Thursday Night College Football Picks – Clemson, Firmly In The National Title Hunt, Wants To Avoid A Stumble


In past years, Clemson has let down its guard when playing a road game at North Carolina State. Can the Tigers remain focused this time around and not slip up?

Thursday Night College Football PicksClemson Tigers @ North Carolina State Wolfpack – Thursday, September 19
Sport betting line: Clemson -13.5

When the best online betting sites tackle this clash, they will readily point out that this Clemson team is not like past Clemson teams. Yes, in the past, the Tigers have been ambushed at North Carolina State. They were too confident or fell into a rut – call it what you want. At any rate, Clemson teams have in recent years failed to fully focus when taking on the Wolfpack. This year’s Clemson team seems to be made of a firmer fiber. The Tigers took on SEC powerhouse LSU in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl and stood up to their opponent both physically and mentally. Clemson then followed up that win over a high-profile SEC team with another such triumph over Georgia in the 2013 season opener. Clemson coaches and players believe in each other to an extent not seen over the previous five years. This program is transforming the way in which it is seen on a national level, and it is changing the way in which it sees itself, too. That kind of belief is so important in the pressure-packed world of college football, and so it’s hard to see the Tigers – so early into this season – letting down their guard when they have a very legitimate chance of competing for the final BCS national championship in college football.

The smart sports bet might pick Clemson, but betting players would certainly be reasonable to conclude that North Carolina State can still be competitive and even steal a win in this contest. The Wolfpack have upset Clemson before, for one thing. Second, new coach Dave Doeren appears to represent an upgrade from former Wolfpack boss Tom O’Brien. Doeren is bringing more innovative and modernized offensive concepts to the table; it was Doeren’s spread offense which, after all, enabled Northern Illinois to come from the Mid-American Conference and crash the BCS bowl party with last year’s Orange Bowl appearance against Florida State. Doeren took the North Carolina State job before that game, but his imprint was the one most firmly felt by Northern Illinois that season. Doeren’s presence on the sideline will give North Carolina State a better chance of winning. The Wolfpack have had a lot of time to gameplan for this event, and one should expect the home team to be ready. Clemson is going to receive North Carolina State’s best game.

The Tigers simply have more weapons and more resources in reserve than the Wolfpack. North Carolina State can play hard, but if Clemson plays well – and it should – this game shouldn’t be all that close.

College Football Betting Pick: Clemson -13.5. Get a look at the latest odds for college football games in week four of the regular season here.

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