Clemson vs Wake Forest Betting Odds, Picks: Can Demon Deacons Keep It Close? (September 24)

Clemson vs Wake Forest Betting Odds, Picks: Can Demon Deacons Keep It Close? (September 24) article feature image

Photo by Carly Mackler/Getty Images. Pictured: Quinton Cooley (Wake Forest)

Clemson vs Wake Forest Odds

Saturday, Sept 24
12 p.m. ET
Clemson Odds
-115o / -105u
Wake Forest Odds
-115o / -105u
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

Both of these teams may be undefeated, but it sure hasn't been pretty.

Wake Forest started the year with an offseason injury scare involving stud quarterback Sam Hartman, but it now sits at 3-0 after a one-point victory over Liberty. While Hartman has been productive, he will need to shake off the rest of his rust before going against the Tigers' elite defense.

Clemson, on the other hand, looked like it was heading for a repeat of its 2021 disappointing season until it pulled away from Georgia Tech. The offense has still looked flat, relying on the success of the defense to pull away from lesser competition.

Will Hartman lead his team to an upset en-route to repeating a trip to the ACC Championship? Or will Clemson remind everyone that it's still in a class of its own?

Let's find out.

Clemson Tigers

It feels like forever ago when quarterback DJ Uiagalelei put his stamp on the map in a 439-yard, two-touchdown losing effort against Notre Dame. Being deemed as the future of Clemson under center, he has only led the Tigers to disappointment, per Clemson's standards.

While Clemson's offense was abysmal last season, it has been finding a rhythm ever since exploding in the second half against Georgia Tech. Is this a sign of progression?

The Tigers have leaned on running back Will Shipley, as he has put the offense on his back. Clemson currently has rushing metrics in the top 20 for both Rush Success and Line Yards, and it will continue to pound the rock until the passing attack follows suit.

Clemson RB Will Shipley leads the ACC in…

Rushing touchdowns (6)
Yards per attempt (7.78)


— Saturday Road (@SaturdayRoad) September 21, 2022

While the offense is figuring out its identity, the defense is once again one of the best in the nation.

The unit will need to continue to be sharp, as Wake Forest owns one of the most potent passing attacks in football.

The Deacs will consistently test the Clemson secondary, which is an area that the Tigers are weakest at. I would hardly call it a weakness, though, as they are still above average in Pass Success.

Wake Forest Demon Deacons

A win is a win, but man was it ugly. Coming in as a 17-point favorite, Wake Forest narrowly survived Liberty by one-point.

The offense has not skipped a beat, but still owns flaws.

The Deacs are once again abandoning the run and going pass heavy. That makes sense when you have Hartman, but he still has some rust to shake off. He finished his last game out throwing for 325 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions.

While the offense is a top-10 passing unit, it will have to cut down on the Havoc and limit as many Clemson opportunities as it can. Wake Forest currently ranks 66th in Havoc.

Speaking of Havoc, the defense has been incredible in disrupting the game flow of opposing offenses.

This will be a key metric for the Demon Deacons, as they want to give themselves as many chances as possible against this elite defense.

So many 𝐌𝐀𝐒𝐒𝐈𝐕𝐄 plays from the defense last night 😤#MINDSET 🔒

— Wake Forest Football (@WakeFB) September 18, 2022

Should Wake Forest take advantage of Uiagalelei's struggles in the pocket with its Havoc-minded pass rush, it can set itself up nicely for an upset and be firmly in control of the ACC.

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Clemson vs Wake Forest Matchup Analysis

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

Clemson Offense vs. Wake Forest Defense
Rush Success20113
Line Yards1749
Pass Success4253
Pass Blocking**671
Finishing Drives967
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Wake Forest Offense vs. Clemson Defense
Rush Success1297
Line Yards11315
Pass Success1032
Pass Blocking**938
Finishing Drives3528
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Pace of Play / Other
PFF Tackling4994
PFF Coverage913
SP+ Special Teams6229
Seconds per Play24.9 (37)24.6 (33)
Rush Rate50.7% (86)50.7% (86)
Data via (CFBD), FootballOutsiders, SP+, Pro Football Focus and SportSource Analytics.

Clemson vs Wake Forest Pick

Until Clemson proves to me that it's back to its championship winning ways, this is a team I will continue to fade — especially with Hartman back under center and only getting better with each game played for Wake.

While the Clemson offense has improved, it still relies on the success of the run to generate any long drives.

That's a style of play I see struggling against Wake Forest's defensive line.

Take Wake Forest at +7 or better in what will be a thrilling title fight to better position itself for the ACC Championship.

Pick: Wake Forest +7.5

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