Pittsburgh vs. Clemson Odds & Predictions

by | Nov 23, 2020 | cfb

Pittsburgh Panthers (5-4 SU, 3-5-1 ATS) vs. No. 4 Clemson Tigers (7-1 SU, 2-6 ATS)

Date/Time: Saturday, November 28th, 2020. 3:30PM (EST)

Where: Memorial Stadium Clemson, S.C.

TV: ESPN

Point Spread: PITT +26/CLEM -26 (Get the best bonus offer - Free loot is good loot!)

Over/Under Total: 55

The 4th ranked Clemson Tigers were scheduled to return to action last week against the Florida State Seminoles. The Tigers were two weeks removed from their double-overtime loss to Notre Dame, which ended the nation’s longest regular-season winning streak. Following a bye, the Tigers were gearing up to battle the Seminoles in Tallahassee until a game day positive COVID-19 test altered those plans. Medical personnel between both the Seminoles and Tigers could not come to an agreement, which led to the game being postponed just hours before kick-off. Clemson’s long-awaited return to the gridiron will now take place this Saturday when the Tigers host the Pittsburgh Panthers at Memorial Stadium.

The 5-4 SU Panthers have been a pretty solid football team this season. Despite two one-point losses to North Carolina State and Boston College, the Panthers’ only other losses have come expectedly at the hands of Miami and Notre Dame. Still, Pittsburgh has rattled off a few impressive wins, including recent back-to-back convincing victories over Florida State and Virginia Tech. In last week’s monstrous triumph over Virginia Tech, the Panthers entered the game as 6 point underdogs but relied heavily on the arm of senior quarterback Kenny Pickett who threw for 404 yards through the air to lead the Panthers to a 47-14 victory over the Hokies. On Saturday, the Panthers will be even bigger 26 point underdogs when they go into Clemson, which begs the question if we are underestimating Pittsburgh’s potential?

Pittsburgh and Clemson’s underwhelming betting numbers

At first glance, I thought this betting line was over-exaggerated in Clemson’s favor. The Tigers have not played a competitive snap in over three weeks, and the Panthers are coming off two convincing victories during that downtime. However, Pittsburgh has largely underperformed in the eyes of bettors this season, going 2-4-1 ATS in the last seven games. The Panthers have been listed as double-digit underdogs twice this season and have lost both games (ATS), including an ugly 45-3 loss to Notre Dame; the same Notre Dame team Clemson took into double overtime without starting QB Trevor Lawrence. While Pittsburgh’s offense looked great in last week’s win against Virginia Tech, they have not been consistent. Without much of a running threat, I could easily see Clemson’s defense having a strong performance in this game because they bring pressure and disguise coverages really well.

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While it seems that the argument may be shifting into Clemson’s favor, I’m not ready to give the Tigers the comfortable edge either. As I mentioned before, the Tigers have been out of action for an extended period of time. Even before the layoff, the Tigers were among the worst betting teams in the country with a measly 2-6 record ATS. I have stated on several occasions this season while covering Clemson that this is not the same offense we have seen in previous years. While the Tigers are still loaded with talent, we have not seen the numerous big plays and huge scoring numbers that lofted Clemson into the limelight in recent years. QB Trevor Lawrence and RB Travis Etienne are among the best players in college football at their positions, but Clemson as a team is more methodical than explosive in 2020. To drive home my point, the Tigers have been listed as 26 point or larger favorites in 6 games this year and are just 1-5 ATS in those six games.

Bet the over in Pittsburgh vs. Clemson

When I look at the point’s spread, I don’t feel confident in either team in this game. Based solely on the match-up, I can see numerous paths to a cover for both sides, largely because of Pittsburgh’s inconsistency. However, I expect the over 55 to yield the best betting value on the board. Clemson’s offense has posted 40 points or more in five of the last six games. Meanwhile, Pittsburgh is fresh on the heels of their two biggest offensive performances of the season. Additionally, I should also mention game pace, which should help drive the scoring in this game. Most people are probably somewhat familiar with Clemson’s high pace offense. The Tigers rank 6th in the FBS in averaging 82 snaps per game on the offensive side of the ball, while Pittsburgh also pushes the pace at 76 snaps per game. The Tigers have not had a game go under the 55 points combined mark since their 49-0 shutout over Citadel (FCAS) in Week 2, and I believe we can rely on that streak continuing. Trust the offenses, the pace, and the scoring potential to drive home a winning ticket on the over 55.

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