This article is part of our College Football Picks series.
Notre Dame vs. Clemson Betting Odds, Picks, and Predictions for Week 10
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The names in this matchup promise a game that the teams themselves are unlikely to live up to.
Clemson started the season looking rather choppy before scoring three important wins over Wake Forest, NC State, and Florida State. Then, this positive momentum nearly fell apart in a late, comeback win over Syracuse two weeks ago. Conversely, Notre Dame opened the season with what was considered maybe the best loss in the nation, as they hung with juggernaut Ohio State for three quarters before falling 21-10. Since then, the losses have gone from respectable to embarrassing for the Fighting Irish, including a blowout loss at home to Marshall and allowing a dreadful Stanford team to notch its first FBS win of the season.
Any hopes for a national title may have dissipated long ago, but Notre Dame is now 5-3 and coming off its best game of the season with a 41-24 victory at Syracuse last week. The undefeated Tigers were ranked No. 4 in the first edition of this year's College Football Playoff rankings, and, if they win out, they'll guarantee themselves a spot among the final four teams. First, though, they'll have to extend their active winning streak out to 14 this Saturday night in South Bend.
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Notre Dame vs. Clemson Odds for Week 10
Spread: Notre Dame +3.5 (-105 FanDuel Sportsbook), Clemson -3.5 (-110 BetMGM Sportsbook)
Total: 44.5 (-110 BetMGM Sportsbook)
Moneyline: Notre Dame +15 (DraftKings Sportsbook); Clemson -175 (DraftKings Sportsbook)
The spread initially favored Clemson by around 6.5 in the look-ahead markets. However, the biggest shift was in the total, which was initially set at 53 by FanDuel Sportsbook in early October. But, this moved down to about 47.5 to 48 by Halloween, and it continued to drop as the weather report was revealed later in the week. The forecast for Saturday night in South Bend predicts about half an inch of rain and strong winds with gusts up to 40 mph. While Notre Dame's field does feature field turf, this level of wind and rain will definitely have an effect on the ability to pass and hold onto the ball.
Both teams are 4-4 ATS, and the over has hit in four games for Clemson compared to three for Notre Dame.
Notre Dame vs. Clemson Betting Picks This Week
It never feels good to bet with the massive line movement, but, wind and rain aside, I don't think you can go wrong taking this under. According to @statsowar on Twitter, Notre Dame and Clemson both rank near the bottom 30 in the nation for rushing rate over expectation at 8.2 percent and 4.9 percent, respectively. This makes sense given the inconsistency in these passing offenses. Clemson quarterback DJ Uiagalelei has looked improved for much of the season, but he gave up four turnovers before being pulled for freshman Cade Klubnik in the team's 27-21 win against Syracuse. On the other side, Drew Pyne has been underwhelming, completing just 61.8 percent of his passes for a modest 13:4 TD:INT since stepping in for injured starter Tyler Buchner in Week 2. Sheltering these struggling signal-callers should lead to some rather one-dimensional game plans. This won't net great results against two defenses that both rank in the top 30 of The Athletic's stop rate metric, which measures the percentage of a defense's drives that end in punts, turnovers or a turnover on downs. These fan bases may be left pleading with Touchdown Jesus to help their teams find the endzone, but these prayers will likely go unanswered.
Notre Dame vs. Clemson Best Bet: UNDER 44.5 at BetMGM Sportsbook
Notre Dame vs. Clemson Prediction
Running the ball has yielded Notre Dame its best results of the season, as it pounded the rock en route to big wins over North Carolina, BYU and Syracuse. Against these three weak rushing defenses, the Fighting Irish averaged just under five yards per carry on 146 attempts. But, this average falls closer to 3.9 yards per carry in their other five contests, and they'll now be facing a star-studded Clemson defensive front that has allowed just 3.1 yards per attempt. The Tigers' defense could be had on deep passes earlier in the season due to injuries in the secondary. But, the Irish passing offense has little to boast outside of a truly elite tight end in Michael Mayer, causing this unit to rank 84th nationally in yards per pass (5.5). What's more, Clemson's defense was one of the best units at stopping offenses through the air during the month of October, ranking 8th nationally in passing yards per attempt allowed (5.6). There's a good chance this offense could be as miserable as the cold and soggy fans that are in attendance at Notre Dame Stadium.
While the Tigers have their own glaring flaws, the Fighting Irish aren't built to take advantage of them. Clemson's success rate on early downs ranks 107th in the nation at 63.7 percent, but Notre Dame is allowing an early-down success rate of 70.8 percent (101st nationally), per @statsowar. Meanwhile, the Tigers' offense has been great at converting third downs with the legs of Uiagalelei and running back Will Shipley. The Fighting Irish pass rush headlined by Isaiah Foskey averages three sacks per game, but failing to force many third-and-long situations should nullify this unit's effectiveness. It's also unlikely that Uiagalelei will repeat his most recent turnover-prone performance, as the Irish rank last nationally with just five turnovers forced in 2022. Clemson's biggest advantage will undoubtedly come in the red zone: the Tigers rank third in the nation with a 97.4 red-zone scoring rate, while Notre Dame has allowed touchdowns on 17 of 20 opponent red-zone trips, which is also dead last nationally. While things could still be choppy between the 20s for Clemson, this disparity in scoring efficiency should lead to a comfortable final margin.
Final Score: Clemson 17, Notre Dame 7