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Syracuse Has Covered Spread in 4 of Last 6 Games vs Clemson

Syracuse quarterback Rex Culpepper (17) plays against Pittsburgh in an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020, in Pittsburgh.

After setting an ACC record with a 66-point victory last week over Georgia Tech, Clemson (5-0 SU, 2-3 ATS) looks to extend its 37-game regular-season winning streak as a massive favorite over Syracuse (1-4, 2-3). The Orange, coincidentally, were the last team to beat the Tigers in regular-season play and are 4-2 ATS in the last six meetings.

Syracuse Orange vs Clemson Tigers
  • Date/Time: October 24, 12 noon ET
  • Stadium: Memorial Stadium
  • TV Coverage: ACC Network
  • Opening Odds: Clemson -44.5 | O/U 59.5 (Line History)
  • Syracuse vs Clemson Matchup Report

Opening Odds Analysis

This game was lined at Clemson -37.5 during the summer, but the Tigers’ dominance and Syracuse’s struggles have caused oddsmakers to tack on an extra touchdown. According to our database, Clemson hasn’t been favored this heavily over an FBS opponent since 2006 vs Temple.

Syracuse News & Notes

Last week marked Rex Culpepper’s first start in three years, but the backup quarterback’s performance was the least of Syracuse’s issues in an embarrassing 38-21 loss at home to Liberty. The Orange defense was gashed on the ground for the second consecutive week, allowing 368 rushing yards after yielding 366 the previous week at Duke.

Culpepper, pressed into the starting role after Syracuse lost Tommy DeVito to a potential season-ending injury against Duke, threw for three touchdowns – although he misfired on 21 of his 40 passing attempts and had just 211 yards through the air.

Syracuse has now gone OVER the total in each of its last three games and is 7-2 to the OVER in its last nine dating back to last year. The Orange have also gone OVER in six of their last eight conference contests.

Clemson News & Notes

Clemson has covered 16 of its last 20 games against ACC opponents, but it took its dominance of the conference to a new level last week. The Tigers’ 73-7 rout of Georgia Tech set an ACC record for margin of victory as Clemson scored the final 66 points of the contest after the teams traded early touchdowns.

QB Trevor Lawrence shook off a first-quarter interception – his first in nearly a calendar year – to throw for 404 yards and five touchdown passes in the first half alone, taking a seat after the Tigers’ first possession of the second half.

With the potential for Lawrence to leave the game early once again this week if Clemson opens up a big lead, you may want to monitor the Tigers’ quarterback depth chart. D.J. Uiagalelei, normally Lawrence’s backup, missed last week’s game due to an undisclosed injury suffered in Clemson’s previous game against Miami.

Redshirt freshman Taisun Phommachanh was the first off the bench in place of Lawrence and completed just two of six passes before breaking a bone in his hand, but walk-on freshman Hunter Helms was 5-for-7 for 74 yards and two touchdowns.

Betting Pick: Syracuse +44.5

Clemson has failed to cover its last three games as a favorite of 44 points or more, and I can see the Tigers losing interest after building a big lead in this one. Prior to last week’s explosion, Clemson had scored 42 points or less in three of its first four games.

Shark Bites
  • Clemson has won 37 straight regular-season games.
  • The OVER is 7-2 in Syracuse’s last 9 games (avg. combined score: 60.6).
  • Syracuse is 4-2 ATS in its last 6 games vs Clemson.