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Brendan's Best Bets: ACC Preseason Win Total Bets

Updated: Aug 22, 2023

A new season of College Football is almost here. With a new season comes an opportunity to have a little extra change in your pocket.

In the coming weeks leading up to kickoff on August 26, I will go from conference to conference sharing my preseason win total bets that are worth putting some coin on.

For this edition of Brendan's Best Bets, we are taking a look at ACC preseason win totals. Odds are provided by FanDuel Sportsbook.

Clemson Over 9.5 Wins (-154)

Clemson had the best assistant coach hire of the offseason. Dabo Swinney went out and hired TCU offensive coordinator Garrett Riley. The offense should see improvement with Cade Klubnik back at QB and Riley coming in. Clemson always has an elite defense and that shouldn’t change.

The Tigers play their toughest games at home. They host Florida State and Notre Dame. They do have tough road trips at Duke, Syracuse, Miami, NC State and South Carolina. They can trip up twice and still hit the over. This team is a National Championship contender and will likely be favored in every game they play.

Louisville Under 8.5 (-158)

Louisville has one of the easiest schedules in the ACC. The Cardinals avoid playing Florida State and Clemson. This win total opened at 7.5 but it’s been inflated to 8.5 wins. Despite not playing the top two teams in the conference, there are still plenty of losable games on the schedule for Jeff Brohm.

Some of those tough games include at NC State, vs Notre Dame, at Pitt, at Miami and vs Kentucky. The front seven on defense worries me and I think they will get outplayed at the line of scrimmage against all five of the teams I previously mentioned.

NC State Over 6.5 Wins (-140)

Dave Doeren has been the head coach of NC State since the 2013 season and he’s only won less than six regular season games three times. Sure, the Wolfpack lost quarterback Devin Leary, who was banged up last season, and offensive coordinator Tim Beck, but I wouldn’t be shocked if both spots have been upgraded this offseason. Brennan Armstrong comes in at quarterback and reunites with former offensive coordinator Robert Anae.

The Wolfpack lost five of their top six tacklers but Doeren knows how to coach a defense alongside fifth year defensive coordinator Tony Gibson. Every road game on NC State’s schedule is winnable. The Wolfpack play their four toughest opponents all at home (Clemson, Miami, North Carolina, Notre Dame). Having a winning record is a pretty attainable expectation for this team.

North Carolina Under 8.5 Wins (-150)

A ton of hype has been put on quarterback Drake Maye and deservedly so. He burst onto the scene last year, throwing for 4,321 yards and 38 touchdowns. While I don’t doubt his abilities, it’s hard to see him replicating those stats seeing as opposing defenses are now fully aware of his capabilities. This offense will still be really good, but the defense is worrisome.

The pass defense needs improvement from last season and I am doubtful that it will as the Tar Heels only return one starter in the secondary. North Carolina faces some good quarterbacks on the schedule so most of their games will be shootouts. The Tar Heels' opening game against South Carolina will test them right away. Getting to nine wins would require a defensive improvement and I just don’t see it.

Pitt Over 6.5 Wins (-192)

Pat Narduzzi has won at least seven regular season games in six out of his eight years he’s been at Pitt and one of those years was the COVID season. Pitt lost its top four tacklers on defense, but, just like NC State, I trust Narduzzi and sixth year defensive coordinator Randy Bates to have a good unit. The Panthers are also good along the line of scrimmage. The offensive line returns multiple All-ACC caliber players.

While the schedule isn’t easy, it certainly isn’t an absolute gauntlet. The Panthers avoid Clemson in ACC play. This line should really be set at 7.5 wins. If Pitt has a good offensive line and defense, getting to seven wins should be no problem.

Syracuse Over 6.5 Wins (+132)

It was the tale of two halves of the season for Syracuse in 2022. The Orange opened the year 6-0 before finishing 1-6. Sure, the schedule was more difficult down the stretch, but this team lost some games that they had no business losing. Syracuse returns seven of its top eight tacklers from a season ago and the Orange return Garrett Shrader at quarterback and stud tight end Oronde Gadsden (matchup nightmare).

Head coach Dino Babers was under job security pressure last season and was the pressure was relieved from his shoulders a little bit after the 6-0 start. If Syracuse has a bad year this season, he could be back on the hot seat, so this team and coaching staff is motivated. The Orange have one of the easier schedules in the Power Five. Syracuse should have a solid defense and that should propel them to the over.

Virginia Tech Under 5.5 wins (-148)

Brent Pry enters year two as the head man in Blacksburg. On paper, the talent seems to have improved from last season. Pry hit the portal hard and landed some day one starters. The Hokies went 3-8 last year and had an abysmal offense. That offense should improve as they have completely upgraded at the skill positions this offseason.

Virginia Tech plays 10 Power Five opponents and plays at Marshall. There are not a whole lot of easy games on the schedule. While I do think they improved this offseason, this team needs to make a bowl game to hit the over. The depth in the trenches just isn’t there yet and the schedule isn't easy. Take the under here.

To recap, here are the bets we are making:

  • Clemson Over 9.5 Wins (-154)

  • Louisville Under 8.5 Wins (-158)

  • NC State Over 6.5 Wins (-140)

  • North Carolina Under 8.5 Wins (-150)

  • Pitt Over 6.5 Wins (-192)

  • Syracuse Over 6.5 Wins (+132)

  • Virginia Tech Under 5.5 Wins (-148)

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