- The Miami Hurricanes travel to Death Valley to face the Clemson Tigers in Week 6’s premier game at 7:30pm EST on ABC
- Manny Diaz’s team is getting more than two touchdowns on the road in this battle of top ten teams
- See odds, spread and best bets for the game within the preview below
In the midst of a college football season dominated by the impact of COVID-19, the Miami Hurricanes have been one of the year’s feel-good stories through their first three games.
That story comes to its most dramatic point this week when Miami travels to Clemson to play Trevor Lawrence and the top team in the nation. The Tigers have dispatched their opponents this season with ease, but are coming off a win against Virginia in which they didn’t cover the spread and gave up their highest point total of the year, 41-23.
Following its 52-10 blowout win against Florida State on September 26th, Miami will have had a couple of weeks to prepare for its biggest game of the year. The Hurricanes are ranked inside the top ten of the AP Top 25 for the first time since the 2018 preseason, but haven’t won a game against a top-ten opponent since they beat third-ranked Notre Dame 41-8 in 2017.
Miami has been a bettors dream team this season, and have the look of a favorable option in this one according to the Miami vs Clemson betting trends.
#1 Clemson vs #7 Miami Odds
|Miami Hurricanes||+14.5 (-110)||+450||O 63.5 (-110)|
|Clemson Tigers||-14.5 (-110)||-625||U 63.5 (-110)|
Odds Taken on Oct. 7 from DraftKings
King of the Mountain?
Lawrence has long-surpassed the point of fans discussing NFL teams ‘tanking’ for the chance to draft him, but Miami quarterback D’Eriq King has given the Canes exactly what they needed to rejuvenate their offense this season.
One of the biggest factors in placing a wager on this game is a bettor’s confidence in how much King brings to the table.
D’Eriq King: Three straight games w/ an 80+ grade.
No Miami QB has done that over the past six seasons pic.twitter.com/4ZrJcIbGCv
— PFF College (@PFF_College) October 1, 2020
In King’s career as a starting quarterback, he is 3-2 against teams ranked in the Top 25, but two of those wins came against South Florida in 2017-18. Last season, two of the four games he played for Houston came against No. 4 Oklahoma and No. 20 Washington State. Houston covered in both games, but lost them both outright.
Miami’s biggest win this season came at Louisville on September 19th, where the Hurricanes covered as 2.5-point favorites and won convincingly, 47-34.
In the games against ranked opponents that King played this season and last, he is a combined 45-for-81 passing, for 620 yards, six touchdowns and no interceptions. Against the Sooners and Cougars in 2019, he also ran for a combined 197 yards and three scores. King hasn’t always put up the gaudiest numbers against ranked opponents, but he’s been efficient, hasn’t turned the ball over, and covered the spread every time.
Trouble In the Trenches
Make no mistake, just about every player on the Clemson roster can be as talented as any player in all of college football, but the Tigers come into this game somewhat thin on the defensive front.
Defensive end Justin Foster was an expected starter this season, but has yet to play under mysterious behind-the-scenes circumstances. Sophomore defensive tackle Tyler Davis has been slow to recover from a knee sprain he suffered against Wake Forest to start the season, and his backup, Ruke Orhorhorom is out for the rest of the season with a meniscus injury.
The only significant question mark for Miami is the status of offensive tackle John Campbell Jr., but sophomore OT Zion Nelson was strong in his place against FSU. Clemson has still been stingy and allowed an average of just 2.3 yards-per-carry and 90 total yards on the ground per game.
Of course, the Tigers haven’t faced a running back as talented as Cam’Ron Harris this season, either.
The fastest NCAAF ball carrier from week 2 was @CanesFootball RB Cam’Ron Harris (@polo_man_cam) hit 22.0 MPH in only 6.5 seconds on this 75-yard TD#myRAmaxspeed | ? @ESPNCFB pic.twitter.com/nUX77UmkjD
— Recruiting Analytics (@RAanalytics) September 21, 2020
Harris is averaging more than eight yards-per-carry running the ball this season. Nobody is expecting him to keep that pace against the Tigers, but if Miami is going to make things interesting against Clemson, he’s going to have to be a big part of the game plan.
In his last 30 home games against conference foes, Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney is 28-2 overall, but just 14-15-1 ATS.
Miami has played decently on defense this season, but hasn’t proven to be a unit that is going to shut down Lawrence – or Clemson running back Travis Etienne – for four quarters, by any means.
The Hurricanes don’t seem likely to upset the Tigers, but they have averaged nearly 500 yards of offense per game with a quarterback that doesn’t turn the ball over against big-time competition.
Take the points in this one, and enjoy what promises to be the game of the week in Week 6.
The Pick: Miami +14.5 (-110)