ACC football picks: #3 Clemson vs. Louisville & 4 more

Profile Picture: Dan Halverson

October 18th, 2019

-24.5 (-110)
O 62 (-110)
+24.5 (-110)
U 62 (-110)
This line opened at 22.5 and quickly moved to 24.5. Clemson is 6-0 on the year and 4-2 against the spread, while Louisville is 4-2 straight up and 4-2 ATS.

Clemson used its Week 6 bye to get things right and came back in Week 7 to crush Florida State. Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence made some fantastic passes, and the defense showed up to hold FSU scoreless in the first half. After what has been a disappointing statistical start to the year, Lawrence had arguably his best game of the 2019.

On the other side of the field, Louisville is playing musical chairs with their quarterbacks. Week 1 starter Jawon Pass is out for the season. Micale Cunningham took over for Pass but is now in a battle with Evan Conley. Cunningham is an explosive runner, but one has to wonder how prepared he is to play against an elite team coming off a head injury against Wake Forest. If Louisville turns to Conley, the 3-star high school recruit will face the defending national champions and Brent Venables. Neither option sounds appealing.

Compounding the potential issues at quarterback, and despite the offensive explosion last week against Wake Forest, Louisville’s offensive line is the third worst in the country at allowing tackles for loss. This is still a team that was last in the conference last year and had a season win total set at 3.5 prior to the season. The ceiling isn’t high for Louisville, and as Clemson ramps up for another championship run, this is the kind of game that will give them the opportunity to gets lots of offensive weapons involved.

Louisville is outclassed in this matchup, so don’t be surprised if this spread continues to climb toward kickoff.

Pick: Clemson -24.5

Pittsburgh (-4) at Syracuse, Friday, 7 p.m. ET, ESPN

It still seems surreal this is an ACC matchup. Syracuse struggled mightily for three quarters against NC State last time out, but the Orange nearly came back to win and the extra time to prepare for this game should serve them well.

Pick: Syracuse +4

Florida State at Wake Forest (-1.5), Saturday, 7:30 p.m. ET, ACC Network

FSU was thoroughly conquered in its matchup against Clemson last week, but the Seminoles still have a lot to play for, and Wake showed last week that it is lost on defense. While FSU still has a lot of troubles on the offensive line, star defensive tackle Marvin Wilson’s quotes this week indicate this team isn’t ready to quit.

Pick: Florida State +1.5

Duke at Virginia (-3), Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, ACC Network

Virginia suffered a major loss when starting defensive back and potential first-round pick Bryce Hall went down last Friday night. While his loss will certainly have an impact, I expect the team to rally and play tougher in his absence. Virginia needs this game to maintain its hopes of winning the division and is the better all-around team.

Pick: Virginia -3

North Carolina (-3.5) at Virginia Tech, Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET

Virginia Tech has been a good to bet against this year, at 1-5 against the spread. I haven’t seen anything to make me think this will change against an overachieving UNC team this week.

Pick: North Carolina -3.5

North Carolina State (-3) at Boston College, Saturday, noon ET

I don't really want to support either of these teams, but I’d rather bet against Boston College than against NC State.

Pick: NC State -3

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