College Football Betting: Appalachian State at Clemson

College Football Betting:  Appalachian State at Clemson

Both teams got the 2015 college football season off to a winning start with blowout victories over overmatched teams. Clemson thumped in-state ‘rival’ Wofford 49-10 while Appalachian State demolished Howard University 49-0. Now Appalachian State has a formidable challenge in taking on ACC foe Clemson. The Tigers are coming off an impressive 10 win season in which they showed unexpected tenacity on defense which allowed them to win games despite the frequent absence of rookie quarterback QB Deshaun Watson for a good chunk of the schedule. Appalachian State finished 7-5 last year but ‘flipped a switch’ after Taylor Lamb took over at quarterback for the Mountaineers. The team ran off six straight wins to end the season.

While Appalachian State might be ‘down’ from some of the 1-AA/FCS championship level teams of past years that actually works in favor of our handicap. This is a team on the rise with a highly underrated running back in Marcus Cox (35 rushing TDs L2 seasons). This is one of those games that is a big deal for the ‘lesser’ opponent but actually a distraction for the ‘superior’ team. Clemson is heading into a nasty scheduling sequence starting with their ACC opener on Thursday at Louisville. They’ll get a bye week after that before a couple more tough games against Notre Dame and Georgia Tech but–once again–the bye looks to be in our favor. This game is even more of a distraction with a ‘big’ nationally televised conference game five days away followed by a week off.

We expect Clemson’s defense to continue to show improvement under solid coordinator Brent Venables. But there is some bad news for Tiger fans–they lost 8 starters from their 2014 defense including 4 NFL draft picks with two going in the first round. That’s a lot of talent to replace and with Wofford not able to compete in terms of talent its hard to say how well Clemson has done in replacing them. We’ll take the points with a decent Appalachian State team. We don’t expect the outright upset but don’t see any reason that they can’t stay inside this number against a distracted Clemson team with much bigger games on deck.