Clemson vs Alabama Odds, Picks and Predictions: Points, Points and More Points

Alabama comes into this game ranked No. 1 in points per game, and our college basketball betting picks see no signs of the Crimson Tide slowing down. Read on to find out which markets to attack in tonight's ACC/SEC showdown.

Nov 28, 2023 • 17:10 ET • 4 min read
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Mark Sears Alabama NCAAB
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The SEC/ACC Challenge is among my favorite in-season college basketball fixtures. The reason is the unique matchups you get, like tonight when Clemson visits #23 Alabama.

The Tigers have been impressive at the start of the season; I was less than impressed with them at the beginning of the year, but a 5-0 start has made me look foolish. With that in mind, this will be the most challenging and first actual road test for Clemson this season. Alabama took a loss earlier this year when it dropped one in a neutral site game to Ohio State. Like much of the story for the Tide this year, it didn't defend well that night. Against the Buckeyes, Alabama allowed 93 points, including 1.13 points per possession. Alabama will enter this matchup off a rebound win on the heels of that Ohio State loss when it took care of Oregon.

What's the best bet in this matchup? Read on as we break down the college basketball odds and offer up our free college basketball picks and predictions for Tuesday, November 28. 

Clemson vs Alabama best odds

Clemson vs Alabama picks and predictions

As I noted at the onset, this Alabama team hasn't defended anyone this season.

If it weren't the best offense in the country, it would have a few more losses because of that. It'll enter this game ranked 61st in KenPom defensive efficiency. That number is pretty decent but needs context: Against the only Two Power Five Opponents on its schedule, it has given up 90 or more points. In addition, it's allowed a point per possession in four of the six games it's played this season. Head Coach Nate Oats knows it needs to be better. Of course, it's impossible to think otherwise.

"Ohio State's tough, they're good," Oats said following the Ohio State loss. "They exposed our weaknesses on defense, we've been saying for four games, six if you count the scrimmage and the exhibition. Our defense isn't where it needs to be."

I need to see Alabama's defense be "where it needs to be" to believe it can get there. I have yet to see it; nothing suggests it'll change anytime soon. We must follow the data here and grab the Over as our best bet. I projected a number closer to 163, so I'm okay with taking the 159.5 number, primarily available everywhere. 

We'll get back to Alabama's defensive struggles in a moment, but let's take a moment to note what they'll do on the offensive side of the ball. I'm expecting it to have a good amount of success. 

Although it has yet to get the attention that Alabama's defense has, Clemson's defense has been well below the standards of what you've grown accustomed to under Head Coach Brad Brownell. Its spot-up and pick-and-roll defense sits in the bottom 10% of college basketball. That's music to the ears of the Tide. If you haven't heard by now, "Oats Ball" is predicated on shots from two places: beyond the perimeter and lay-ups at the rim. Having issues defending ball screens, particularly shooters, isn't the problem you want against them.

On the other side of the ball, it's a safe assertion that almost anyone with a pulse can score on this Alabama team. I hit on why earlier, but its high-throttle offense – three consecutive games that have seen 75+ possessions – has lent itself to poor defense. From a play perspective, the numbers aren't so bad, and that's because Alabama has struggled to stay in front of guards. Clemson doesn't have great lateral speed that has challenged Mark Sears and others defensively, but it should still be able to do enough. It will enter this one with a pick-and-roll offense in the top 10% in efficiency – that's effective enough to score on Alabama.

We can keep this relatively simple. Alabama has the most efficient offense in the country. Yet, on the other side of the ball, it has allowed its two power five opponents to score 90 or more points against it. When a team tells you who they are, I'll believe them. 

My best betOver 160.5 (-110 at FanDuel)

Clemson vs Alabama same-game parlay

Over 160.5 points

Mark Sears 20+ points

We're paring our best bet with an Alabama player to put up points.

We'll take a flier on Mark Sears here. He's the second-best spot-up shooter on this team and the primary scorer on pick-and-roll sets. This, as we noted, has been the defensive struggle for Clemson. 

Learn how to bet a same-game parlay with these helpful tips and strategies.

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Clemson vs Alabama spread and Over/Under analysis

Alabama should win this, but riding the Tide under Oats is always a risk. Often, with them (much more than other teams), it comes down to making open jumpers because of how reliant they are on them and how often they shoot them. There's no coincidence that Alabama has sat in the Top 5 of college basketball in three-pointers attempted every year but one under the coach.

With that said, I do lean towards Clemson here. This Alabama two-point defense has just been so putrid that it's hard for me to back Alabama covering a multiple-possession spread. Clemson has owned this matchup over the past few years with wins in four of the last five, including two straight covers.

We're on the Over tonight as our best bet. Alabama is on a nice streak of overs with three in a row. A large part of that is because of Tide's defensive issues. We're expecting those inefficiencies to be taken advantage of yet again.

Clemson vs Alabama betting trend to know

Clemson has hit the 1H Game Total Over in 22 of their last 32 games (+11.70 Units / 32% ROI). Find more college basketball betting trends for Clemson vs. Alabama.

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Clemson vs Alabama game info

Location: Coleman Coliseum, Tuscaloosa, AL
Date: Tuesday, November 28, 2023
Tip-off: 10:30 p.m. ET
TV: ESPN

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