Sports betting sees more opportunities as we enter the playoffs. Let’s look at where the teams are standing and better determine betting predictions.
Alabama looks for the fifth national championship in 10 seasons under coach Nick Saban. Alabama defeated Clemson in last season’s title game and have won their last 25 overall games. The Huskies are lead by 3rd year head coach Chris Petersen and have had their best season since 1991 when they went unbeaten and won a share of the national championship.
Washington’s Jake Browning is a pro style type of quarterback who is going to beat you passing not running. Alabama’s Jalen Hurts runs nearly as well as he throws. Browning, a sophomore, passed for 3,280 yards and a school-record 42 touchdowns, while Hurts accounted for 34 scores (22 passing, 12 rushing) and is striving to join Oklahoma’s Jamelle Holieway (1985) as the only true freshmen quarterbacks to lead a team to a national title.
Alabama totaled 14 non-offensive touchdowns, matching Southern Mississippi (2011) for the most in FBS since 1996. Alabama’s non-offensive touchdowns break down this way: five interception returns, five fumble returns, three punt returns and one blocked field goal. The Huskies are not as good as Alabama in non-offensive touchdowns. However, they have two superb returners in juniors Josh Ross (one kickoff return score this season, four in his career) and Dante Pettis (two punt return TDs this season, five in his career).
Browning completed 63.2 percent of his passes and Ross totaled 76 receptions for 1,122 yards and 17 touchdowns for the Huskies, who average 44.5 points per game. Sophomore running back Myles Gaskin rushed for 1,339 yards and 10 scores and junior backup Lavon Coleman owns a 7.8 average while rushing for 836 yards and seven touchdowns.
The defense allows 17.2 points per game and features standout junior free safety Budda Baker (65 tackles, two interceptions) and senior outside linebacker Psalm Wooching (team-high six sacks) but remains without two of its top players in senior outside linebacker Joe Mathis (foot) and junior middle linebacker Azeem Victor (leg).
The Washington Huskies have come out of know where to make the playoffs. Why? They have one of the best coaches in the country. When Petersen was at Boise State he made things tough on the bowl selection committee by creating a team that was fun to watch and had legitimate national championship aspirations. He is one of the reasons we now have a playoff system. In this game Chris Petersen will have better talent than he ever did with Boise State.
Alabama is Alabama. The SEC has been seen as a monster conference for the last decade and in large part it is because of Alabama and Saban. Alabama was everyone’s pick before the season started and they rode that top ranking to another playoff appearance.
Alabama is 9-4 against the spread, but this line is high, really high. Nick Saban has failed to cover three of his last four bowl games. Jake Browning, Chris Petersen and, the Huskies are very underrated here. They will find a way to score. Maybe a few special teams big plays like the old Boise State teams. I like Alabama to win because of the advantage they have at the line of scrimmage but, the Huskies will keep it under double digits. Register at HeritageSports.eu for more on the College Football playoffs preview