half against Syracuse and never looked back in a 49-14 romp. The Tigers cranked out 624 total yards including 468 passing yards. Syracuse had 397 total yards including 323 rushing yards. Syracuse had 8 penalties for 60 yards and 4 touchdowns. Clemson had 2 turnovers of their own.
Clemson is outscoring teams 44-17 this season. Clemson is 16th or better nationally in both categories. The Tigers are averaging 518.2 yards per game including 175 rushing yards and 343.2 passing yards. Clemson is #11 in passing and #14 in total offense nationally. On defense, Clemson is allowing 356.6 total yards per game including 185.4 passing and 171.2 rushing. The Tigers are +9 in turnovers with 11 takeaways. The Tigers average 38 penalty yards per game and opponents are averaging 49. Clemson is 47/95 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 29/95. Clemson has forced 19 sacks but has allowed 13 this season. The Tigers are 18/19 scoring in the red zone with 16 touchdowns, and opponents are 7/11 with 7 touchdowns. Clemson has 2 pick sixes this season.
Quarterback Tajh Boyd has completed 66% of his passes for 1,449 yards with 14 touchdowns and 2 picks, along with 57 carries for 154 yards and 4 touchdowns. Running back Roderick McDowell has 60 carries for 294 yards, along with 5 catches. McDowell is probable with an ankle injury. D.J. Howard, Zac Brooks and C.J. Davidson will all get a few carries and catches. Davidson has 3 rushing touchdowns. Brooks has 2 rushing touchdowns, and Howard has one. Both Brooks and Howard have receiving touchdowns as well. Receiver Sammy Watkins has 29 catches for 481 yards and 3 touchdowns. Receiver Charone Peak had 8 catches and a touchdown, but he is out for the season with a knee injury. Martavis Bryant, Germone Hopper and Adam Humphries will also get significant catches. Hopper and Humphries both have two touchdown catches while Bryant has 3. Five defensive players and two offensive linemen are listed as questionable or out Saturday.
Boston College is 4-1 ATS after rushing for more than 200 yards, and against teams with winning records, 2-5 after scoring more than 40 points, and after a straight up win, 2-8 after a straight up win of 20 points or more, 0-4 against teams with winning home records, 0-7 in road games, and 0-5 on grass. The last four games in Clemson in the series have gone under the total.
Clemson is 4-0 ATS in October, 7-1 after gaining more than 450 total yards, 7-2 after a cover, 11-4 overall, 19-7 in ACC games, 8-3 after passing for more than 280 yards, 5-2 after a straight up win by 20 points or more, and after allowing 20 points or less. The Tigers are 4-1 ATS in the last 5 against the Eagles.
There is no question Clemson is the better team here, but Clemson could be looking ahead to next week’s showdown with Florida State. I don’t know if Boston College can score enough to keep up with the high powered Tiger offense, but the Eagles will try to control the clock with their running game. BC scores a late touchdown to get the backdoor cover.