College Football Trends Report: CFP National Championship

Quarterback Bryce Young #9 of the Alabama Crimson Tide runs with the ball against the Cincinnati Bearcats during the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic for the College Football Playoff semifinal game at AT&T Stadium on December 31, 2021 in Arlington, Texas.
Image Credit: Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

College Football has reached the culmination of its season, as Alabama will take on Georgia in the College Football Playoff National Championship. Here are BetPrep’s key trends for Monday night’s SEC rematch between the Dawgs and the Tide at 8:00 p.m. ET from Lucas Oil Stadium.

No. 3 Georgia (-3) at No. 1 Alabama

8:00 p.m. ET, Monday, January 10, 2022 (O/U: 52)

Monday night will mark the 72nd time that Alabama and Georgia will play against each other and if history has anything to say about the outcome, it’ll be the Tide that claims victory. In those 72 meetings, ‘Bama is 42-25-4 all-time against the Dawgs, which includes seven straight victories in this series.

According to ESPN Stats & Informational Group, Monday night will also be the first time that these two teams play against each other in a state other than Alabama or Georgia. The Tide hammered the Bulldogs 41-24 in the 2021 SEC Championship Game in Atlanta on December 4.

Even though ‘Bama covered easily as a 6.5-point underdog in that SEC title game, Georgia once again opened as the favorite for the College Football National Championship matchup. In the last 10 meetings between these two teams, the Bulldogs were favored three times and lost every game outright. In fact, none of those instances were even close:

  • December 4, 2021: Alabama 41, Georgia 24 (-6.5)
  • October 3, 2015: Alabama 38, Georgia 10 (-1.5)
  • September 27, 2008: Alabama 41, Georgia 10 (-6.5)

This will also be the second time since the BCS/CFP Era began in 1998 where a national title game featured a rematch of the regular-season game. In the only other instance, ‘Bama beat LSU in the 2011 title game.

Nick Saban will square off against Kirby Smart, who was an assistant under Saban for a total of 11 seasons at three different stops: LSU, the Miami Dolphins, and at Alabama. Saban has owned his former assistants while at Alabama, posting a 25-1 record, with the one loss coming earlier this season at the hands of Texas A&M and Jimbo Fisher. Saban has yet to lose to one of his former Alabama assists, owning a perfect 13-0 record in the process. He’s 4-0 against Smart.

Saban is also 9-2 all-time against Georgia, with one loss coming in 2004 while he was coaching at LSU and the other in 2007, which was his first season at Alabama. His .818 winning percentage against UGA is the second-best by any head coach against Georgia since the FBS/FCS split in 1978 (with a minimum of five games).

Why even play the game, right? Well, Georgia was historically great on defense this season, save for the 41 points it allowed to ‘Bama in the SEC Championship. In fact, that was the only time this season that the Dawgs allowed more than 17 points in a game. UGA allowed just 7.2 points per game and 238.3 yards per game this season to opponents not named Alabama. For as great as Bryce Young was against UGA in the SEC title game, he’ll need to be as good if not better against a Bulldogs defense that has already seen him this season.

Georgia Key Trends

  • The Bulldogs have covered in seven of their last nine bowl games.
  • Georgia is 12-5 ATS in its last 17 neutral site games.
  • The Under has hit in seven of the Dawgs’ last 10 games overall.

Alabama Key Trends

  • The Crimson Tide has covered in five of its last six games when listed as the Underdog.
  • Alabama is just 1-4 ATS in its last five national championship games.
  • The Over is 3-0-1 in the Tide’s last five national championship games.