The College Football Playoff starts with the Grand Daddy of them all as the #1-seeded Michigan Wolverines get to face off against the #4-seeded Alabama Crimson Tide. A surprise to some that the Tide made it to the Playoff, as an undefeated Florida State team is heading to play Georgia in the Orange Bowl instead of having a chance to play for a title, but that is a conversation for another day.
The Michigan Wolverines head to Pasadena, California undefeated and frankly hardly tested this season on the field. They have played 3 ranked opponents this season and handled two of them with ease and defeated arch-rival Ohio State for a third consecutive season.
Not without controversy though, as Head Coach Jim Harbaugh has been through two different suspensions this season. One to start the year for recruiting violations and a second time for the final 3 games for a sign-stealing scandal that resulted in a couple of staff members losing their jobs. However, the Wolverines have been steady as can be on the field. Riding a dominant defense and a g pounding offense, with some big play potential when needed.
The Alabama Crimson Tide are your SEC Champions after upsetting the former #1 ranked and two-time defending national champion Georgia Bulldogs in Atlanta a few weeks ago. The Tide is here despite an early season loss and some quarterback controversy during the season.
Bama lost at home to #3 Texas early this year and then had a couple of lackluster weeks including a horrible win against an even worse South Florida team. They then righted the ship a bit and rolled through most of their SEC schedule including two ranked wins against LSU and Tennessee, both of which they lost to the previous season. However, it took a miracle in Jordan Hare Stadium for them to beat Auburn with a fourth, and a long pass fell into a receiver’s arms in the end zone as time expired.
That is how we got here. Michigan has been in the CFP for the last two seasons and hasn’t won a game yet. They were outscored last year by TCU and the year prior run off the field by eventual champion Georgia.
This game will determine a lot for Michigan football going forward. Right now it looks like they are built to beat Ohio State, with big, strong tough guys. Do they have enough speed to beat Alabama? The Tide has weapons and the size to match… Roll
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With the four playoff teams set for the college football semifinals, futures odds for the four teams have opened, and the Alabama Crimson Tide are favored to win at 185 odds despite being the fourth-ranked team.