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College Football Odds, Predictions, Picks for Clemson vs. Louisville: Betting Value Lies With Cardinals

College Football Odds, Predictions, Picks for Clemson vs. Louisville: Betting Value Lies With Cardinals article feature image

Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images. Pictured from left: Clemson Tigers running back Will Shipley (1) and quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei (5).

  • Clemson sits at -3.5 for its matchup against Louisville tonight, according to updated odds.
  • The Tigers have continued to underwhelm this season but are coming off a win over Florida State.
  • Check out Doug Ziefel's best bet for the game below.

Clemson vs. Louisville Odds

Clemson Odds -3.5
Louisville Odds +3.5
Moneyline -180 / +155
Over/Under 46.5 (-105 / -115)
Time Saturday, 7:30 p.m. ET
TV ACC Network
Odds as of Saturday and via DraftKings

The ACC takes center stage in Louisville as Clemson travels to take on the Cardinals. The Tigers have dominated every meeting between these two programs, taking all six.

Clemson comes into this game off of a win that holds more importance for those of you reading this since it was its first victory against the spread of the season.

It came at the expense of any Florida State backers, producing an all-time bad beat. You can feel the agony.

An all-time bad beat right here.

Clemson up 4, FSU has the ball for the last play of the game.

Clemson scores to win by 10; the spread was Clemson +9.5

— SEC Mike (@MichaelWBratton) October 30, 2021

On the other side, the Cardinals are stumbling into this matchup as they have lost three of their last four contests.

After their most recent loss to NC State, head coach Scott Satterfield said, “I thought we moved the ball. We just didn’t score.”

The consistency the Louisville offense has shown is the reason there’s value on this game. Are we really willing to buy Clemson after its first cover?

Clemson Tigers

Defense Wins… Sometimes

It is no secret that the downfall of Clemson this season has been due to its offense. The numbers are not pretty for this unit, as it ranks 118th in points per game, 120th in yards per game and 113th in yards per play.

The struggles of quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei have been well-documented, hitting rock bottom when he was pulled against Pitt. The sophomore remained the starter last week and did not respond with a performance that was different from any other this year.

While Uiagalelei did not step up last week, Will Shipley did.

The freshman running back had the biggest game of his career by running for 128 yards and two touchdowns, the last of which gave the Tigers the lead late in the fourth quarter. Shipley has been one of the lone bright spots of the offense and could be leaned on in this one since the Cardinals rank 62nd in yards per rush allowed.

The Tigers defense has remained one of the best in the nation and is why this Clemson team is competitive. The Tigers rank fifth in points per game allowed and ninth in yards per play allowed.

Clemson will once again hold multiple edges in advanced metrics, but the Cardinals have an X-factor that could give the Tigers nightmares.

Louisville Cardinals

Malik Cunningham vs. Everybody

Cardinals quarterback Malik Cunningham has been putting together a highlight reel that may challenge Titanic in length. The junior leads the team in both passing and rushing yards, and it’s specifically his running ability that makes the Louisville offense explosive.

Check out his run from 2018 to see why many think he could be the next Lamar Jackson:

Malik Cunningham goes full Madden mode for the score! ūüŹÉ‚Äć‚ôāÔłŹūüí®

2‚É£7‚É£ days until @ACCFootball is here! #GoCards | @UofLFootball, @MalikMalikc10

— ACC Digital Network (@theACCDN) July 28, 2019

Cunningham may be thought of as a one-man show, but the work of freshman running back Jalen Mitchell cannot be understated. He has run for 493 yards at nearly five yards per attempt this season.

The combo of Cunningham and Mitchell makes Louisville one of the more explosive offenses in the country. While the Clemson defense has been fierce, it will be difficult to prepare for Cunningham and his playmaking ability. Dabo Swinney and the Tigers will have their hands full trying to contain him.

The Louisville defense is certainly not as daunting as the Clemson unit, but the Cardinals could provide resistance in the only area where the Tigers have been succeeding. These two teams are dead even in Rushing Success, and the Cardinals only allow 142 rushing yards per game, which is good for 46 amongst all FBS teams.

Clemson vs. Louisville Matchup Analysis

Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Clemson and Louisville match up statistically:

Clemson Offense vs. Louisville Defense
Rush Success 79 79
Line Yards 47 100
Pass Success 125 36
Pass Blocking** 57 123
Big Play 92 107
Havoc 78 30
Finishing Drives 76 114
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Louisville Offense vs. Clemson Defense
Rush Success 35 7
Line Yards 35 15
Pass Success 48 26
Pass Blocking** 31 85
Big Play 45 18
Havoc 22 46
Finishing Drives 52 2
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Pace of Play / Other
PFF Tackling 33 59
Coverage 17 40
Middle 8 116 45
SP+ Special Teams 41 57
Plays per Minute 46 86
Rush Rate 51.8% (88) 56.7% (51)

Clemson vs. Louisville Betting Pick

This spread is a classic buy-low, sell-high situation. Clemson is on its high horse after finally covering a game against a bad Florida State team, and Louisville can’t seem to get enough stops to allow its offense to outscore their opponent.

The difference in this matchup is that Clemson is one of the weaker offenses that the Cardinals will face all season. So, give me Louisville as a home dog.

Pick: Louisville +3.5 

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