On Monday, January 7th, College Football will be in the spotlight as the Clemson Tigers take on the Alabama Crimson Tide in the National Championship Game. This is the 3rd time in 4 years that these two teams will meet for the national title.
Many pundits are already hailing “Clemson vs Alabama IV” as the best football game since the 2016-17 national title game. Will the Tigers break Alabama’s stranglehold on college football or will the Crimson Tide continue their dynasty? Kickoff inside Levi’s Stadium is at 8 PM ET.
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The following odds are courtesy of live odds feed:
Alabama Crimson Tide
Current S/U record
2018 ATS Home
2018 ATS Away
2018 O/U Home
2018 O/U Away
Clemson vs Alabama CFP Championship Game Preview
Monday’s championship game will mark the 19th time these two teams have played against each other.
Alabama leads the series with a 14-4 record. The Crimson Tide have won 14 of the last 15 head-to-head matchups including last year’s Sugar Bowl. However, Clemson and Alabama are tied in national title games against each other at 1 win apiece.
Clemson (14-0) comes into this game with one of the best defenses in college football and a ton of confidence. Last weekend they destroyed the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in what was supposed to be a more competitive game.
Clemson’s defense held Notre Dame to just 3 points and wreaked havoc on the Fighting Irish offense all game long. Will the Tigers’ defense be as ferocious against Alabama in the national title game as they were in the Cotton Bowl?
Alabama (14-0) has been the top team in college football all year long. They were favored in every game this season and never fell from the #1 ranking in any poll.
The Crimson Tide flexed their muscles against a very talented Oklahoma team last weekend and showed why they are still the team to beat in college football. Can Alabama continue rolling in the playoffs or will they lose to Clemson for the 2nd time in four years?
Depending on which online sportsbook you bet at, the spread ranged from -6 to -7 points for Alabama. Since then, the spread has come down to 5.0 points in favor of Alabama at most online betting sites.
The Over/Under opened at 61 points with most college football sportsbooks. Currently, the O/U is at 59.5 total points at the majority of football betting sites.
Free CFP Title Game Pick and Game Prediction: Clemson +5.0
Since the beginning of the 2018 NCAAF season, we were destined to see these two teams play in the national title game. Both Alabama and Clemson have ruled the top of the charts all year long. However, there has been one slight difference between them in my opinion.
Later in the season, Alabama appeared more vulnerable, and Clemson seemed to get stronger. For example, Alabama only beat Georgia by 7 and Oklahoma by 11. Clemson defeated Pitt by 32 and Notre Dame by 27 in their conference title game and the Cotton Bowl.
I think this bodes well for Clemson as they have shown an improvement throughout the year, and that starts with their QB play. Trevor Lawrence has stepped it up a level, which was evident in his stellar performance against Notre Dame where he threw for 327 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Alabama’s defense is slightly better than Notre Dame, but the Crimson Tide just gave up 308 yards to Kyler Murray in the air and 109 yards to Murray on the ground. I believe this favors Lawrence to have a solid game. Alabama gave up 34 points to OK, who only averages a point more per game than Clemson.
The big difference between Oklahoma and Clemson is that the Tigers have a defense that rivals Alabama. Clemson only allows 13.7 ppg compared to Alabama’s 14.8 ppg. Furthermore, the Tigers allow just 276.7 total ypg compared to Alabama at 295.4 ypg.
Clemson allows just 92.9 ypg on the ground and Alabama allows 117 rushing ypg. The Crimson Tide do allow less yards in the air at 178.4 ypg to Clemson’s 183.8 ypg. However, that is very miniscule and won’t be a factor in this contest.
Other than Clemson, Alabama has the best d-line in the country. So, this game is going to come down to whichever d-line can win the war in the trenches, control the game, stop the run and get pressure on the QB with just 4 linemen.
Although I give the QB edge to Tua Tagovailoa, I believe the Clemson’s defensive line is better and they will outplay Alabama’s d-line. Lawrence might start off slow against the Crimson Tide defense, but he will have his backfield mate in RB Etienne who has 1,572 rushing yards and 22 rushing TDs on the year.
Additionally, Etienne is solid out of the backfield catching the ball. Both teams have great groups of receivers, which I don’t see an advantage for either school.
I really like what Clemson is doing and I believe they will cover this spread and win the game. However, for the sake of betting, I’m going with Clemson and the +5.0 points.
The Tigers were 5-1 ATS away from home, while Alabama was 3-2. The Tigers are 6-1 SU in their last 7 neutral field games and Alabama is 1-2 ATS this year at neutral sites.
The Crimson Tide are 4-3 ATS when playing teams with winning records and Clemson is 6-3 ATS. One more stat to throw at you, in their recent bowl games, Alabama is 2-3 ATS and Clemson is 3-1 ATS.
Tua might be able to outplay Lawrence, but I think Clemson will fare better on the ground than Alabama. I love what that Clemson defense can do and I think that’s what keeps this team in the game. I also think that’s what gives the Tigers their best chance at winning.
Although I believe they will win and their moneyline of +200 has value, the safe bet is with Clemson getting 5.0 points (-107).
As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at GamblingSites.org to become the self-professed "King of the Blog" in his first year with the site. ...
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