Clemson Tigers-Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Betting Angles and Pick

Handicapper Preston Johnson, aka the Sports Cheetah, breaks down Thursday's national spotlight game in Atlanta. Will fifth-ranked Clemson win by double digits at Georgia Tech?

Clemson Tigers at Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (+9.5, 57), Thurs., 7:30 p.m. ET

No. 5 Clemson has lost five straight games at Bobby Dodd Stadium. Now the Tigers are being asked not only to win, but win by double digits.

Get All Expert Picks Now for $9.99 a month

They're favored by 9.5 points over the 3-0 Yellow Jackets, who crushed Vanderbilt 38-7 last week. The home team has dominated this rivalry, covering six straight, and the Under is a combined 8-0-1 in these teams' last nine September games.

Sportsline Image
EXCLUSIVE TO SPORTSLINE PRO MEMBERS
Thu 09/22 7:30 PM EDT
Clemson -460 O/U 58
Georgia Tech +360 +10.5
C
A
C
CLEM
GATECH
VIEW FULL GAME ANALYSIS

Tigers QB Deshaun Watson threw three interceptions in closer-than-expected wins over Auburn and Troy to start the season, then was brilliant in limited action last week against overmatched South Carolina State.

SPORTS CHEETAH'S TAKE

My line: Clemson -10, 55.5

With a short week of preparation for Clemson heading into this game at Georgia Tech and what has turned into a massive matchup with Louisville on deck, I was hoping I'd be able to back the Yellow Jackets here Thursday night.

Tech has been a bet-on team early in the 2016 season after falling victim to multiple injuries a year ago and losing five games by seven or fewer points. They were minus-7 in turnover margin in 2015 after being plus-11 the year before. I classified the Yellow Jackets as one of 2015's unluckiest teams in my 2016 NCAAF Guide in the preseason and expected them to bounce back this fall.

The line is currently 9.5 or 10 depending on the book, but my personal number for the game is also 10 even after accounting for the Tigers' rough situational spot. I won't be making a play unless this line comes up a few points before kickoff Thursday night.

LINE MOVEMENT

Nearly 70 percent of the bets are on Clemson, but heavy hitters are on Georgia Tech. This line opened as high as 11 at some books and has fallen based on those professional plays.

BookMaker.eu has not budged from its Clemson -9.5 opener.

"We do expect some smart money on the home dog at some point, somewhat surprised it hasn't come already," said Scott Cooley, the offshore book's odds consultant. "Georgia Tech is always a live dog in these situations. Clemson can't get caught looking ahead with Louisville up next."

Over bettors jumped on the opening total of 56 and it's at 57 or 57.5 depending on the book. All three Clemson games have stayed Under this year, while Tech's two lined games have resulted in an Under and a push.

LAST WEEK

Clemson destroyed South Carolina State 59-0 after two subpar offensive performances. The Tigers led 31-0 after one period and could have easily scored 100. Because the coaches agreed to shorten the third and fourth quarters from 15 to 12 minutes, many books voided all bets, angering Clemson backers who laid 53.5 points.

Tech racked up 511 total yards and pummeled Vanderbilt 38-7, easily covering the 6.5-point spread, as QB Justin Thomas ran the triple option to near-perfection.

SPORTSLINE EXPERTS

Data scientist Stephen Oh, who's 15-10 in his last 25 college football picks, has released a total play on the game. Get all the expert Clemson-Georgia Tech picks here.

Preston Johnson has been using analytics, game theory and his Master's Degree in Sport Psychology to profit from football, basketball, and baseball betting for several years. He's made multiple appearances on ESPN1100 Las Vegas, NBC Sports, SiriusXM and other radio shows throughout the nation to discuss his expertise. A high-volume bettor and sound practitioner of bankroll management, Preston went a documented 165-110 (60 percent) in college football and 61-33 (65 percent) in the NFL last year. His work also can be found at wagertalk.com.