Alabama is odds-on fa­vorite over Clem­son for re­peat na­tional championship win

The State (Sunday) - - Clemson Football - BY GREG HADLEY [email protected]­tate.com Greg Hadley: @Greghadley9

Per­haps un­sur­pris­ingly, the open­ing line for the Col­lege Foot­ball Play­off na­tional championship had Alabama as the clear fa­vorite over Clem­son to re­peat as na­tional cham­pi­ons.

Ac­cord­ing to the Ac­tion Net­work, at least one sports­book had Alabama as a nine-point fa­vorite to start last Satur­day, when it be­came clear that the Crim­son Tide and Tigers would be meet­ing for the fourth con­sec­u­tive sea­son. In Las Ve­gas, the early con­sen­sus had the spread at Alabama by seven.

Since then, how­ever, the line has nar­rowed at most books, to -5.5 points for Alabama, with the low­est at -4.5.

The av­er­age over/un­der for the to­tal score of the game cur­rently stands at 58.5 points, per Ve­gas In­sider.

From a non-bet­ting per­spec­tive, sim­u­la­tions of the game have it in­cred­i­bly close — Fivethir­tyeight’s pre­dic­tion model gives Alabama a 51 per­cent chance of win­ning, Clem­son a 49 per­cent chance. ESPN’S Power Foot­ball In­dex has the split at 51.4 per­cent Alabama, 48.6 per­cent Clem­son.

SPREADS (AS OF JAN. 5)

Bo­vada: -6 Alabama Be­ton­line: -5 Alabama Ve­gas In­sider: -5.5 Alabama

West­gate: -4.5 Alabama Cae­sar’s: -5.5 Alabama Wynn: -4.5 Alabama Uni­bet: -5 Alabama

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