Clemson vs. Georgia Betting Preview and Predictions: Which Powerhouse Has the Edge?

Georgia vs. Clemson is the must-see game of the weekend’s NCAAF slate, featuring two of the Top 5 college programs in the country with legitimate national championship credentials and two of the Top 5 Heisman Trophy favorites this season. It’s an epic start to the college football season and the betting.
Nikki Adams
Wed, September 1, 10:09 AM EDT

Clemson vs Georgia Betting Preview & Predictions: Which Powerhouse Has the Edge?

When: Saturday, September 4

Game Time: 7:30 PM ET

Where: Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, NC

TV Network: ABC

Clemson vs Georgia Spread: Clemson -3

Clemson vs Georgia Total: 50.5

The No.5 ranked Georgia Bulldogs head to Charlotte, North Carolina, to take on the No.3 Clemson Tigers in a marquee matchup that’s attracting a lot of attention from the media, college football analysts, and fans everywhere. The backstory is equally captivating, pitting two of the early Heisman Trophy contenders against each other: Georgia quarterback J.T. Daniels and Clemson quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei. The latter is the second-best bet at +1100, while Daniels is the fourth-best bet at +1400. How this matchup unfolds is likely to have far-reaching consequences for J.T. Daniels’ and Uiagalelei’s bid, respectively.

In the broad spectrum of the season, who wins and who loses might not be as impactful so long as it is a close and competitive game. A close game that goes the way of either side will have the pair maintain solid footing inside the College Football Playoff frame. Should a blowout happen then the team on the wrong side of such an outcome might be in a spot of bother.

So, how will this game unfold? Will it fall in line with the Georgia vs. Clemson Odds that corner this game with the hosts? Or will the Bulldogs throw down the gauntlet with an upset win over the Tigers on the road?

Clemson vs Georgia Preview

Clemson vs Georgia Odds

The Georgia Bulldogs are coming off a solid season that went 8-4-0 overall and 8-2-0 in conference play. They were good enough against most of their conference rivals except SEC heavyweights Alabama Crimson Tide and Florida. Georgia was thoroughly outclassed by Alabama in a 41-24 loss and then by Florida in a 44-28 loss. J.T. Daniels didn’t start in either of those heavy defeats. In November, the junior got his start and led the Bulldogs to three straight wins over Mississippi State, South Carolina, and Missouri. He then helped the Bulldogs to a come-from-behind 24-21 win over the Cincinnati Bearcats in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl.

J.T. Daniels missed a good portion of last season due to injury, but his return rejuvenated the Bulldogs. He went for 1,231 yards, 10 touchdowns, and 2 interceptions. Georgia is set to debut a revamped offense under Todd Monken. Daniels will be without star wideout George Pickens, who is out for the foreseeable with a knee injury. Players to watch on the receiving corps are Kearis Jackson, Jermaine Burton, and LSU transfer Arik Gilbert. Last season’s top-notch rushers are set to return this season, including Zamir White and James Cook. The Bulldogs defense was superb in 2020 but for the two games in which it was decimated. 

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The Clemson Tigers capped a standout 10-2-0 season (7-2-0 in ACC) with a CFP semi-final appearance, but they lost 49-28 to Ohio State Buckeyes. It’s the dawn of a new era at Clemson after bidding farewell to a generational talent, quarterback Trevor Lawrence in the 2021 NFL draft. Lawrence’s departure leaves a void on the offense, but head coach Dabo Swinney is confident D.J. Uiagalelei is a capable replacement. Uiagalelei stepped in for Lawrence twice last season and went 1-1 in those game. He beat Boston College but lost to Notre Dame in a dizzying shootout. 

Although Clemson is starting anew at the quarterback position, it’s an established program that continues to churn out enviable talent and consistently competes for the most coveted prizes in college football. Uiagalelei might be a bit of an unknown, but the offense is talented across the board. TE Brandon Galloway, WR E.J. Williams, WR Frank Ladson, and WR Joseph Ngata are some of the Next-Gen stars to watch for on Clemson’s offense. In addition, the defense is exceptional, and it should have another solid season after finishing first in the ACC in total and scoring defense. 

Clemson vs Georgia Odds & Betting

Books opened with the Clemson Tigers tipped as the three-point chalk and the total on 52 points. Since going to press, the needle hasn’t budged overly. This matchup is on neutral ground, which plays a factor in the rather standard field-goal line.

Given the hype that precedes Georgia vs. Clemson, it’s possible to see this line shrink before kick-off. So for those bettors that fancy the road underdogs, pulling the trigger on Georgia +3 is worth considering. Otherwise, those bettors leaning towards Clemson, waiting to see how this line moves before game time is an option worth considering. 

Key Injury Update:

Georgia: WR George Pickens (knee) out indefinitely; WR Dominick Blaylock (knee) is out; WR Arik Gilbert (personal), RB Kenny McIntosh (arm), and OL Warren Ericson (hand) are questionable; TE Darnell Washington (foot) and DB Tykee Smith (foot) are doubtful.

Clemson: WR Joseph Ngata (hamstring injury), WR Brannon Spector (shoulder), CB Fred Davis II (suspension), and DT DeMonte Capehart (knee) are questionable; WR Justyn Ross (neck) and QB Taisun Phommachanh (Achilles) are probable; OL John Williams (undisclosed) is out for the season.

Clemson vs Georgia Prediction

Georgia is getting Clemson early in the season, which has to be an advantage. If ever there’s a perfect time to take on an established powerhouse program it’s at the start of the season before the team has enough time to establish chemistry and find its rhythm. The same could be said for Clemson too.

In this case, the balance tips in favor of Georgia because of the quarterback matchup. Daniels has more experience than Uiagalelei has, having started more games with Georgia. He’s also been in more pressure-packed games, which this matchup is undoubtedly going to be. This doesn’t mean that Uiagalelei should be dismissed out of hand, but being in Lawrence’s shadow might be uncomfortable at first. Moreover, it’s hard to see the Clemson offense being explosive right away, as it was with Lawrence as the offensive pivot. So, the bet here is to back Georgia as the 3-point underdogs.

Clemson vs Georgia Prediction & Pick:

Pick: Georgia +3 (-110)

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