- BetOnline has Clemson (-700) and Alabama (-400) has virtual locks to make the College Football Playoff
- The Tigers could potentially miss the playoffs (+450) if they suffer a loss to Georgia in Week 1
- The 2021 college football season is set to begin this Saturday, August 28th
The College Football Playoff is reportedly considering expanding from four to 12 teams in future years, which in addition to providing more television revenue, would allow more schools to participate in the event.
Since the creation of the CFP in 2014, Alabama and Clemson have each made the playoff six times in seven years. Ohio State and Oklahoma have also each been selected four times. That works out to 71% of the playoff spots to just four of the 130 FBS teams.
Keep that math in mind before making a futures bet on the National Championship or looking at the odds on what colleges are favored to make the four-team playoff this season. Also, be sure to check out our tips for betting on college football games.
To Make 4-Team Playoffs
Locks to make the CFP
Clemson (-700) has made the tournament in six consecutive years and, aside from a mammoth season-opener against Georgia on Sept. 4, will enjoy their usual cupcake slate of ACC competition. To cash a bet on Dabo Swinney’s boys missing the CFP at +450, the Tigers would need to lose a neutral site game to the Bulldogs in Week 1.
Aside from suffering a rare two-loss season in 2019-20, Nick Saban has led Alabama (-400) into the CFP every year since the format started in 2014. After an undefeated 14-0 season, the Crimson Tide are more likely to go back-to-back for only the second time under Saban than they are to miss the playoffs entirely.
Just an absolutely savage quote from Nick Saban about Oregon Football. 😂😂😂 pic.twitter.com/zxmlxymJJ3
— Saturday Down South (@SatDownSouth) August 18, 2021
Two of Ohio State (-250), Oklahoma (-225) and Georgia (+150) are expected to reach the final four with Clemson and Alabama. After playing a COVID-shortened schedule that essentially forced the Big Ten to change the rules to allow them to play for the Conference Championship last year, the Buckeyes will enjoy a full 12-game slate in 2021.
Ryan Day is undefeated in regular-season play through his first two years. Oregon, Penn State and Indiana look to be the only challenges on OSU’s schedule this season.
Best values on the board
The Sooners (-225) have the easiest non-conference schedule in the Big 12. Looking at the full slate, Iowa State, Oklahoma State and Texas (under new coach Steve Sarkisian) are the only clubs capable of stopping Lincoln Riley’s return to the College Football Playoffs.
With Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Oklahoma all having easy schedules (welcome to college football!), where does that leave Georgia (+150)? The Bulldogs only path to the playoff is defeating the Tigers in Week 1 and then losing no more than one game the rest of the way on a schedule that mercifully doesn’t include the Crimson Tide.
Rather than betting on the Dawgs to make the playoffs, however, a smarter route might be wagering on Clemson to miss at +450. Given the Tigers’ weak schedule, they won’t have another chance to impress the CFP committee if they lose to Georgia and their rivals remain undefeated all year.
What We Learned from Dabo Swinney after key Clemson scrimmage https://t.co/FE9iqYQOqY
— Clemson Sports (@ClemsonSportsHQ) August 15, 2021
See below the top sportsbooks where you can wager online and choose the best one for you: