The 2021 NCAA football playoffs kick off this weekend, and a champion will soon emerge.
According to the latest college football odds, Alabama (-13.5) and Georgia (-7.5) enter this week as prohibitive favorites. Both teams are expected to advance to the NCAA football national championship.
Will the favorites prevail, or will a wild season deliver more twists and turns?
Here are bets to consider.
Alabama (-13.5) vs. Cincinnati
- Date: Friday, December 31st
- Time: 3:30 P.M. EST on ESPN
- Venue: AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX
- Participants: Cincinnati and Alabama
Led by Heisman winner Bryce Young, Alabama looks poised to win another NCAA football championship. Alabama has a blistering offensive attack that’s scored 71 touchdowns in 13 games this year. They average 42.5 points per game (ranked fourth).
Undefeated Cincinnati enters with a top-four scoring defense that has allowed slightly over 16 points per game. The Wildcats have held opponents to 20 points or fewer in 10 of their 13 games.
Cincinnati also has a top-10 scoring offense that averages 38.8 points per game as they cruised through the American conference.
However, it is worth noting that Cincinnati faced just two ranked teams all season and has not faced a group of Alabama’s caliber.
After watching Alabama dismantle Georgia’s top-ranked defense in the SEC championship, betting against the Crimson Tide looks like a dicey proposition.
This Alabama team is loaded with talent and has one of the greatest college football coaches of all time. While 13.5 is a significant number, I believe Alabama can cover against Cincinnati.
Alabama is no stranger to NCAAF National Championship games. This year may be no different.
Michigan (+7.5) vs. Georgia
- Date: Friday, December 31st
- Time: 7:30 P.M. EST on ESPN
- Venue: Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, FL
- Participants: Michigan and Georgia
Michigan finally beat Ohio State for the first time in a decade. They followed up that monumental win with a 42-3 thrashing of Iowa in the Big Ten title game. The Wolverines look like a team that could beat anyone in the country.
Michigan has the 12th-ranked scoring offense, averaging 37.7 points per game. The running game has been their catalyst all season. Michigan averages 224 rushing yards per game.
With an impressive 5.32 average yards per rush, Michigan will try to establish the run early and often.
Georgia’s defensive prowess is well documented. Even after surrendering 41 to Alabama, the Bulldogs defense has allowed just 9.54 points per game (1st). The run defense has been exceptional, allowing 81.7 yards per game and just three rushing touchdowns all season.
Both teams have impressive resumes with top-five ranked scoring defenses, and top-12 ranked scoring offenses. I believe Michigan can hang around in this game. Ultimately, a 7.5-point margin feels a bit too high for these well-matched squads.
NCAA Football National Championship Odds
- Date: Monday, January 10th
- Time: 8:00 P.M. EST on ESPN
- Venue: Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, IN
- Participants: TBD
Here are the latest odds for the NCAA Football National Championship 2021:
Georgia + 135
Alabama at +120 appears to have decent value as they will likely be favored in the title game should they advance past Cincinnati.
A bet on Michigan at +750 is also an intriguing option to consider. The Wolverines have two of the best pass rushers in Aidan Hutchinson and David Ojabo, along with a dominant running game that helps them control the clock.
College Football Playoffs
With the NCAA football national championship right around the corner, the playoffs should provide some final thrills to cap off an exciting college football season.
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