It is logical to prognosticate the reigning college football playoff champion Alabama Crimson Tide and four time playoff participant Clemson squaring off at Levi’s Stadium for the 2019 CFP title. The Tide had one of the more dominating seasons in the history of college football and the Tigers are in the playoff bracket for the fourth consecutive year. CFP Championship Projected Line Report: Alabama -6.5 over Clemson.
With less than a week until the CFP Final Four take the gridiron to determine which two teams will be playing in Santa Clara on January 7th for the college football title there has been some drama for both teams.
In a Christmas eve report “Odds to Win College Football Playoff Championship” I reported that “the favorites to meet at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California, in the College Football postseason title tilt both made announcements today that could well affect the CFP Futures.”
The powers that are at Alabama and Clemson both made announcements on Monday that could or has result in the suspension of a number of players missing not just the College Football Playoff Championship tournament but the next calendar year of eligibility for their schools.
Alabama held a presser that declared three players had violated team rules and policies. Junior offensive lineman Elliot Baker, sophomore offensive lineman Deonte Brown and sophomore tight end Kedrick James did not make the trip to South Florida for the College Football Playoff semifinal. The trio are suspended for the Orange Bowl due to team misconduct.
Clemson coach Dabo Swinney stated in a presser on Monday that three Tigers had failed NCAA-administered drug testing. Defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence, offensive lineman Zach Giella and tight end Braden Galloway tested positive to an NCAA drug test. The three produced a “sliver of ostarine” in the results.
Swinney also said that the trio will have their “B” samples (which will immediately be tested before a suspension is handed down) tested and is hopeful all three will clear. An appeal of the tests is not scheduled to be heard until after the semifinal which means the players will be suspended by the NCAA until the results of the “B” test samples are determined.
The pressure of playing for a championship will likely be felt by both Notre Dame and Oklahoma. Conversely the experience that both ‘Bama and Clemson bring to the table give them an edge.
Notre Dame went 12-0 in the regular season and played in the National Championship back in 2012, but the team or the current player personnel has never appeared in the playoff. The same applies for the Oklahoma Sooners and their roster.
In addition it is rare that a public and highly decorated team like Alabama can have motivation going into the semi-event. Sooners quarterback Kyler Murray took home the Heisman over Alabama signal-caller Tua Tagovailoa and reports are that the Crimson Tide players are using this winner vs runner-up Heisman voting as motivation.
And prognosticating that the Tide will defeat the Sooners handily has a caveat of Tagovailoa still being questionable for the contest with a high-ankle sprain that recently required surgery to assist in his recovery.
That said if Tagovailoa is not declared healthy enough to play Nick Saban and his staff have the experience of backup Jalen Hurts to turn to.
The World’s Largest Race and Sportsbook, Westgate of Las Vegas, updated CFP Championship Projected Line Report: Alabama -6.5 over Clemson.
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