National Championship Odds Look Good for Dawgs Over Tide

nick chubb

Jason Lake

Thursday, January 4, 2018 7:31 PM UTC

Thursday, Jan. 4, 2018 7:31 PM UTC

Georgia will be the underdog to the Alabama Crimson Tide on Monday night in Atlanta, but the Bulldogs could win the national championship game straight-up.

Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Georgia Bulldogs

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Free NCAAF Pick: Georgia +5Best Line Offered: Bovada

It’s time to make a decision. We took an early look at Monday’s national championship game (8 p.m. ET, ESPN) for #Betting101, and it’s going to be a fairly tough choice between the No. 4 Alabama Crimson Tide and the No. 3 Georgia Bulldogs. These were the teams the sharps liked in the College Football Playoff semifinals. Who do they have in their college football picks for the title game?

It looks like Alabama. The Tide opened as 4.5-point favorites on our NCAAF odds board, but some of the books on the Las Vegas Strip got in earlier than that with Alabama as low as -3.5. The early money appears to have been on the favorites, but now that we’re getting closer to kickoff, the tables have turned. Georgia is back down to +3.5 at most outlets as of this writing, although you still can get them at +5 if you shop around.

Low Tide

Anything above +3 might be a gift for Georgia supporters. FiveThirtyEight projects Alabama to win the title 56 percent of the time, which translates to something like -2 according to the estimated probabilities at Wizard of Odds. ESPN’s Football Power Index has the Tide at 57.5 percent, or closer to -2.5.

The Bulldogs also got something of a gift Wednesday morning when they learned that Alabama LB Anfernee Jennings would have to sit out the game. Jennings hurt his knee during the Sugar Bowl win over Clemson, and that leaves the Tide without three of their linebackers; Shaun Dion Hamilton (knee) and Dylan Moses (foot and/or knee) also are out.

There was a time when this would be an easy bet on Georgia. However, the betting public seems happier to fade Alabama than follow these days. Maybe some of that same “Evil Empire” aura that has turned NFL fans against the New England Patriots has rubbed off on Nick Saban’s crew. The public money charts for 2017 have Georgia near the top and ‘Bama barely cracking the Top 25, even with all that Sugar Bowl money factored in.

We’re still taking the Bulldogs at the best price on the board, but only for a small wager under the circumstances.

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