The grounds team at the University of Phoenix Stadium hasn’t even replaced the grass for this Saturday’s Arizona vs Green Bay NFL Divisional Playoff Game, but Vegas has already anointed Alabama and Clemson the favorites to win the 2016-17 College Football National Championship. Alabama and Clemson played in one of the best college football games of all time on Jan. 11. But, do either warrant favoritism to win next year’s title?
Early 2016-17 College Football National Championship Futures Betting Odds
Alabama & Clemson Are Online College Football Betting Favorites to Win 2016-17 College Football National Championship
Alabama loses senior QB Jake Coker. They’re expected to lose Heisman Trophy winning RB Derrick Henry. Will it matter? Not really. Alabama runs out great rushers the way that Anheuser-Busch runs calories out of a Bud Light. Save for senior Reggie Raglans and junior Jonathan Allen, the defense will return a ton of starters. Alabama’s got a shot at the repeat.
Unless Dashaun Watson decides to leave early, it’s hard to see Clemson not winning the ACC. The Tigers are also expected to return up to 17 starters including DE Kevin Dodd, a junior, who kept Clemson in the game until the end. Clemson, like Alabama, has a big shot at the trophy in 2017.
Oklahoma has two huge issues. First, the Big 12 doesn’t project to be a very good conference meaning that like this season in the CFP, Oklahoma, if they make it to the CFP, won’t be as battle-tested as a team like Clemson. Second, Oklahoma takes on Ohio State on Sept. 9. Maybe, it’s just me, but it’s hard to see Bob Stoops out coaching Urban Meyer in that matchup.
Sophomore Brandon Harris will be a junior. So will sophomore RB Leonard Fournette and WR Malachi Dupre. Why is that important? It’s important because Harris, Fournette and Dupre lead the Tigers in each of their positions. LSU isn’t expected to lose a single offensive lineman from the roster. Coach Les Miles adds one of the best defensive minds in college football, Dave Aranda, to be the d-coordinator at LSU. The Bayou Tigers are stacked.