Capital One Bowl Michigan State vs. Alabama Spread Drops to 9.5

Written by:
Dan Shapiro
Published on:
Capital One Bowl Michigan State vs. Alabama Spread

After opening at -11, the Capital One Bowl Michigan State vs. Alabama spread has dropped to -9.5 in favor of the Crimson Tide.  Spread action on this New Year’s Day game was even.  75 percent of the money line action was going towards Alabama.  The 52.5 total was also getting relatively balanced action.

Things to watch for in the Capital One Bowl game:

Michigan State will want to take advantage of Alabama’s banged up secondary. 

The Spartans will be without leading WR B.J. Cunningham.

Alabama has had trouble running the ball.

Alabama’s offensive line has been inconsistent this season, though they seem to have an edge over Michigan State’s offensive line in nearly every category, especially when it comes to the passing game.

Michigan State Defensive tackles Jerel Worthy, Blake Treadwell and Kevin Pickelman are disruptive run-stoppers.


The Scout’s Edge notes that only two FBS teams have intercepted more passes than Alabama this year, and only two FBS players have intercepted more than Tide FS Robert Lester.

With Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio once working under Alabama head coach Nick Saban when he was leading the Spartans, these two coaches are very familiar with one another and that factor should – in theory – keep this game relatively close (enough so that Michigan State should be able to cover within the current 9.5-point spread). 

DS. Williamson, a analyst, writes in regard to Alabama’s chances:

“If the online sports betting spread for the Capital One Bowl was more in tune with what football handicappers are thinking, let’s say ‘Bama -6 ½ to -7 ½ or so, then more gamblers would be backing the Crimson Tide to cover in this game.  As it is, only 57% is backing the Tide.  Sure, that’s a big number, but it’s not nearly as big as 70%, which is what I expected the percentage to be.

“To me, Alabama may or may not be the superior team in this matchup.  The Crimson Tide looked great when beating up on Florida, Ole Miss, Tennessee and Mississippi State, but only Mississippi State is a team that deserves some recognition out of that group of four.  So, I’m actually loving the 10 points.”

That being said, The Spartans are just 1-5 Against The Spread in their last 6 games as an underdog of 3.5-10.0.

Still, they have excelled against winning teams, going 5-1 ATS.  They are also 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games following a Straight Up win vs. the Crimson Tide, who are 2-9 ATS in their last 11 games following a S.U. loss.

In the end, it appears Michigan State should have enough going for it to cover the 9.5-point spread.

- Dan Shapiro,

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