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How and what to watch for No. 1 Clemson vs. No. 4 Notre Dame

The biggest star in the sport won’t be available for the biggest game of the season.

NCAA Football: Notre Dame at Pittsburgh Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The biggest game of the season up until this point is happening Saturday night as the undefeated Clemson Tigers travel to South Bend to take on the also undefeated Notre Dame Fighting Irish.

The storyline surrounding this game is the absence of Clemson star QB Trevor Lawrence due to Covid-19 protocols. In his place will be true freshman D.J. Uiagalelei, who performed pretty well in his first start against Boston College last week. Against the Eagles he went 30/41 for 342 yards and three total scores. It was a close game, but that wasn’t because of the signal caller. When they don’t have to throw the ball, they have Travis Etienne, who averages more than six yards per carry and is one of the best backs in the sport. Obviously this is going to be a massive challenge for the Notre Dame defense, but they’ll be up to the task. The Irish give up less than 275 total yards and just 93.7 yards on the ground on average. They’re good through the air too, allowing just two passing scores all season.

Notre Dame has QB Ian Book who has been very good, but the offense is powered on the ground. The Irish have had more rushing yards than passing yards in the majority of its games this season and have scored 11 more touchdowns on the ground than through the air. Running back Kyren Williams has performed just as good as Etienne, but has two fewer scores. Notre Dame hasn’t seen a defense like Clemson’s yet though. The Tigers give up just under 100 yards on the ground each week on average and about 175 yards through the air.

Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming

You can watch Clemson vs. Notre Dame on Saturday, November 7 at 7:30 p.m. ET on NBC, or you can stream it via the NBC app with a cable or streaming service login.

Point Spread, Totals, Odds, Trends

Point spread: Clemson (-5) vs Notre Dame
Point Total: 50.5
Money line: Clemson (-195), Notre Dame (+155)

  • Clemson is 2-6 ATS in its last eight
  • The total has gone over in four of Clemson’s last five games
  • ND is 2-4 ATS in its last six games
  • ND is undefeated in its last 10 games.

Betting splits

Clemson: (71% of handle, 60% percent of bets)
Notre Dame: (29% of handle, 40% percent of bets)

The Best Bet

The best bet is the point total. Both of these teams have elite offenses, even with Clemson’s starting QB out. Even though they’re each playing very good defenses, 50.5 seems like an easy number to cross. Clemson and ND are averaging 46.1 and 34.8 points, respectively. That’s easily enough to hit the over.

Pick: Over 50.5

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