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Clemson at Louisville - 9/16/17 College Football Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Clemson Tigers (2-0) at Louisville Cardinals (2-0)

College Football: Saturday, September 16, 2017 at 8:00 pm (Papa John's Cardinal Stadium)

The Line: Louisville Cardinals +3 -- Over/Under: 58 See the Latest Odds

TV: ABC

The Clemson Tigers and Louisville Cardinals meet Saturday in college football action at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium on ABC.

The Clemson Tigers look to improve to 3-0 by beating back-to-back ranked teams. The Clemson Tigers have won 10 straight road games. Kelly Bryant is completing 68.6 percent of his passes for 417 yards, one touchdown and one interception. Bryant and Zerrick Cooper have combined for two touchdown passes this season. Ray-Ray McCloud and Deon Cain have combined for 202 receiving yards and one touchdown while Hunter Renfrow has 11 receptions. The Clemson Tigers ground game is averaging 224.5 yards per contest, and Kelly Bryant leads the way with 136 yards and three touchdowns. Defensively, Clemson is allowing 4.5 points and 118.5 yards per game. Dorian O'Daniel leads the Clemson Tigers with 18 tackles, Austin Bryant has four sacks and Ryan Carter has two pass deflections. 

Clemson at Louisville - 9/16/17 College Football Pick, Odds, and Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

The Louisville Cardinals also look for a quick 3-0 start when they take their home field for the first time this season. The Louisville Cardinals have won nine of their last 10 home games. Lamar Jackson is completing 64.7 percent of his passes for 771 yards, five touchdowns and zero interceptions. Jackson has two or more touchdown passes in six of his last nine games. Jaylen Smith and Dez Fitzpatrick have combined for 473 receiving yards and four touchdowns while Seth Dawkins has seven receptions. The Louisville Cardinals ground game is averaging 229 yards per contest, and Jackson leads the way with 239 yards and three touchdowns. Defensively, Louisville is allowing 31.5 points and 372.5 yards per game. Zykiesis Cannon leads the Louisville Cardinals with 14 tackles, Jon Greenard has two sacks and Stacy Thomas has one interception.

The Tigers are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 conference games, 4-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record and 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games overall. The Cardinals are 6-1-1 ATS in their last 8 games in September, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 home games and 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games overall. The over is 9-3 in Cardinals last 12 conference games and the over is 6-2 in Tigers last 8 games overall.

The difference in this game for many is the fact the Louisville Cardinals haven't shown the ability to get stops and rely heavily on Lamar Jackson, while the Clemson Tigers have possibly the best defense in the country. However, Louisville was Jackson or bust for the most part last season, and the Cards nearly beat Clemson on the road anyway. The bottom line is the Louisville Cardinals have the best college QB in the country and he's capable of willing his team to victory regardless of the odds. If he has even an average game by his standards, I'm not sure Clemson can keep up. Not to mention Papa John's Cardinal Stadium has quietly become a tough place to play the past couple of years.

I'll take my free field goal, but I like the Cardinals to win this game outright. 

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