Tonights CFP Championship Game features the number three ranked Ohio State Buckeyes and the number one ranked Alabama Crimson Tide for the 2020 season’s bragging rights. Ohio State, as would be expected, will enter this game as underdogs. Vegas has the Tide as 7.5 point favorites going into the game. Alabama head coach Nick Saban, as also would be expected from most intelligent head coaches, unlike what we saw come out of Clemson, did not give the Buckeyes any bulletin board material leading up to the game, going out of his way to compliment Ohio State by stating what a solid all-around team they are.
Ohio State faced off against the Clemson Tigers in the semi-final game. Before the game, Clemson's head coach, Dabo Swinney, might have learned a valuable lesson when he both verbally questioned Ohio States' ranking and then himself ranked them the 11th ranked team in the country. Dabo’s reasoning was that the Buckeye’s had played so few games on the season. This coupled with having been knocked out of the CFP last season in the semi-final game by Clemson gave the team all the motivation they needed, eventually blowing out the Tigers 49 to 28 in the Sugar Bowl to earn a birth into the Championship game.
Alabama enters the game loaded, just as they are every season but this season they are led by Heisman Trophy runner-up, quarterback Mac Jones who gets to throw the ball to the Heisman Trophy winner, wideout DeVonta Smith. Alabama does have some key losses, including their starting center, Landon Dickerson, who went down with a season-ending knee injury in the SEC Championship Game against the University of Florida. Alabama may get back for this game their other star wideout, Jaylen Waddle who has not played since late in October with an ankle injury.
For the Buckeyes, all the questions about health have surrounded their star quarterback Justin Fields, who following a nasty hit to his ribs in their game against Clemson, stayed in the game but was in a noticeable amount of pain. Despite the injury and the serious pain that Fields seemed to be experiencing he still managed to pump out career highs for a single game, throwing for 385 yards and 6 touchdowns. While Fields is expected to play in tonight's game the Buckeyes would not comment on the extent of his injuries or any limitations that they may cause in the Championship game.
Luckily for Ohio State, they do not have to just lean on their dynamic quarterback Justin Fields as they also have one of the most impressive runningbacks in the country in Trey Sermon. In just the last two games Try has managed to rush for a whopping 524 yards which is also an Ohio State record over a two-game span.
The last showdown between these two teams was in the 2014 CFP semifinal game. Ohio State won that game and eventually defeated Oregon to win the national title.
Ohio State Buckeyes (6-0) 1st Big Ten Vs. Alabama Crimson Tide 1st SEC
- When: Monday, January 11th, 8:00 PM EST
- Where: Hard Rock Stadium, Miami Gardens, Florida
- TV: ESPN
- Odds: Alabama Crimson Tide -7.5
- Over/Under: 75.5