VRBO Citrus Bowl Betting Preview: Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Michigan Wolverines – Jan. 1, 2020

by Ayden Fahlstrom | January 1, 2020 |

The 2020 Citrus Bowl will take place on Wednesday, January 1, 2020, and will feature the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Michigan Wolverines!

The Citrus Bowl is being played at the Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Florida with the kickoff scheduled to take place at 1:00 PM ET on ABC.

GTBets has set the point spread for this game at Alabama Crimson Tide -7 and have set the total for the over/under plays at 58.5 points.

Citrus Bowl History

The 74th Citrus Bowl will be played this year between schools from the SEC and the BIG-10.  The Michigan Wolverines will represent the BIG TEN while the Alabama Crimson Tide will represent the SEC.   

The following are the previous VRBO Citrus Bowl game history:

  • 1 1946 January 1, 1947 Catawba 31 Maryville 6
  • 2 1947 January 1, 1948 Catawba 7 Marshall 0
  • 3 1948 January 1, 1949 Murray State 21 Sul Ross State 21
  • 4 1949 January 2, 1950 Saint Vincent 7 Emory & Henry 6
  • 5 1950 January 1, 1951 Morris Harvey 35 Emory & Henry 14
  • 6 1951 January 1, 1952 Stetson 35 Arkansas State 20
  • 7 1952 January 1, 1953 East Texas State 33 Tennessee Tech 0
  • 8 1953 January 1, 1954 Arkansas State 7 East Texas State 7
  • 9 1954 January 1, 1955 Omaha 7 Eastern Kentucky 6
  • 10 1955 January 2, 1956 Juniata 6 Missouri Valley 6
  • 11 1956 January 1, 1957 West Texas State 20 Mississippi Southern 13
  • 12 1957 January 1, 1958 East Texas State 10 Mississippi Southern 9
  • 13 1958 December 27, 1958 East Texas State 26 Missouri Valley 7
  • 14 1959 January 1, 1960 Middle Tennessee 21 Presbyterian 12
  • 15 1960 December 30, 1960 The Citadel 27 Tennessee Tech 0
  • 16 1961 December 29, 1961 Lamar 21 Middle Tennessee 14
  • 17 1962 December 22, 1962 Houston 49 Miami (OH) 21
  • 18 1963 December 28, 1963 Western Kentucky 27 Coast Guard 0
  • 19 1964 December 12, 1964 East Carolina 14 Massachusetts 13
  • 20 1965 December 11, 1965 East Carolina 31 Maine 0
  • 21 1966 December 10, 1966 Morgan State 14 West Chester 6
  • 22 1967 December 16, 1967 Tennessee–Martin 25 West Chester 8
  • 23 1968 December 27, 1968 Richmond 49 #15 Ohio 42
  • 24 1969 December 26, 1969 #20 Toledo 56 Davidson 33
  • 25 1970 December 28, 1970 #15 Toledo 40 William & Mary 12
  • 26 1971 December 28, 1971 #14 Toledo 28 Richmond 3
  • 27 1972 December 29, 1972 Tampa 21 Kent State 18
  • 28 1973 December 22, 1973 #15 Miami (OH) 16 Florida 7
  • 29 1974 December 21, 1974 #15 Miami (OH) 21 Georgia 10
  • 30 1975 December 20, 1975 #12 Miami (OH) 20 South Carolina 7
  • 31 1976 December 18, 1976 #14 Oklahoma State 49 BYU 21
  • 32 1977 December 23, 1977 #19 Florida State 40 Texas Tech 17
  • 33 1978 December 23, 1978 NC State 30 Pittsburgh 17
  • 34 1979 December 22, 1979 LSU 34 Wake Forest 10
  • 35 1980 December 20, 1980 Florida 35 Maryland 20
  • 36 1981 December 19, 1981 Missouri 19 #18 Southern Miss 17
  • 37 1982 December 18, 1982 #18 Auburn 33 Boston College 26
  • 38 1983 December 17, 1983 Tennessee 30 #16 Maryland 23
  • 39 1984 December 22, 1984 Georgia 17 #15 Florida State 17
  • 40 1985 December 28, 1985 #17 Ohio State 10 #9 BYU 7
  • 41 1986 January 1, 1987 #10 Auburn 16 USC 7
  • 42 1987 January 1, 1988 #14 Clemson 35 #20 Penn State 10
  • 43 1988 January 2, 1989 #9 Clemson 13 #10 Oklahoma 6
  • 44 1989 January 1, 1990 #11 Illinois 31 #16 Virginia 21
  • 45 1990 January 1, 1991 #2 Georgia Tech 45 #19 Nebraska 21
  • 46 1991 January 1, 1992 #14 California 37 #13 Clemson 13
  • 47 1992 January 1, 1993 #8 Georgia 21 #15 Ohio State 14
  • 48 1993 January 1, 1994 #13 Penn State 31 #6 Tennessee 13
  • 49 1994 January 2, 1995 #6 Alabama 24 #13 Ohio State 17
  • 50 1995 January 1, 1996 #3 Tennessee 20 #4 Ohio State 14
  • 51 1996 January 1, 1997 #9 Tennessee 48 #11 Northwestern 28
  • 52 1997 January 1, 1998 #6 Florida 21 #11 Penn State 6
  • 53 1998 January 1, 1999 #15 Michigan 45 #11 Arkansas 31
  • 54 1999 January 1, 2000 #9 Michigan State 37 #10 Florida 34
  • 55 2000 January 1, 2001 #17 Michigan 31 #20 Auburn 28
  • 56 2001 January 1, 2002 #8 Tennessee 45 #17 Michigan 17
  • 57 2002 January 1, 2003 #19 Auburn 13 #10 Penn State 9
  • 58 2003 January 1, 2004 #11 Georgia 34 #12 Purdue 27
  • 59 2004 January 1, 2005 #11 Iowa 30 #12 LSU 25
  • 60 2005 January 2, 2006 #20 Wisconsin 24 #7 Auburn 10
  • 61 2006 January 1, 2007 #5 Wisconsin 17 #13 Arkansas 14
  • 62 2007 January 1, 2008 Michigan 41 #12 Florida 35
  • 63 2008 January 1, 2009 #15 Georgia 24 #18 Michigan State 12
  • 64 2009 January 1, 2010 #11 Penn State 19 #15 LSU 17
  • 65 2010 January 1, 2011 #16 Alabama 49 #9 Michigan State 7
  • 66 2011 January 2, 2012 #9 South Carolina 30 #20 Nebraska 13
  • 67 2012 January 1, 2013 #6 Georgia 45 #23 Nebraska 31
  • 68 2013 January 1, 2014 #9 South Carolina 34 #19 Wisconsin 24
  • 69 2014 January 1, 2015 #16 Missouri 33 #25 Minnesota 17
  • 70 2015 January 1, 2016 #14 Michigan 41 #19 Florida 7
  • 71 2016 December 31, 2016 #20 LSU 29 #13 Louisville 9
  • 72 2017 January 1, 2018 #14 Notre Dame 21 #17 LSU 17
  • 73 2018 January 1, 2019 #16 Kentucky 27 #13 Penn St 24

Previous Matchups

This will be the 5th time that the Alabama Crimson Tide and Michigan Wolverines have faced each other. In the previous 4 matchups, each team has won two games and lost two games.  The last time these two played was in 2012 when the Crimson Tide won 41-14. It should be noted that the other 3 games between these two teams were all bowl games. 

Alabama Crimson Tide Preview

The Crimson Tide are led offensively by Mac Jones.  Jones took over the starting duties in the Mississippi State game when Tua Tagovailoa was injured and subsequently required season-ending surgery.  

Jones has completed 70% of his passes for 1,176 yards and 11 touchdowns.  In his last start, a 45-41 loss to Auburn, Jones was terrific. He threw for 335 yards and four touchdowns.  He was picked off twice and sacked once in that game. 

Junior running back Najee Harris leads the Tide in rushing.  He has carried the ball 185 times for 1,088 yards and 11 touchdowns.  

He is averaging 5.9 yards per carry.  Harris was superb in the Auburn game, rushing 27 times for 146 yards and a touchdown.  

Junior Brian Robinson Jr. has also contributed to the rushing attack.  He has carried 93 times for 425 yards and five touchdowns. He is averaging 4.6 yards per carry.

Junior wide receiver DeVonta Smith was among the best receivers in the country.  He caught 65 passes for 1,200 yards and 13 touchdowns.  

His yardage total is good for 10th in the nation, and he is tied for sixth in touchdowns.  Smith is averaging 18.5 yards per reception.  

Junior Jerry Jeudy could very well top the 1,000-yard plateau in this game.  He has caught 71 passes for 959 yards and nine touchdowns. He is averaging 13.5 yards per catch.  

Junior Henry Ruggs III is also a crucial player in the passing game.  He has caught 38 passes for 719 yards and seven touchdowns, averaging 18.9 yards per reception.  The Crimson Tide are averaging 513.3 yards and 48.3 points per game. 

Michigan Wolverines

The Wolverines’ offense is led by quarterback Shea Patterson.  Patterson has completed 57.3% of his passes for 2,828 yards and 22 touchdowns.  

He was intercepted six times and sacked 22 times.  Patterson’s signature performance came on November 16th against Michigan State.  He was 24/33 for 384 yards and four touchdowns. 

The majority of the rushing duties have been split between two players.  Freshman Zach Charbonnet has carried the ball 136 times for 642 yards and 11 touchdowns.  He averages 4.7 yards per carry. His best performance came against Illinois when he had 16 carries for 116 yards and a touchdown.  

Sophomore Hassan Haskins has carried the ball 103 times for 561 yards and four touchdowns.  He averages 5.4 yards per carry. Haskins’ signature performance came against Notre Dame on October 26 when he rushed 20 times for 149 yards. 

Patterson spreads the ball around in the passing game.  The Wolverines have six players with at least 230 yards receiving.  The group is led by junior Nico Collins.  

Collins has caught 33 passes for 681 yards and seven touchdowns.  His average of 20.6 yards per catch is ninth in the nation.  

Sophomore Ronnie Bell has caught 43 passes for 694 yards and a touchdown.  Michigan averages 402.1 yards and 33.2 points per game.

Handicapping Breakdown

This game is another one of those bowl games that is very difficult to handicap.  Our gut feeling is telling us to get on board with Alabama but that is just a lean.  

Its hard to imagine that after playing for the National Championship year after year, that Nick Saban can get these kids up to play in the lowly Citrus Bowl.  We will use the time between now and game time to determine if there is a motivational issue.  

We are leaning to Alabama but it isn’t an official play.  Check back closer to game time for our final official play!

Update: We are going to play Alabama as a Regular Play. A lot of people are saying they won't be motivated however we think the opposite. We think they will actually come in looking to use some of their younger players to look to the future. Look for Alabama to run up the score and win by at least 7 +. Lay the 7 and roll with Alabama as a Regular Play.

Regular Play: Alabama Crimson Tide -7

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