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With all due respect to Clay Travis, he’s wrong about the No. 4 Clemson Tigers game against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at the Mercedez-Benz Stadium in Atlanta. Clemson is going to make a statement vs. Georgia Tech in college football’s lone, primetime Labor Day game.
It’s a fat number but head over to DraftKings Sportsbook and BET the CLEMSON TIGERS -23.5 (-110) for the following reasons:
- The talent gap between Clemson-Georgia Tech is insurmountable for the Yellow Jackets.
- Clemson QB D.J. Uiagalelei will have a bounce-back year.
- Tigers coach Dabo Swinney will be fine after both coordinators took other gigs this offseason.
David (Georgia Tech) Vs. Goliath (Clemson)
Generally speaking, Clemson is flying under the radar heading into 2022 because of one underwhelming season. The Pittsburgh Panthers ended Clemson’s six-year ACC Conference winning streak. But, Clemson still won its bowl game vs. the Iowa State Cyclones and finished 10-3.
More importantly, Clemson has one of the most talented programs in the country. The Tigers belong in the conversation with Alabama, Georgia and Ohio State. Eighteen of Clemson’s 22 starters are four- or five-star recruits.
Furthermore, Georgia Tech is 109th in returning production according to ESPN’s Bill Connelly. The Yellow Jackets are projected to finish 93rd this season in schedule-based net efficiency per Football Outsiders. In fact, Georgia Tech’s best player from last year’s squad — RB Jahmyr Gibbs — transferred to Alabama this offseason.
On top of that, the Tigers have owned Georgia Tech since winning its first national championship in 2016. Over that span, the Yellow Jackets are scoring 11.2 points per game (PPG) in six straight games vs. Clemson. Georgia Tech is averaging just 9.7 PPG since coach Geoff Collins took over in 2019.
The Yellow Jackets kept it close last season with the Tigers: Clemson won 14-8 but failed to cover as 27.5-point favorites. By making Clemson 23.5-point favorites entering this tilt, the oddsmakers are clearly not overreacting to last season’s result.
However, there are a couple of other handicapping angles for taking CLEMSON -23.5 (-110) as well…
D.J. & Dabo
As previously mentioned, the Tigers’ offense is loaded and I expect Uiagalelei to play up to his five-star projection. Uiagalelei filled in nicely for former Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence when he missed time due to COVID protocols in 2020.
But, Uiagalelei was awful last season. We don’t have to get into the numbers, they were bad. Yet Uiagalelei has a ton of weapons around him and five-star freshman QB Cade Klubnik breathing down his neck. Uiagalelei could have a Cam Newton-like season en route to another College Football Playoff appearance for the Tigers.
Swinney is motivated to prove he can keep Clemson’s program elite after having to replace both coordinators. Former defensive coordinator Brett Venables and offensive coordinator Tony Elliot both left Clemson for head coaching jobs.
However, this is routine for top-tier college football programs. Alabama’s Nick Saban is cycling through coordinators non-stop whilst competing for national championships. Swinney keeping his staff intact for as long as did is impressive.
All in all, Uiagalelei and Swinney both enter 2022 with chips on their shoulders. The Tigers will make a statement on Labor Day by mauling the Yellow Jackets.
BET the CLEMSON TIGERS -23.5 (-110) at DraftKings Sportsbook.
- A $110 bet on Clemson -23.5 (-110) returns a $100 profit of the Tigers beat Georgia Tech by 24 or more points.
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