As the college football postseason continues, I find myself reflecting on my successful 8-6 record during the bowl season. Notably, I hit both of my wagers for the College Football Playoff semifinals, bringing my season record to 38-28. It's a record I'm proud of and one that I'm hoping to end strong with a couple of bets on the CFP championship game between Michigan and Washington.
Let's dive into the details of this highly anticipated matchup:
The CFP championship game will take place in Houston, featuring No. 1 Michigan against No. 2 Washington. The game is set to kick off at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Time, and you can catch all the action on ESPN.
The point spread for this game stands at Michigan -4.5, with a total of 56.5 points. These numbers give us some insight into what we can expect from this matchup.
Michigan's recent victory over Alabama in the Rose Bowl was a clear display of their superiority. Despite the close score, a deeper analysis reveals that the Wolverines dominated the game statistically. They averaged 1.5 more yards per play than the Crimson Tide, and if we discount one eight-play touchdown drive by Alabama, their average drops significantly. The Wolverines also had some good fortune with fumbles but managed to convert their one recovery into a short touchdown drive. These factors indicate that Michigan is simply a better team overall than Washington.
While Washington's quarterback Michael Penix Jr. and his elite wide receivers had an impressive performance against Texas's defense in the Sugar Bowl, they may face a tougher challenge against Michigan. According to an anonymous coach who faced both teams, Michigan's defense is comparable to Texas's but with better defensive backs. The Wolverines have excelled in limiting the number of passing plays over 10 and 20 yards, which may hinder Washington's ability to gain significant yardage through the air.
On the offensive side, Michigan heavily relies on their rushing game, which ranks 17th in the nation, running the ball 59.1% of the time. This strategy is unlikely to change against a Washington defense that struggles against the run. Texas managed to average 6.43 yards per carry against the Huskies, showcasing their vulnerability in this area. Expect Michigan to lean on running backs Blake Corum and Donovan Edwards to control the game and keep Washington's potent offense off the field.
Historically, favorites in the CFP championship game have covered the spread in the past four seasons, often by double digits. While asking Michigan to beat Washington by a significant margin is ambitious, I believe they can control the game enough to cover the spread. Blake Corum, in particular, is poised to have a big night, contributing to Michigan's success.
So, my picks for this exciting matchup are:
- Michigan to cover the spread (-4.5)
- Blake Corum to rush for over 101.5 yards
I hope you all enjoy the game and join me in rooting for a thrilling end to the college football season!