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Alabama Opens As 7-Point Chalk in Rematch for National Title With Clemson

January 1, 2017

And then there were just two. After an eventful 2016 college football regular season, the national championship game finally has its participants.

College football fans, coaches and players alike must be feeling a bit of déjà vu.

On New Year’s Eve, the Alabama Crimson Tide punched their ticket to the national championship game with a workmanlike victory over the Washington Huskies 24-7.

Joining the Tide to play for the national championship will be the Clemson Tigers. The Tigers routed Ohio State on New Year’s Eve 31-0 to setup a rematch of last year’s College Football Playoff championship game.

Following Clemson’s win on Saturday, Alabama opened as 7-point chalk for the January 9 championship game to be played in Tampa, Florida at Raymond James Stadium.

Alabama won the national championship last year with an exciting 45-40 win over Clemson. In that game, the Tide was 6.5-point chalk and did not cover the number winning by just 5 points.

Clemson has won five of its six bowl games as an underdog including its impressive rout on Saturday of Ohio State. Clemson was between a 3- and 3.5-point dog to Ohio State leading up to the Saturday game.

However, as the kickoff approached, large money came in on Clemson and shrank the closing line on many books to Ohio State -1.

This is now the 96th time in Alabama’s past 97 games that it has been the favorite. The only game in that span where Alabama was the underdog was on October 3, 2015, when the Tide was a 1-point dog against Georgia. Alabama proceeded to rout the Bulldogs in that game 38-10.

The over/under opened for the January 9 championship game at 54.5.

Clemson returns its biggest weapon quarterback Deshaun Watson to the game. Watson, who was second in the recent Heisman Trophy balloting, has not had the spectacular numbers he posted last season, but has helped lead his team to its second straight national title game and will be looking to avenge last year’s heartbreaking loss.

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