2019 – 2020 College Football Betting – CFP Matchups and Odds

Written by:
Phil Simon
Published on:

College football’s version of the final four is set and the committee nailed it this year. It actually wasn’t a tough decision with the last three undefeated teams making an appearance along with the one-loss Big 12 champions. And we also have a newbie with SEC champ LSU making its first CFP visit after knocking out both Alabama and Georgia. The Tigers earned the No. 1 seed and will play Oklahoma in one semifinal. The other semifinal pits undefeated defending champion Clemson against 13-0 Big Ten champ Ohio State.

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CFP Semifinal – Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl

No. 1 LSU Tigers vs. No. 4 Oklahoma Sooners

Date and Time: Saturday, December 28, 2019, 4 p.m. ET

Location: Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta, GA

Opening College Football Odds: LSU -10, O/U 77

LSU vs. Oklahoma TV Coverage: ESPN

LSU vs. Oklahoma Preview

The Sooners have been here three times previously and never made it past the semis. They are a big underdog to extend that streak against the powerful Tigers. LSU hit the board as a 10-point favorite in its first CFP game and the line was quickly wagered to -13 with a lot of public support. With their fast-break offense the Tigers rolled through five top-10 teams during the year, including victories over Auburn and Alabama in consecutive games, and a dismantling of Georgia in the SEC Championship.

With Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow, yes I said it, leading the way the Tigers lead the nation with 554.5 yards per game and rank third with 47.8 points per game. Burrow has just 97 incomplete passes in 439 attempts for 4,715 yards and 48 touchdowns, setting numerous SEC records along the way. There’s more to the offense than just Burrow, however. Clyde Edwards-Helaire rushed for 1,290 yards and 16 touchdowns and the pass catching trio of Ja’Marr Chase, Justin Jefferson and Terrace Marshall Jr. has combined for 3,250 receiving yards and 42 touchdowns with each having at least 10.

Oklahoma has a potent offense as well ranked No. 2 behind LSU in yards per game and fifth with 43.2 points per outing. LSU has been susceptible to mobile quarterbacks and Jalen Hurts certainly fits the mold. He’s thrown for 3,632 yards and rushed for 1,255 to pace the attack. And for the first time in a number of years the Sooners defense is good. We’re likely to see plenty of points in this matchup putting the current total of 75.5 in danger, but it’s going to take a defensive stand to win. And the Tigers have the talent to do that.

CFP Score Prediction: LSU 44, Oklahoma 35

CFP Semifinal – PlayStation Fiesta Bowl

No. 2 Ohio State Buckeyes vs. No. 3 Clemson Tigers

Date and Time: Saturday, December 28, 2019, 8 p.m. ET

Location: State Farm Stadium, Glendale, AZ

Opening College Football Odds: Clemson -1.5, O/U 61.5

Ohio State vs. Clemson TV Coverage: ESPN

Ohio State vs. Clemson Preview

If Clemson wants to prove a point to the CFP selection committee, this is the game to do it. The Tigers were criticized for their soft schedule playing just two ranked teams during the season with neither of those clubs currently in the top-25. As Dabo Swinney pointed out so eloquently if it was so easy to go undefeated more teams would do it. Well, the Buckeyes did it and one team will take its first loss of the season. Clemson is getting some respect from oddsmakers surfacing as a 1.5-point favorite and that number spiked to -2.

The competition may not have been the stiffest, but how the Tigers won was impressive, especially over the last eight games. Since escaping UNC with a one-point win, they’ve been nearly unstoppable winning those games by a combined score of 415-78, the latest a 62-17 pasting of Virginia in the ACC Championship. Trevor Lawrence had at least three scoring passes in each of the last six games with a total of 20 and no interceptions in that span. Led by Justin Fields, Ohio State is the highest scoring FBS team and ranks fifth in total offense. The Buckeyes scored the final 27 points to beat Wisconsin, 34-21, in the Big Ten Championship amassing nearly 500 total yards.

Both teams will face the best defense they’ve seen all year, which could make things difficult. Clemson has not allowed more than 20 points in a game and tops the FBS in fewest points and yards per game allowed. Ohio State isn’t far behind at No. 2 in yards and No. 3 in points yielded per game. Both teams have been profitable at the betting window, too. Clemson covered its last four, is 7-1 ATS in the last eight games and 10-3 ATS on the year. Ohio State is 9-4 ATS.

CFP Score Prediction: Clemson 30, Ohio State 27

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