The Clemson Tigers are already two-time defending ACC champions, and they'll shoot for the three-peat when they go against the Miami Hurricanes in the ACC championship game Saturday night in Charlotte. And not only is this game for conference bragging rights, but it could well determine a berth in the upcoming College Football Playoff.
College football point spread: The Tigers opened as eight-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark. (Line updates and matchup report)
College football betting pick, via OddsShark computer: 35.6-28.0 Tigers (College football picks on every game)
Why the Miami Hurricanes can cover the spread
The Hurricanes won their first 10 games this season but are trying to bounce back this week after suffering a 24-14 loss at Pittsburgh last Friday. Miami led that game well into the second quarter 7-3 but gave up a Panthers touchdown just before halftime and never recovered.
The Hurricanes defense tried to keep them in the game in the second half against Pitt but eventually wore down. Meanwhile, the offense was forced to punt six of its eight second-half possessions.
Nonetheless, Miami is making its first appearance in the ACC championship game, and a victory could net the Hurricanes an invitation to the CFP.
Prior to last week, the Hurricanes were working the ground game well, outrushing their previous three opponents, which included Virginia Tech and Notre Dame, by a per-game average of 201-89.
Finally, the last time Miami was an underdog, it bit the Irish 41-8 three weeks ago.
Why the Clemson Tigers can cover the spread
The Tigers ended their regular season with five straight wins, including a 34-10 decision over rival South Carolina last week. Clemson took an early lead on a defensive pick-six, led 20-0 at halftime and later pushed that to 34-0, on its way toward an easy cover as a two-touchdown favorite.
On the night, the Tigers outgained the Gamecocks 469-207, outrushed them 184-81, made 27 first downs compared to 10 for South Carolina and won time of possession by a 35-25 split.
Clemson has now outrushed every opponent this season except one. The Tigers are also 3-0 ATS their last three times out, covering three double-digit spreads.
Clemson owns advantages in the running game, on defense and in the experience department. Miami, meanwhile, proved itself a paper tiger last week, which should not have come as a big surprise, considering the close calls of earlier this season. Smart money here takes the Tigers.
College football betting trends
Miami is 1-4 ATS in its last five games against Clemson.
The total has gone over in Miami's last four games against Clemson.
The total has gone over in seven of Clemson's last 10 games in Week 14.
All college football odds and betting trends courtesy of Bleacher Report’s official odds partner, OddsShark. All quotes gathered firsthand unless otherwise noted. Check out Twitter for injury and line-movement updates and the OddsShark YouTube page for picks and analysis, or download the free odds tracker app.