Who has the best chance to upset the Alabama Crimson Tide in 2016? Join us for a look at the college football odds.
The New York Yankees of the 1940-50s. The Cleveland Browns of the same era. The Boston Celtics of the 1960s. Will we eventually speak of the Alabama Crimson Tide of the early-2000s on the short list of the very greatest dynasties of their sport?
Four titles in the last seven years don't put Alabama in with those other teams. Almost, but not quite. At least not quite yet. Nick Saban's soldiers could quickly join the list, especially since they're expected to make it five crowns in eight seasons this winter.
Alabama opened as a 6/1 choice at Bookmaker to repeat their 2016 success, those NCAA football odds now providing a slightly shorter return at 11/2. It's nothing new for the Tide to be favored to take home the last trophy after serving in that role many of the past few seasons. Not bad for a team that hasn't settled on its quarterback and returns only half of the official 22 starters on both sides of the ball last season.
If they're going to miss out on a shot at the College Football Playoffs, the Crimson Tide will probably have to lose two games along the way. For many teams, one loss can be their doom, especially if it comes late in the season, but with the tough schedule and reputation 'Bama has, it will take two. Which 2-3 games might relegate the Tide from CFP participant?
Loss To SoCal In Opener Might Just Make 'Em Mad
We have some exact odds to play right now if we think the USC Trojans are the first team to upset Alabama. The historic programs meet in the biggest game of a stacked Week 1 college football betting card, the Tide holding steady at -10 and a juicy +330 return on the Men of Troy to win straight up.
Let's first have a moment of silence for the college football gods giving us such a matchup to whet our whistle and get this season going. Amen.
They've only met seven times, the last in the 1985 Aloha Bowl of all places. It's the third time the Trojans and Crimson Tide have met to get together in a season opener, the other two in 1970-72 when they traded road victories. This one is a neutral-site clash, but Arlington has been very kind to 'Bama. The Tide beat two Big Ten teams here last year, Wisconsin in the season-opener and Michigan State in the Cotton Bowl by a combined 73-17, and a third on this field in 2012 with a 41-14 win over Michigan.
Can Ole Miss Three-Peat?
For the second consecutive season, Alabama and Mississippi meet in Week 3 to kick off their conference campaigns, and for the third consecutive season, the Rebels will be looking to pull off an upset. This year's in Oxford, where Ole Miss posted a 23-17 triumph as a 5½ point underdog on the NCAA football betting card in 2014, the Rebels pulling off an absolute stunner in Tuscaloosa last year, holding on for a 43-27 decision getting 9 points.
If USC takes 'em down in Week 1, I'd bet the farm on 'Bama in Week 3. Ole Miss is probably going to be on a +300 to +350 price, and would be tempting if the Crimson Tide was 2-0.
Will Vols Get 2 Chances To Topple Tide?
What's the best way to beat Alabama? Maybe its as simple as having multiple chances to do so. The Tennessee Volunteers just might have that opportunity in 2016, getting at least one shot when they host the Crimson Tide in the middle of October.
Consider the fact Tennessee is actually a bigger favorite out of the SEC East (-150) than Alabama is in the West (-105). That means even if the college football futures odds favor the Tide to beat the Vols in Week 7, they also favor Tennessee getting a second chance. Trouble is, Alabama has won nine of these matchups in a row, and if the Knoxville bunch is going to beat the Tide once this year, they have to get the job done at Neyland on October 15.
Only after then can they focus on beating Alabama twice.
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