CFB Football Previews – North Carolina Tar Heels vs Clemson Tigers
The ACC has emerged as an exciting conference this season. Even though the big names like Florida State and Miami have disappointed, the likes of Clemson and Georgia Tech have emerged as national contenders. North Carolina hasn’t been half-bad either.
NCAAF Week 8: North Carolina vs Clemson
Date: Saturday, October 22, 2011
Venue: Memorial Stadium, Clemson, South Carolina
North Carolina Tar Heels at Clemson Tigers Betting Lines from BetUS.com
Money Line: OFF
Spread: Clemson -10.5
At Death Valley this Saturday, the Tar Heels will try to do what Maryland almost did last week: spoil the Tigers’ perfect season.
North Carolina Tar Heels (5-2)
North Carolina sits at 5-2 but, given how they played in the second half against Miami last week, it almost deserves to be 6-1. The Tar Heels fell behind 27-3 to a Hurricanes team that was long overdue to explode but UNC outscored Miami 21-3 from that point on, losing 30-24. The Tar Heels actually outgained Miami 429 to 311. It bottled up the seemingly unstoppable Lamar Miller, holding him to 29 rushing yards on 16 carries.
Ultimately, the strong effort was too little, too late, as Jacory Harris’ three touchdown passes did too much damage. But UNC’s two losses this season are by a combined 13 points. This team is not an easy out.
(8) Clemson Tigers (7-0)
No. 8 Clemson got quite a scare against the pesky Maryland Terrapins last week. In one of the year’s most epic games, the Tigers rallied from a 35-17 third-quarter deficit.
Tajh Boyd wound up with four touchdown passes and Andre Ellington ran for 212 yards and two scores as the Tigers rallied to win 56-45 on the strength of 39 second-half points.
There’s nothing wrong with the Tigers’ offense, which churned up 576 total yards and is 14th in the country overall. But, defensively, Clemson had no answer for Maryland dual-threat quarterback C.J. Brown.
Straight-up, I believe Clemson will be a bit too much for UNC. No one has slowed down the Tigers’ offense enough to beat them and UNC’s offense won’t give Clemson the same strange looks that Brown and the Terps did.
But 10.5 points seems like too much to me. North Carolina is still arguably a better team than Maryland and it outplayed Miami on many levels last week. Bryn Renner isn’t Brown but he’s still a good enough quarterback to put points on the board against Clemson.
I’d expect a high-scoring affair and a Tigers win but a closer margin than 11 points.
North Carolina vs Clemson prediction: Clemson 38, North Carolina 30
Money Line: OFF
Spread: North Carolina +10.5
Over/Under: OVER 58
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