ACC Coastal Division Betting Preview and Odds: Miami-North Carolina Division Duel to Come Down to October Date in Chapel Hill?

Matt Wiesenfeld

The Atlantic Division of the ACC is unlikely to see a serious battle for the title, with Clemson an overwhelming favorite to win a seventh straight division title despite having to replace key pieces on offense.

The story shapes up rather differently in the Coastal Division. In the Coastal, Miami and North Carolina come in expected to fight it out for the division title. Both teams are led by prolific quarterbacks and will hope to find themselves in the CFP conversation at the business end of the season.

Neither team has to play Clemson this season, so their tussle for the Coastal Division title should come down to their head-to-head matchup, which will take place in Chapel Hill on October 16.

Here’s our look at the ACC Coastal Division, featuring conference and division odds from BetMGM.

ACC Coastal Division Betting Odds

Odds to Win the ACC Championship

  • North Carolina +850
  • Miami +900
  • Virginia Tech +2800
  • Pittsburgh +4000
  • Virginia +6600
  • Georgia Tech +10000
  • Duke +25000

Odds to Win the ACC Coastal Division

  • Miami +130
  • North Carolina +130
  • Virginia Tech +850
  • Pittsburgh +1000
  • Virginia +1200
  • Georgia Tech +3500
  • Duke +8000

ACC Coastal Division Team-by-Team Betting Breakdown

North Carolina Tar Heels

  • Odds to win the ACC: +850
  • Odds to win the ACC Coastal Division: +130

With Trevor Lawrence in the NFL, Tar Heels quarterback Sam Howell is now the top quarterback in the conference. He is also a potential #1 overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft and one of the leading Heisman Trophy favorites.

Can he lead UNC to a division title and keep them in the hunt for the CFP? Last year they were tops in the ACC in yards per game, but running backs Michael Carter and Javonte Williams, both of whom ran for over 1,000 yards last season, are now in the NFL. So are last year’s top two leading receivers in Dyami Brown and Dazz Newsome.

However, coach Mack Brown brought in a talented transfer in former Tennessee running back Ty Chandler, and Howell should put up big numbers through the air regardless of who his targets are. Most importantly, all of the offensive line starters return, so there is a great foundation on which to see if they can take down Clemson, if they get the chance.

The value is definitely there to back North Carolina to win the division and the conference title, though the defense needs to be better if the Tar Heels are to have a shot at taking down Clemson. Their opener at Virginia Tech could be a tricky game, but other than a season-ending trip to rival N.C. State, the rest of the conference schedule sets up favorably.

Miami Hurricanes

  • Odds to win the ACC: +900
  • Odds to win the ACC Coastal Division: +130

The Hurricanes' chances received a huge boost with the return of quarterback D’Eriq King. He might not be an NFL prospect due to his size, but at the college level, he is one of the most exciting playmakers in the game. The Miami offense returns King, its top receiver, top rusher, and four starting offensive linemen. They were 4th in the ACC in scoring.

To return to prominence, the Hurricanes need to be better on defense. They are not at the level needed to pressure elite teams like Clemson. There is enough returning talent, along with some quality transfer additions, to expect improvement though. Manny Diaz the head coach has given Manny Diaz the defensive coordinator some players to work with.

Miami starts the season against Alabama in Atlanta. That will tell us everything we need to know about the team. The schedule is no picnic, which is why they are not as good a play as North Carolina, even though the odds match.

Virginia Tech Hokies

  • Odds to win the ACC: +2800
  • Odds to win the ACC Coastal Division: +850

Last season, the Hokies went 5-6, their second losing record in coach Justin Fuente’s five seasons. That is not a small blemish for a program that had 25 consecutive winning seasons from 1993 to 2017. As a result, Fuente’s job could be in jeopardy if there is another down season.

A lot will rest on quarterback Braxton Burmeister, who has the reins all to himself with Hendon Hooker now at Tennessee. But Virginia Tech is renowned for its defense, and that unit has to make a leap after falling apart last year. Those struggles were a shocking sight given the program’s defensive success over the last couple of decades.

I do not have enough faith in the Hokies’ offense to be productive enough to hang with Miami and North Carolina on that side of the ball. Normally the defense was a given, and their success would be based on how much offense they could find. I am not sure there are any givens on this team right now.

Pittsburgh Panthers

  • Odds to win the ACC: +4000
  • Odds to win the ACC Coastal Division: +1000

Last year was supposed to be a breakthrough year for the Panthers. But after a 3-0 start, their hopes were derailed by a four-game losing streak, which started with consecutive one-point losses to North Carolina State and Boston College. Pitt did recover to win three of four to end the season, but 6-5 is short of what they were hoping for.

A similar record looks likely to be their fate this season, so don’t get fooled by a probable 4-0 start. Visits from Clemson, Miami and North Carolina will likely put the Panthers exact where we expect them to be.

Virginia Cavaliers

  • Odds to win the ACC: +6600
  • Odds to win the ACC Coastal Division: +1200

QB Brennan Armstrong had the tall task of taking over from Bryce Perkins last season, and his increased comfort in his role was a big reason the Cavaliers went 4-1 in their last five to finish 5-5. Armstrong is poised for a strong season in 2021 after accounting for almost 2,700 yards (2,117 passing, 552 rushing) and 23 touchdowns (18 passing, five rushing) last season.

Coach Bronco Mendenhall is going to get the best out of his team, but the Cavaliers have a tough schedule. They play North Carolina and Miami on the road, host Notre Dame and also travel to BYU. That looks like four guaranteed losses to me. They may pull an upset along the way, but don’t look for another surprise run to the ACC title game this season.

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

  • Odds to win the ACC: +10000
  • Odds to win the ACC Coastal Division: +3500

When they opened last season with a win at Florida State, it looked like maybe the Yellow Jackets were on their way back to being respectable. They only won twice the rest of the way, and even though the offense had its struggles, the defense was just as bad. The transition away from the triple option was a viable excuse on offense, but what is the excuse for the Yellow Jackets being the worst defensive teams in the ACC? Head coach Geoff Collins built a reputation for defensive success at previous stops, so improvement should occur.

The Yellow Jackets have a good foundation on offense, led by quarterback Jeff Sims. Sims will be worth watching even if the team isn’t winning. If the defense is better, Georgia Tech will cause some trouble. If they don’t, it will be another long season.

Duke Blue Devils

  • Odds to win the ACC: +25000
  • Odds to win the ACC Coastal Division: +8000

Duke is pushing the reset button at quarterback after Clemson transfer Chase Brice struggled last season and then transferred to Appalachian State. The new starter is senior Gunnar Holmberg, who will be tasked with helping the Blue Devils push for a bowl game.

They will improve upon last season’s two wins, but it is difficult to see where conference wins will come from. Georgia Tech on October 9 looks like their best chance.

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