NOTRE DAME over NC State by 1
Could this turn out to be The Mother Of All Letdowns for the Fighting Irish? After making highly-touted USC quarterback Sam Darnold look more like Tom Arnold – and shutting down the Trojans’ run game (76 yards) in a 49-14 rout – Notre Dame rose to the AP’s No. 9 spot while effectively slamming the door on USC’s chances of reaching the CFB Playoffs. The problem for the Dame today is a 3-9 ATS failure after beating Southern Cal, including 0-6 ATS following a win of more than 8 points (not to mention a 2-8 ATS mark in the second of three straight home games). Meanwhile, NC State has moved up the rankings as quietly as any team in recent memory, currently No. 14 in the AP Top 25, and this is not a team Brian Kelly’s bunch can go to sleep on. State owns a decent enough 5-2 ATS record as a non-conference road dog of fewer than 14 points but it’s the Pack’s extra week of prep time that bodes well for the visitors here: head coach Dave Doeren’s teams are 8-3 SU and 9-2 ATS with rest, including 7-0 ATS against opponents off a win. Sure, NC State has a huge battle with Clemson on deck but that’s never been a problem in the past as the Wolfpack have cashed in four straight contests before tangling with the Tigers. Notre Dame’s current 5-0 SUATS roll, coupled with its romp over USC, will make it tough for some to pull the trigger with the underdogs. Not us. We see a value-packed contest where NC State can take it to the wire… especially with Wolfpack QB Ryan Finley attempting 313 passes this year – without an interception. Ahh-ooh!