By Dan Kilbridge | | 5 mins
CFP Odds: Alabama-Cincinnati & Michigan-Georgia Opening Lines
The stage is set and the field is ready with Alabama, Michigan, Georgia and Cincinnati getting in to the 2021 College Football Playoff after another spectacular championship Saturday.
Now the Dec. 31 semifinal games are established with Alabama playing Cincinnati and Michigan taking on Georgia. Alabama opened as a -13.5 favorite over Cincinnati at sportsbooks and betting apps, with the total for that semifinal game set at 59.
Georgia is a -7 favorite over Michigan in the other semifinal game, with the Bulldogs slipping out of the No. 1 spot following their loss to Alabama in the SEC Championship. That total is set at 43.5. The title game is Jan. 10, 2022.
2021 National Championship Odds
With its dominant showing over Georgia in Atlanta, the Tide are once again favorites in the College Football Playoff winner odds for the first time since the early months of the season. Alabama is currently +120 to win the title and does have a favorable matchup in the opening semifinal, potentially taking on Michigan or getting a rematch with Georgia in the national championship game.
Georgia is still right there with favorable title odds at +140 at betting sites despite coming off its first loss of the season, falling to No. 3 in the rankings. The Bulldogs are a -305 moneyline favorite in opening college football odds for the semifinal matchup with Michigan, which just turned in a dominant win over Iowa in the Big Ten title game.
The Wolverines are still a relative longshot to win it all with national championship odds of +750. Cincinnati, meanwhile, becomes the first non-Power 5 team to make the CFP and draws Alabama in the first round. The Bearcats are a +410 moneyline underdog for the game against the Tide, and their national title odds are still very long at +1500 in college football futures.
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Meet The College Football Playoff Semifinalists
The Tide turned on the jets when it mattered most and dominated the Bulldogs in a 41-24 upset win in the SEC title game. That came on the heels of a comeback win over Auburn in four overtimes as the Tide now have all the momentum with quarterback Bryce Young – Heisman Trophy betting favorite – at the helm. Alabama was able to overcome its lone loss of the year at Texas A&M and suddenly looks very much the part of national championship favorite, with Saban and the Tide going for their third national championship in the past five years. They are favored – just slightly – over SEC rival Georgia across all operators, including at BetMGM, where you can use the BetMGM bonus code to nab a $1,000 risk-free first bet just in time for bowl season.
The Bulldogs looked unstoppable all season long. Then the nation’s No. 1-ranked defense came up against Alabama’s seventh-ranked offense and fell apart for the first time. Georgia’s resume had been flawless up to that point without so much as a close call in SEC play. The only time the Bulldogs were really threatened early on came in a 10-3 season-opening win over Clemson. That gave Georgia wiggle room with the committee, and the Bulldogs are still right in the mix.
But Georgia fans must be alarmed seeing Alabama move the ball up and down the field on that vaunted defense all night – Georgia is not a team built to win from behind, and the offense needs to step it up in the coming semifinal against Michigan.
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The Wolverines are in the CFP for the first time after a blowout win over Iowa in the Big Ten title game in Indianapolis. Michigan got to Indy thanks to a massive upset win over Ohio State in the final week of the regular season, and the Wolverines look better than they ever have under Jim Harbaugh. An upset loss at Michigan State is the only scratch on the resume, but otherwise the Wolverines took care of business in the Big Ten and now has a chance to pull off another big upset against the Bulldogs.
The stars finally aligned for the unbeaten Bearcats, who finally got over the hump and became the first Group of 5 school to get the CFP nod. Cincinnati got over the last leg of the journey with a strong win over Houston in the AAC title game, and now Luke Fickell and the Bearcats have a chance to truly shock the world against Alabama. While there were some ugly, close wins early on, Cincinnati has turned it on lately with plenty of momentum entering the CFP. If you want to take a flier on the Bearcats, you can take advantage a Caesars Sportsbook promo code that matches your first bet with site credit up to $1,001 – win or lose.
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Other New Year's 6 Matchups & Odds
Remaining New Year’s Six games were announced Sunday, with matchups set for the Peach Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Rose Bowl and Sugar Bowl.
PEACH BOWl: Michigan State and Pittsburgh kick things off Dec. 30 in the Peach Bowl in Atlanta, with former Michigan State defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi’s Panthers taking on the old program. Pittsburgh’s elite passing attack GOES against Michigan State’s struggling secondary.
FIESTA BOWL: On New Year’s Day, Notre Dame and Oklahoma State are set to meet in the Fiesta Bowl in Glendale, Arizona. The Irish weren’t able to sneak into the playoff, but they get a good matchup against a Cowboys team coming off a disappointing loss in the Big 12 title game against Baylor.
ROSE BOWL: Ohio State looks to bounce back from its loss to Michigan with a Rose Bowl matchup against Utah. The Buckeyes will be favored against the Pac-12 champs in what should be an exciting showdown in Pasadena.
SUGAR BOWL: Big 12-champion Baylor and 10-2 Ole Miss take it home in the night cap at the Sugar Bowl, with Rebels Heisman candidate quarterback Matt Corral looking to finish strong against a dangerous Bears team in New Orleans.
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