The defenses will be on trial Monday night when the top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide face the No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes in the College Football Playoff National Championship in Miami. The teams average more than 92 points and 1,073 yards per game combined. Alabama (12-0) is led by Heisman winner DeVonta Smith at receiver and award finalist Mac Jones at quarterback, while Ohio State (7-0) has its own elite players in quarterback Justin Fields and running back Trey Sermon. The Buckeyes’ defense allows 21 points per game, while the Tide allow fewer than 20.
Kickoff is set for 8 p.m. ET. The Crimson Tide are nine-point favorites in the latest Alabama vs. Ohio State odds from William Hill Sportsbook, while the over-under for total points scored is 75. Before entering any Ohio State vs. Alabama picks, you’ll want to see the latest college football predictions and betting advice from the advanced computer model at SportsLine.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every FBS college football game 10,000 times. Over the past four-plus years, the proprietary computer model has generated a stunning profit of over $3,500 for $100 players on its top-rated college football picks against the spread. It entered the final week of bowl season a sizzling 56-36 on all top-rated picks, returning over $400. Anyone who has followed it has seen huge returns.
- Ohio State vs. Alabama: Crimson Tide -8
- Ohio State vs. Alabama over-under: 75
- Ohio State vs. Alabama money line: Buckeyes +250; Crimson Tide -300
- Ohio State: RB Trey Sermon has 636 of his 868 rushing yards over the past three games
- Alabama: WR DeVonta Smith had at least 130 receiving yards eight times this season
Alabama Crimson Tide
Why Alabama can cover
Alabama is 7-1 against the spread in its last eight games following an against the spread loss, and the Tide took their foot off the gas late in their 31-14 win against Notre Dame. They were favored by 20 because they score more than 48 points per game and Jones and Smith have been nearly impossible to stop. Jones threw for more than 4,000 yards with 36 TDs and just four interceptions, completing 77 percent of his passes. The offense averages more than 540 yards per game.
Smith had 105 catches for 1,641 yards and 20 TDs and also scored on an 84-yard punt return. Running back Najee Harris also makes a difference for the Tide, who are 7-1 against the spread in their last eight against Big Ten teams.
The defense allows fewer than 20 points per contest, and All-America cornerback Patrick Surtain (11 passes defended) and a bevy of talented young players, including Brian Branch (two interceptions, TD), lock down the secondary.
Why Ohio State can cover
Ohio State is 6-2 against the spread in its last eight bowl games, and the defense has been overshadowed but can make big plays. End Jonathan Cooper and tackles Tommy Togiai and Haskell Garrett have combined for 8.5 of the unit’s 19 sacks in seven games.
Sermon followed a school-record 331-yard effort in the Big Ten title game with 193 in the semifinal win against Clemson. Fields threw for 385 yards and six touchdowns against a strong Clemson defense and now faces an Alabama unit that ranks 76th in the nation against the pass.
How to make Alabama vs. Ohio State picks
SportsLine’s model is leaning under on the total, suggesting sacks and takeaways will play a major role. It also says one side of the spread cashes in more than 50 percent of simulations. You can only see the pick here.
So who wins Ohio State vs. Alabama in the 2021 College Football National Championship Game? And which side of the spread hits more than half the time? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Alabama vs. Ohio State spread you need to jump on, all from the model on a 56-36 roll on college football picks, and find out.