The second-ranked Clemson Tigers and third-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes meet in the College Football Playoff semifinal for the second straight year on Friday. Clemson, who’s making its sixth College Football Playoff appearance, beat the Buckeyes 29-23 a season ago. Clemson enters the Sugar Bowl with the third-ranked scoring offense, averaging 44.9 points per game. Ohio State, meanwhile, is scoring 42.5 points per contest, which ranks seventh in the nation.
Kickoff from the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans is set for 8 p.m. ET. The Tigers are 7.5-point favorites in the latest Clemson vs. Ohio State odds from William Hill Sportsbook, while the over-under for total points scored is 66.5. Before locking in any Ohio State vs. Clemson picks, you need to see what college football expert Barrett Sallee has to say.
Sallee is a true insider — a CBS Sports analyst, SiriusXM host, Heisman voter and consistently one of the top CBS Sports experts picking games against the spread — and his best bets have helped bring in huge returns. He debuted with SportsLine in 2017 and has delivered in a big way.
He went 59-35-2 (63 percent, plus $2,037) on all his college football picks for SportsLine in 2019, and he entered the week on a sizzling 74-45 streak on his best bets since the start of last year. In addition, Sallee has a keen eye for Clemson. In fact, he has gone an incredible 11-2 on his last 13 against-the-spread picks involving the Tigers. Anyone who has followed him is way up.
- Ohio State vs. Clemson spread: Tigers -7.5
- Ohio State vs. Clemson over-under: 66.5 points
- Ohio State vs. Clemson money line: Clemson -300, Ohio State +240
- OSU: The Buckeyes are 3-3 against the spread in their last six games
- CLEM: The Tigers are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 bowl games
Why Clemson can cover
Quarterback Trevor Lawrence is 34-1 in his career at Clemson. He leads an offense that is averaging 507.6 yards per game this season, which ranks 10th in the nation. The Heisman Trophy finalist has thrown for 2,753 yards, 22 touchdowns and four interceptions this season and he’s thrown two or more touchdowns in seven of his last eight outings. Last season against the Buckeyes, Lawrence threw for 259 yards and two scores.
Defensively, the Tigers are giving up just 298.5 yards per game this season. That’s the sixth-best mark in college football. The defense played a huge role in Clemson’s victory against Notre Dame in the ACC Championship Game, sacking Ian Book six times while holding the Fighting Irish to just 10 points.
Why Ohio State can cover
The Buckeyes feature one of the most potent rushing attacks in the country, averaging 275.7 yards per game on the ground. Ohio State’s rushing attack is led by Trey Sermon, who’s recorded 675 rushing yards and three touchdowns this season. Sermon is averaging 8.0 yards per carry, while Master Teague III leads the team with six rushing touchdowns.
Receivers Garrett Wilson and Chris Olave are also critical on offense for the Buckeyes, who average 253.5 passing yards per game. Wilson has 38 catches and five touchdowns, while Olave is averaging 14.7 yards per reception and has also found the end zone five times. Olave finished with three catches for 50 yards and a touchdown in last season’s loss against the Tigers.
How to make Clemson vs. Ohio State picks
Sallee has analyzed this matchup from all sides and he is leaning under on the total. He also has discovered a critical X-factor that has him jumping all over one side of the spread. He’s only sharing it at SportsLine.
So who wins Clemson vs. Ohio State in the Sugar Bowl? And what critical X-factor makes one side of the spread a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the Ohio State vs. Clemson spread you should be all over, all from the expert who is 11-2 in his last 13 against-the-spread picks involving the Tigers.
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