It’s the first SEC Showdown in the National Championship for College Football in nearly six years, and yours truly has to jump in with some prop betting selections via Bovada sportsbook. The big question mark is whether Georgia can run on Alabama. If they can’t, this one might go to the Tide.
Sony Michel O/U 72 ½ Rushing Yards
Sony Michel absolutely crushed Oklahoma in the double-overtime thriller in the Rose Bowl last week, but this week his prospects of racking up 181 yards on 11 carries is not that great.
Of course, if he breaks off another 75-yard run, we’re pretty toast in this one, but the Bama defense is not going to let this rushing attack get going. The battle in the trenches is going to be an interesting one, but the Tide rushing defense is for real. We see it every year.
Before the Rose Bowl, Michel was also playing a secondary role to Nick Chubb. In the last six games of the regular season during the meat of the conference schedule, Chubb out-carried Michel 100 to 72.
Assuming Alabama is doing their thing on defense, there’s a chance that neither one of these running backs gets off, let alone the one who is receiving less touches. Plus, if Alabama jumps out to a big lead sometime before halftime, the Bulldogs might be forced to move away from the run game some to try and play catch up.
There are a lot of ifs in this matchup obviously, but if Alabama got here by giving up just 2.8 yards per carry and 94.1 rushing yards per game, I doubt Georgia is going to be able to get two running backs going against this defense.Free National Championship Pick: UNDER 72 ½
Lines Available at Bovada (-140)
Team To Score First
There are obviously some sharps on Alabama to score first in this one because as I was writing this sentence, the -120 betting odds I was getting on the Tide to score first turned into -135.
While I’m sure you can find varying odds for that prop at almost every sportsbook or bookie you get action from, the fact of the matter is because of the good Bama defense, their odds of scoring first in this one go up significantly.
Other than Auburn, the Bulldogs have not faced a team like the Tide this season, and they are going to get punched in the mouth the first time they're on offense.
Not only is the Bama defense strong against the run, but also they held quarterbacks to the second-worst quarterback rating of any FBS team at 98.9, and they ranked number one in yards per pass attempt allowed at only 5.5.
If these two teams are hyped up as much as they should be for this game, the defenses might be the story at least early in the game. That means I’m leaning towards the better defense and hoping that the Alabama offense can get on the board first.Free National Championship Pick: Alabama
Lines Available at Bovada (-135)