It was a pretty good bowl season for me, I’m at about 64% right now in terms of picking winners. I’ll take that all day, every day.
As usual, all times Eastern and all predictions wrong.
Monday, January 13
8:00: Louisiana State vs. Clemson (College Football Playoff Championship Game @ New Orleans, LA; ESPN): Hoo boy, this is going to be a ball game, folks. I like both of these teams. Clemson probably really wishes they had that defensive line from last year, as the main occasions where LSU has really been challenged at all this year, they were facing fantastic defensive lines that could keep Joe Burrow contained. I think Clemson is actually still good enough to challenge them again this year, and they’ve certainly showed they can hang with a challenge by coming back against Ohio State. I think, ultimately, my pick here is going to be to hedge this one a little bit. I’ve got LSU winning a close one and Clemson covering the 5.5.
SP+ line: LSU -2.5
Vegas line: LSU -5.5
Watchability tier: IV
Previous meetings: Three all time, and none in the regular season. LSU won the 1958-9 Sugar Bowl 7-0, and then prevailed 10-7 in the 1996 Peach Bowl. The Tigers from South Carolina finally got a win in the series back in the 2012 Chick-fil-a Bowl, 25-24.
Last bowl game: LSU had no problems with Oklahoma in the Peach Bowl back on December 28, winning 63-28. Clemson, though, gritted out an instant classic with a 29-23 win over Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl.
Announcers: Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit