- Game: College Football National Championship
- Matchup: Clemson vs. Alabama
- Date: January 9, 2017 at 8:00 PM EST
- Preferred Sportsbook: BetPhoenix
In a rematch of last year's National Championship game, the Alabama Crimson Tide will look to win back-to-back National Championships against the Clemson Tigers. These two have played each other (2) two times, once last year and once in 2008 with the Crimson Tide winning both times by scores of 45-40 and 34-10.
Can Clemson Win The Turnover Game?
Clemson is coming into the title game off a dominating performance against Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl. The Clemson Tigers defense was stout in that game as they were the first team to shut out a Urban Meyer football team in his career.
Clemson is 13-1 overall on the year with their only loss coming against Pittsburgh on November 12, 2016 by 1 point, 43-42. Clemson is 7-7 ATS on the year with 7 games playing OVER and 7 games playing UNDER the posted totals. Clemson is 4-1 in games played on Monday Night. Clemson is 6-0 ATS in their last 6 bowl games. Clemson is 8-1 ATS in games played on a neutral site.
On Offense, Clemson is averaging 39.5 points per game. They will be led on the field by Quarterback Deshaun Watson. In the game against Ohio St, Watson threw 2 INT's but also put up 316 total yards and 3 TD's to make up for the 2 INT's. If they want to beat the Crimson Tide, they will have to be more careful with the ball. Turn the ball over 2 times against Alabama and they will find themselves down 14 points quickly.
On Defense, Clemson is allowing their opposition to score 17.1 points per game. They are only allowing 125.8 rushing yards per game, which is good for 22nd in the nation. In the Ohio State game, they held the 12th ranked Buckeyes rushing offense to 88 yards! They will now get a chance to take on the 11th ranked rushing offense in the Crimson Tide.
‘Bama Appoints New Offensive Coordinator 1 Week From Title Game
Alabama did their part in making the rematch taking out Washington in the Peach Bowl. Now they will take on Clemson for the 2nd time in 2 years. Alabama will be playing for their 5th national championship in 8 years and their 17th national championship since 1925. With the win, Nick Saban would become 1 of 2 head coaches to win 6 titles in the poll era, the other being Bear Bryant. Alabama is undefeated on the year at 14-0. They are 10-4 ATS, with 6 games playing OVER and 8 games playing UNDER the posted totals. Alabama is 4-1 in their last 5 non-conference games. Alabama is 4-1 in their last 5 games on a neutral site.
On Offense, the Crimson Tide is averaging 39.4 points per game but keep in mind that was under the guidance of recently departed Offensive Coordinator Lane Kiffin. Steve Sarkisian will take over as offensive coordinator for the bowl, and going forward. Some may say it was drastic to change offensive coordinator's 1 week prior to the national title game, but some things needed to be addressed and Nick Saban made the decision to make the change. They will be led by true freshman quarterback Jalen Hurts, who was the SEC Offensive Player of the year. Hurts will throwing to wide receivers Ardarius Stewart and Calvin Ridley, who are both physical specimens. Alabama's true strength is their rushing attack. Their rushing attack is averaging 246.7 yards per game and that comes from Hurts, as well as RB's Bo Scarbrough and Damien Harris. If you want to beat this Crimson Tide team, you MUST stop their run!
On Defense, the Crimson Tide is averaging 11.4 points per game. They lead the nation in total defense, rushing defense and defensive touchdowns. The Crimson Tide have scored 17 touchdowns this year that were not from the offensive side of the ball. Many experts feel that this Nick Saban defense is the best defense he has ever put on the field.
Both of these teams have their advantages and disadvantages. Clemson will have the better offense, while Alabama will sport the better defense. This game is really close and our system has it at about a pick um. We feel it will be a very close game, therefore we will take the points and go with CLEMSON +7 over at Bookmaker and BetDSI.
National Championship Picks at a Glance
- Spread / MoneyLine Pick: Clemson +7
- Star Rating: 5 STAR
- Over/Under (Total) Pick: Clemson / Alabama Over 51
- Sportsbook: BetPhoenix
All bowl picks are given and made by Spooky but the previews are written and put together by the Spooky Express team. Check back closer to game day for any possible changes. If you are a numbers person, please utilize the power rankings listed in our College Bowl Picks post.