College Football Betting Primer: ACC

By Ryan Fowler

With three titles apiece, Clemson and Florida State have won the last six ACC Championships. All signs point to the Tigers or Seminoles embracing their inner-vise, clamping down on the conference and squeezing out a seventh straight. However, the reigning National Champions lost quarterback Deshaun Watson, running back Wayne Gallman and wide receiver Mike Williams to the NFL. With Clemson losing so much talent to the pros, our college football picks engine projects less than a 33-percent chance for them to win the Atlantic Division. Florida State will miss Dalvin Cook – now with the Minnesota Vikings – but the Seminoles don't rebuild, they reload.

Prediction Machine ACC Favorite - FSU
Florida State is our favorite to win the ACC title in 2017 with a 33.6 percent probability compared to Clemson's second-best probability of 24.2 percent. The Seminoles (+110 ACC Champ Futures bet) return 13 starters – four on offense and seven on defense along with their kicker/punter tandem. Redshirt sophomore quarterback Deondre Francois completed 58.8 percent of his passes for 3,350 yards with 20 touchdowns and seven interceptions last season. That's strong production from a young QB, but Jimbo Fisher's pro-style offense needs balance and where true freshman and top running back recruit Cam Akers will need to produce as his touches-per-game increase. With so much focus on the quarterback and running game, the pressure falls on a FSU offensive line which allowed 36 sacks in 13 games last season. If the unit doesn't improve, Francois may not make it to the ACC title game.

Prediction Machine ACC Value Pick – Miami (FL)
The bridesmaid of the ACC remains the Coastal Division, which if you're looking for a value futures bet is a good place to start. The Miami Hurricanes are our college football picks engine favorite to win their division with a 57.8 probability. The gap between first and second in the Coastal Division is significant as Virginia Tech's 24.5 percent ranks second. If the division rolls out a red carpet for the Hurricanes to walk into the ACC title game, the +600 futures bet is appealing. Granted, Mark Richt lost starting quarterback Brad Kaaya to the NFL, but Miami returns 15 starters. They are highlighted by one of the best offensive lines in the country. Running back Mark Walton ranked fourth in the ACC in rushing last season behind Cook, Lamar Jackson and N.C. State's Matt Dayes. He averaged nearly 86 yards per game with 14 touchdowns.

Prediction Machine ACC Team to Fade - Louisville
Lamar Jackson's 3,543 passing yards, 1,571 rushing yards and *gasp* 51 total touchdowns a season ago was an amazing feat, but no matter how elite he was – the Cardinals still lost three straight games to end the season. Heading into 2017, Louisville (+600 futures bet) only returns three other starters on offense, two of which are on an offensive line which allowed the third-most sacks in FBS last year (47). Those challenges aside, Louisville would still need to leapfrog Clemson and Florida State to earn a trip to the ACC Championship Game. Hard pass.

Other College Football Betting Primers:
Big Ten
Big 12
Pac 12