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Clemson Has Top Odds To Win ACC College Football Championship

Kendall Joseph celebrates with teammates Austin Bryant and Christian Wilkins of the Clemson Tigers

Clemson has proven to be the dominant force in the Atlantic Coast Conference, winning the conference crown in each of the past three seasons. Fans and oddsmakers alike are expecting much of the same for the 2018 season with the Tigers being listed as the top dogs to win the crown.

ACC Betting Favorite: Clemson Tigers

Clemson is the -225 favorite to win the ACC for the fourth consecutive season.

The biggest reason why? A terrifying defensive line that could feature four first-round picks. Christian Wilkins, Clelin Ferrell, Austin Bryant and Dexter Lawrence create the nucleus of a defensive front that finished first in the nation in sacks last season. And though there are some injury concerns on the back end of the defense, this absurdly good defensive line should make everyone behind them infinitely better.

The questions arise when you start looking at Clemson’s offense. Kelly Bryant was good at quarterback last season but he is still replaceable. Bryant’s added ability to break down defenses with his running is nice but having a more traditional downfield passer might be necessary for Clemson to get over the hump to win another national championship. Specifically, keep an eye on Trevor Lawrence, as the quarterback was the No.1 recruit in the nation and fits the mold of a more prototypical pocket passer.

All things considered, the questions are rather minor for Clemson. They have one of the best coaches in football, probably the best defensive line and an offense that has proven to produce no matter who is plugged in there. The Tigers deserve to be the betting favorites.

Does Florida State Have A Chance To Win The ACC?

There is no other way to put it – 2017 was a complete disaster for the Florida State Seminoles (+900). Florida State entered the season with national championship aspirations but an injury to quarterback Deondre Francois in the first game of the season derailed those hopes.

Enter Willie Taggart. The new FSU head coach has a track record for kick-starting offenses thanks to a lethal running game and he has all the pieces to create one of the best rushing attacks in the country. Senior Jacques Patrick is a proven producer and sophomore Cam Akers came onto the scene last season as one of the best recruits in the nation.

We still don’t know for sure who is going to be the starting QB, though. Francois will have the inside track for the gig but just how well he bounces back from a massive knee injury remains to be seen. James Blackman proved to be a competent starter in place of Francois but leaves something to be desired.

Aside from some questions at QB, the defense will need to replace all three starting linebackers, as well as Derwin James and Tarvarus McFadden in the secondary. That is a ton of holes to fill and though I think FSU has the talent, I am skeptical that the Seminoles can put all the pieces together in Year 1 under Taggart.

Team To Avoid: Virginia Tech Hokies

Justin Fuente is a spectacular coach and quarterback Josh Jackson is one of the best in the ACC but aside from that, this team is nothing but question marks.

Jackson will no longer have safety net – and all-time VT leader in receiving yards – Cam Phillips to rely on. Phillips accounted for over a third of the Hokies’ receiving yards and seven of their 20 receiving touchdowns last season. The young duo of Sean Savoy and Eric Kumah will need to step up in a big way to make this offense hum.

And though the offense has question marks, the defense simply has blanks. Virginia Tech had one of the best defenses in the country last season but six starters are now gone – including stud linebacker Tremaine Edmunds. These departures hit the secondary the most with three of four starters off to greener pastures.

Yes, Virginia Tech actually gets a pretty easy schedule thanks to playing in the Coastal Division but still opens the season at Florida State and has a late-season date with Miami. There are some great pieces in Blacksburg – but not enough to complete the puzzle.

2018 ACC College Football Conference Betting Odds
TeamOdds
Clemson Tigers-225
Miami Hurricanes+700
Florida State Seminoles+900
Louisville Cardinals+1600
Virginia Tech Hokies+1600
NC State Wolfpack+2000
Boston College Eagles+2500
Wake Forest Demon Deacons+3300
Syracuse Orange+5000
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets+5000
Pitt Panthers+5000
Virginia Cavaliers+5000
Duke Blue Devils+5000
North Carolina Tar Heels+10000

Odds as of May 31 at BetOnline

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