Published on Monday, 1/11/16, at 10:58 a.m. Eastern.
–My all-time documented record at VegasInsider.com for national-title games is 14-2. Check out my pick for tonight’s game here. Since Oct. 29, my college football plays have cashed at a 45-26 clip (63.4% clip, +16.9 units!).
–Clemson’s lone national title came in 1982 under former coach Danny Ford, who led the Tigers past Nebraska in the Orange Bowl. Ford remains the youngest coach to win a national title at the age of 33. He posted a 96-29-4 record at Clemson before leaving amid a probe resulting in NCAA sanctions. After a five-year run at Arkansas that included one trip to the SEC Championship Game, Ford retired at the age of 50. He hasn’t coached since and lives on a farm in Central South Carolina.
–I’ll be a guest on The Reynolds and Gunter show in South Carolina today at 5:35 p.m. Eastern.
–If you’re into it….tonight’s picks from ESPN’s staff.
–My Man Ben Fawkes over at ESPN Chalk quizzed several of the top bookmakers in Las Vegas on the Alabama-Clemson handle.
–For those real bullish on Clemson tonight, you can bet the Tigers at adjusted numbers for better odds. For instance, if you want Clemson -3.5 points, many offshores are offering a +360 payout (risk $100 to win $360). You can also have Clemson at -1.5 for a +225 return.
–On the flip side, bettors can take Alabama at -10.5 (+140), -14.5 (+200) and -17.5 (+315).
–The same adjusted options are available for the total. Gamblers can take ‘under’ 40.5 (+265), ‘under’ 43.5 (+200), ‘under’ 46.5 (+130). Then there are these choices for the ‘over:’ 54.5 (+145), 57.5 (+195) and 60.5 (+285).
–Jake Coker’s ‘over/under’ props at Sportsbook.ag look like this: completions (19.5, -130 for the ‘under,’ -110 for the ‘over’), pass attempts (28.5, -120 either way), passing yards (217.5, -120 either way), TD passes (1.5, -155 for ‘over,’ +115 ‘under’).
–I like Derrick Henry’s rushing yards ‘over’ 145.5 yards at a -125 price.
–Here are the prop totals for Clemson QB Deshaun Watson at Sportsbook.ag: completions (22.5 u-130), pass attempts (36.5 flat), passing yards (238.5 o-135), and TD passes (1.5 o-140). Watson’s total for rushing yards is 58.5 (o-125).
–Another prop I like (for a very small amount, to be clear) is Alabama freshman WR Calvin Ridley to score the game’s first TD for a +750 payout (risking $50 would net $375).