College Football Futures: Crimson Tide Lead List of College Football Contenders
Without a doubt, the Alabama Crimson Tide are the cream of college football futures. They’ve won four National Championships (2009, 2011, 2012, 2015) under head coach Nick Saban and they’re +600 favorites to defend their title on the college football futures market.
There will be plenty of competition this year – especially in the SEC, where you’ll find Alabama’s main roadblock to the College Football Playoff. Here are the top five CFP contenders heading into Week 1 of the 2016 FBS campaign:
Alabama Crimson Tide (+600)
The Tide roll into the new season as the No. 1 team on the preseason rankings, and the +175 favorites to win the SEC. But they’re almost certainly overvalued; they have three very tough road games, at Arkansas, Tennessee, and the next team on the list. Saban still has to figure out who his starting quarterback will be this year.
LSU Tigers (+700)
Playing the Tide in Baton Rouge might be all the Tigers need to win both the SEC (at +375) and the National Championship. Les Miles returns to coach a Tigers team loaded from top to bottom, featuring this year’s leading Heisman candidate, RB Leonard Fournette, Jr. Away games at Arkansas and Florida won’t be easy, but LSU is pointed at an 11-1 season.
Clemson Tigers (+850)
Clemson might be the No. 2 team on the preseason rankings, but these Tigers might not even be the best team in the ACC, even if they’re the conference favorites at +150. Their season hinges on a road game against the Florida State Seminoles (+210) in late October. It’s up to Clemson’s new offensive line to keep QB Deshaun Watson healthy and on the field.
Ohio State Buckeyes (+900)Big Ten teams have been undervalued in recent years, playing in the long shadow of the SEC. The Buckeyes lost just one game in 2014 (when they won the National Championship) and 2015, and they’re on track to do the same this year under head coach Urban Meyer. OSU are +160 favorites to win the Big Ten; their fate could be decided at home in the season finale against the final team on the list.
Michigan Wolverines (+900)
If there’s one program in the Big Ten that doesn’t get overlooked, it’s Jim Harbaugh’s Wolverines. They’re +200 to win the conference, but road games late in the year against Michigan State, Iowa and Ohio State should be daunting enough to keep Michigan out of the playoffs.
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