The Atlantic Coast Conference, also known as the ACC, is known as more of a basketball conference than a football conference. The addition of Syracuse during Big East realignment didn’t help the division's reputation. Despite that label, the ACC has had two championship teams in Florida State and Clemson in recent seasons. They’ve joined the SEC on the short list of powerhouse conferences that are sure to contribute a true title contender each year. With odds from BetOnline, here is a look at the odds for the top teams to win the ACC.
Kelly Bryant will be a big factor for Clemson in 2018.
Clemson may not have the same historic run of excellence as Alabama has over the years, but the Tigers sure are close to that level with the way they play under Dabo Swinney. The Tigers are the clear favorite to win the ACC this season. They have a decisive advantage over the rest of the conference on the defensive end of the field. With so much firepower, things tend to be nice and easy for their offense.
Clemson’s defensive line is their primary source of defensive strength. More than just a pass rush or collection of run stuffers, the Clemson D-line is able to handle whatever is thrown at it, and usually stops it for a loss. Clelin Ferrell and Dexter Lawrence are both potential top-ten picks in the 2019 NFL Draft on the defensive line. Opposing offenses will not enjoy facing the Tigers in 2018.
Offensively, Clemson has Kelly Bryant back at quarterback. Bryant has never been lauded for his ability to throw downfield which is something that Clemson is used to having in their QB. Clemson was spoiled with the QB play of Deshaun Watson when he attended the school.
Bryant is a bit like current Redskins quarterback Alex Smith. He’s serviceable and has been solid for the Tigers since taking over the starting job after Watson’s departure. With the Clemson defense being as good as it is, solid quarterback play will be good enough to get the win on most nights.
Clemson had a wonderful recruiting year as they have the last few years. They’ve had a lot of success on the field and its translated to new and talented personnel. Their #1 ACC recruiting class could make an immediate impact. In addition to a number of top rated defensive linemen to continue the Clemson way, the Tigers made off with #4 overall receiver Derion Kendrick and #7 overall receiver Justyn Ross. Look for both on the field this year.
As a wager, laying the $175 to make $100 on Clemson isn’t particularly alluring, but sometimes you need to look at this as an investment. Clemson is far and away the best team in the conference and should at least have a chance to play for the conference championship.
Clemson Tigers -175?
BetOnline is our TOP ONLINE SPORTSBOOK for betting on College Football. Deposit Bonus: 50% up to $1000
Last season was a coming out party of sorts for the Miami Hurricanes. The team emerged from the relative obscurity it had been toiling in and did so as a fun-loving underdog story. The team brought the fun and swagger back to a college football landscape that is often stifled by the Nick Sabans of the world. While Miami didn’t get to the College Football Playoff last season, they definitely made a statement. The U is back as a power in college football.
This year, Miami and its turnover creating defense hope to stay at the top of the ACC picture. They ended 2017 poorly and will be looking to rebound quickly in 2018 to get the past out of their minds. Three losses left a foul taste to the end of what was a good campaign.
Prior to their disappointing end to 2017, the Miami Hurricanes defense had been stellar. They had the #5 turnover margin in football forcing a -5 on the season. That tally also lead the ACC.
The big question for Miami will be whether or not they can get good enough quarterback play to lead to a real improvement from last season. Malik Rosier is a senior but that doesn't mean much. He had 26 touchdown passes last season but had a very Jeckyll and Hyde feel to him. He had 14 interceptions, a turnover number that simply won’t fly in a conference where defenses like those at Florida State exist. A fanbase would normally be happy with a 5th year QB returning to lead a 10 win team, but Rosier’s 3 win losing streak has Miami fans restless heading into the 2018 season.
Lorenzo Lingard is an absolute physical freak of an 18 year old and will see the field this year after committing out of Orange City, Florida. He is the #2 RB recruit in the nation from the 2017 class and the prize of Miami's haul of newcomers. His physical run style translates well to the ACC and his ability to break tackles could be seen early on highlight reels. He is the main reason Miami received the #2 rating for ACC recruiting classes. He was the only 5-Star in the entire group.
The Hurricanes have something working in their favor that is out of their control. Their schedule is more forgiving than some of their ACC foes. The Canes avoid having to take on Clemson this season. They do take on Florida State, but that is a home game. Outside of a trip to Virginia Tech, the road schedule doesn’t look terribly daunting.
This could be a "rebuilding" year for the Seminoles.
Transition is the word for Florida State in 2018. The team is going through a lot of changes and personnel turnover leaves a lot of question marks for the Seminoles headed into the 2018 season.
When you think of Florida State, you think of strong football players, Bobby Bowden, and the Seminole Chomp. Well, long gone are the days of Bowden. This year's football players are good, but they certainly haven't had a chance to gel and have lost the head coach that recruited them.
I guess it’s a good thing the chop remains right?!
This is not going to be the best season in Florida State football history. The team has lost a ton of talent, primarily on the defensive end and they’re down their headman as well. Coach Jimbo Fisher is now at Texas A&M. With him went some transfers and the 2017 recruiting class took a hit. That's a blow for a team that badly needed to re-fill its store of talent after several good years have drained the program.
Willie Taggart bailed from his last job at Oregon to join FSU. He seems passionate, but he has a lot of catching up to do. An Oregon-type system and a new side of the country leave FSU scrambling for talent and system proficiency. It really is a bearish sign for the Seminole faithful.
If Florida State is going to have a good year, they are going to have to do it with a ton of new faces on defense. Derwin James lead the defensive unit in 2017 and is now gone. He was drafted in the first round by the Los Angeles Chargers.
The Seminoles lose eight starters on defense heading into the start of the 2018 season. While there is always plenty of talent on the Florida State football roster, that kind of turnover will cause a defense to lack continuity until they get more game time in 2018. A lack of unity and experience will hurt this team as they go through their coaching change.
Nobody likes laying big money on a heavy favorite in college football, but a value investment is a value investment. Clemson is on another level from anyone in the ACC and should cruise to the title in 2018.