The Terrapins are playing the Tigers with a converted linebacker at quarterback. It would be hard enough for a legitimate backup to win on the road against the defending ACC champs. See if you concur with our college football picks play on the game.

That’s why the college football odds makers at Bovada have them listed as a 31-point underdog

The Terrapins can win because…

Tajh BoydThey have won at Clemson before when they were expected to get blown out. In the past decade under former coach Ralph Friedgen, the Terrapins knocked off the Tigers despite being thoroughly outclassed in terms of raw talent. On paper, some of those Maryland teams in the middle of the past decade had no business competing with Clemson's stable of NFL-level skill people on the edges. Yet, the Terps won, as was the case in 2008, when they prevailed by a 20-17 score, and in 2006, when they also won in Clemson, that time by a score of 13-12. Some strange voodoo seems to enfold the Terps when they play the Tigers. Maryland played an unbeaten Clemson team last year and was expected to get pummeled. The Terps gained a 35-17 lead early in the third quarter, however. They wound up losing by a 56-45 score, but they gave Clemson a serious run, far more than the pundits and talking heads were anticipating before kickoff.

Yes, the outlook seems hopeless for Maryland against Clemson on the road, but this reality has been ignored before by the Terrapins. They get under Clemson's skin more than they do other ACC teams.

The Tigers can win because… 

They're the better team. The Tigers have flourished on offense under the guidance of coordinator Chad Morris, who has enabled quarterback Tajh Boyd, running back Andre Ellington, and a group of fleet-footed flankers to play to their full potential. Clemson's spread passing concepts and its emphasis on tempo have enabled the Tigers to make considerable advances on the offensive side of the ball. This is why Clemson, a resource-rich program that is crazy about football, has been able to stop underachieving. The Tigers won the ACC last year and reached the Orange Bowl for the first time in 30 years. They won the ACC for the first time since 1991, a two-decade drought. This team is not the team that lost to Maryland at home in 2006 and 2008. These are different kinds of Tigers who not only strike quickly, but don't beat themselves with turnovers anymore. Maryland is playing with a fifth-string quarterback. The Terrapins just won't be able to stand in the arena for a particularly long period of time. 

Outlook & Betting Prediction: 

You don't have to make things too complicated in this game. Clemson is better to begin with. It is playing at home. Maryland has a converted linebacker playing quarterback as the fifth-string player on the depth chart. 

Picks: Clemson -31