Clemson @ Georgia Tech
Georgia Tech +24 -110 over Clemson

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Posted at 12:45 PM EST and odds are subject to change.

Georgia Tech +23 over Clemson

Chick-Fil-A Kickoff - Mercedes-Benz Stadium - Atlanta, GA

Streaming: ESPN

8:00 PM EST. Clemson is college football royalty on the level of an Alabama. In fact, it might be the program closest to the Tide when one considers success in the College Football Playoff era. Dabo Swinney has built a program that made the first six final fours, winning two national championships.

Last season, the Tigers missed the playoffs for the first time, but still managed to win 10 games, including a Cheez-It Bowl win over Iowa State. One of those wins also came against these Yellow Jackets of Georgia Tech, one of Clemson’s oldest rivals. It was the seventh straight win for Clemson in this rivalry, but if there was a positive from the Tech side, it’s that the Jackets looked to be closing the gap dropping a 14-8 decision as a 27½-point pooch. When one considers GT lost 73-7 in 2020, it looks as though things are looking up in Atlanta.

Geoff Collins and his triple option system enter their fourth season at Georgia Tech, which suggests he should have the players he believes he needs to run that system. The transition from former coach Paul Johnson has not been an easy one, however, Collins has used the transfer portal to stock his cupboards after scooping up runners Hassan Hall from Louisville, who averaged 7.2 yards per carry last season, and Dylan McDuffie from Buffalo, who went off for 1,049 yards and 11 touchdowns with the Bulls.

Collins was looking to be far more aggressive this season on offense so he brought Chip Long over from Tulane where he was the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. Long has worked on staffs at Tennessee and Notre Dame as well over the last five years. The hope is Long can connect with returning starting quarterback Jeff Sims and help him reach that next level. It’s Sims' third season as the starter and he’s got a talented backup in Akron transfer Zach Gibson looking to push him for playing time. A healthy QB competition might be just what the Jackets need to jumpstart 2022. To foster that competition, Collins also hired former Heisman winner and college football legend Chris Weinke to be his new QB coach.

The pivot is the most important position on any football team, which makes spotting points in this range with the Tigers a bit of a tough pill to swallow. DJ Uiagalelei is back under center this season, but he had major issues adjusting to the college game in his first year as the Tigers' starter. Expectations were sky high for Uiagalele, but he failed miserably to live up to them after making way too many boneheaded plays and missing way too many of his targets. We don’t want to pick on the kid, but if he can’t stand the heat, the transfer portal awaits with a less high-profile gig if he wants to get the hell out of the kitchen.

To make matters even more complicated on offense, Swinney brought in a new offensive coordinator in Brandon Streeter to try and help turn this around for that struggling offense, but with five-star recruit Cade Klubnik breathing down his neck, it might be difficult to get the already shaky Uiagalelei to settle down. Coach Swinney said this is Uiagalelei's job for now, but don’t be surprised if that leash is very, very short. A disappointing performance in this game, like last year where he went just 18-for-25 for 126 yards, and Uiagalelei can kiss his playing time goodbye. We’re going to trust the Yellow Jackets are going to throw the kitchen sink at Uiagalelei and rattle him to his core. Dude threw more interceptions than touchdowns last season. Is that the kind of QB you want to back when you need to cover a road number as inflated as this? We think not.



Our Pick

Georgia Tech +24 -110 (Risking 2.20 units - To Win: 2.00)

Texas A&M -2 -107 over Arkansas
Iowa State -2½ -110 over Baylor
Buffalo +195 over Eastern Michigan
Texas Tech +7 -110 over Texas
Louisiana Tech +13 -110 over South Alabama
Oregon State +185 over USC