Clemson @

Wake Forest

Sat, Sep 24
9:00 AM Pacific
Rotation: 339
Odds: Wake Forest +7.5, Total: 55.5

Game Analysis

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Strong Opinion – WAKE FOREST (+7.5 -115)  27   Clemson  28

Wake Forest has a good offense with Sam Hartman at quarterback and Wake Forest gained over 400 yards of offense at 5.5 yards per play in last year’s 27-48 loss at Clemson. I think the Demon Deacons can score around that number of points again, but I don’t see Clemson’s offense topping 30 points.

The offensive explosion that the Tigers experienced in last year’s win over Wake Forest was an aberration, as it was one of only 2 games in which they managed 6.0 yards per play or more. For the season Clemson was 0.4 yards per play worse than average offensively with their starters in the game while averaging only 5.1 yppl. The Tigers are better this season, but they’ve only been 0.3 yppl better than average, as their 6.4 yppl have come against 3 teams that would combine to allow 6.1 yppl to an average offensive team. The only decent defense that the Tigers faced was Georgia Tech and they managed just 4.9 yppl in that game with two of their touchdowns coming on blocked punts.

Wake Forest has looked much better defensively this season, as the Demon Deacons have yielded just 4.6 yppl to a trio of teams that would combine to average 5.4 yppl against an average defense. They held an improved Vanderbilt offense to just 259 yards at 4.3 yppl and a better than average Liberty attack to just 5.7 yppl in last week’s upset loss. Clemson is projected to post very mediocre offensive numbers in this game and the market continues to overrate the Tigers’ offense.

Clemson’s defense has allowed just 14 points per game, but that unit doesn’t look as dominating as they’ve been in recent years. They’ve registered just 5 sacks in 3 games and have allowed 65% completions in 3 games against bad offensive teams and allowing 235 pass yards at 5.7 yards per pass play is really bad against a trio of offenses (Georgia Tech, Furman and Louisiana Tech) that would combine to average only 5.2 yppl against an average defensive team. That is not a function of garbage time, as their backup defense has allowed only 4.8 yppp in garbage time. Clemson’s pass defense is not as good as it usually is and they’ve been worse than average so far this season. Wake Forest won’t be able to run, as the Tigers are still dominating in run defense but Hartman should post pretty good passing numbers in this game.

The market is calling for 24 points for Wake, which I think they’ll top, and for 31.5 points for Clemson, which I don’t think is reasonable given that their offense isn’t any better than Wake’s defense.

I’ll consider Wake Forest a Strong Opinion at +7 points or more.

  • Team Stats
  • Game Log
  • Clemson
  • Wake Forest


  • Run Plays 34.0 26.7
  • Run Yards 196.7 82.0
  • YPRP 5.8 3.1


  • Pass Comp 22.3 25.3
  • Pass Att 34.7 39.3
  • Comp % 64.4% 64.4%
  • Pass Yards 266.0 242.7
  • Sacks 1.7 1.7
  • Sack Yards 10.0 8.0
  • Sack % 4.6% 4.1%
  • Pass Plays 36.3 41.0
  • Net Pass Yards 256.0 234.7
  • YPPP 7.0 5.7


  • Total Plays 70.3 67.7
  • Total Yards 452.7 316.7
  • YPPL 6.4 4.7


  • Int 0.3 1.7
  • Int % 1.0% 4.2%
  • Fumbles 1.0 0.7
  • Turnovers 1.3 2.3
  • Points 41.3 14.0
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