STEVEN CANNON/Associated Press
Clemson is 3-0 straight up over the last three seasons against rival Florida State, winning those games by an average score of 30-20. But the Seminoles are 2-1 against the spread over that span, keeping a couple of games close as underdogs. Can Clemson cover as a double-digit favorite in Tallahassee on Saturday afternoon? Or is Florida State the play as a home dog?
College football point spread: The Tigers opened as 17-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark. (Line updates and matchup report)
College football betting pick, via OddsShark computer: 38.2-24.0 Tigers (College football picks on every game)
Why the Clemson Tigers can cover the spread
Clemson reached 7-0 on the season and 4-0 in ACC play with a 41-7 rout of previously unbeaten North Carolina State last week. The Tigers drove the opening possession of the game 57 yards to a touchdown, drove their third possession 75 yards to another touchdown, led 24-0 at the half and 31-0 before allowing the Wolfpack to hit the scoreboard, on their way to the much-easier-than-anticipated victory and cover as 18-point favorites.
On the afternoon, Clemson out-gained North Carolina State 471-297, held a 24-16 advantage in first downs and won the turnover battle 3-1, creating a plus-10 point differential.
The Tigers are now 3-0 SU and 2-1 ATS since inserting freshman Trevor Lawrence as the starter at quarterback, averaging 44 points per game.
Why the Florida State Seminoles can cover the spread
Florida State is coming off perhaps its best performance of this season, a 38-17 win over Wake Forest last week. The Seminoles spotted the Demon Deacons the first 10 points of the game, then reeled off the next 38, on their way to the victory and the cover as 11-point favorites.
On the day, FSU piled up 471 yards worth of offense, as quarterback Deondre Francois connected on 28 of 40 throws for 341 yards and two touchdowns, without a pick. Meanwhile, the Seminoles defense held Wake Forest to just 94 rushing yards on 51 rushing attempts.
After a slow start to this season, Florida State is 3-1 both SU and ATS its last four times out.
Smart betting pick
Clemson owns the better running game and the better defense and should win this game. And playing on the road means the spread is a little friendlier than if this one were being played at Death Valley. The smart money here takes the Tigers, minus the points.
College football betting trends
The total has gone over in five of Clemson’s last seven games vs Florida State.
Florida State is 2-9 ATS in its last 11 games vs its conference.
Clemson is 5-1 ATS in its last six games vs its conference.
All college football odds and betting trends according to Bleacher Report’s official odds partner, OddsShark. Check out OddsShark on Twitter and Instagram or head to YouTube for more betting picks and analysis on this week’s top games. You can also download the free odds tracker app.