The 2017 college football championship may be the same matchup–Alabama vs. Clemson–we saw a year ago, but that doesn’t make it any less compelling.
No. 1 Alabama, fresh off a tidy 24-7 victory over No. 4 Washington, has a chance to go down as one of the best teams ever–or, at the very least, one of the best defenses ever–with a similar showing against the No. 2 Tigers.
But while Nick Saban’s defense has been historically good, Clemson has the weapons to at least make things interesting. Deshaun Watson may not have won the Heisman, but he was probably the best player in America this year. Wayne Gallman and Mike Williams are explosive. The Tigers hung 40 against Alabama last year, and Dabo Swinney’s squad has the talent to do it again.
That said, the Crimson Tide have looked unstoppable all year and are favored by 6.5 points to win their second national title in a row.
But the experts aren’t nearly as convinced, as many pundits are pegging Clemson to pull the upset:
Alabama vs. Clemson Picks
Note: We’ll update this as more expert picks roll in
Andy Staples, Sports Illustrated: Alabama
Pete Thamel, Sports Illustrated: Clemson
Lindsay Schnell, Sports Illustrated: Clemson
Brian Hamilton, Sports Illustrated: Clemson
Joan Niesen, Sports Illustrated: Clemson
Colin Becht, Sports Illustrated: Alabama
Dennis Dodd, CBS Sports: Clemson
Jon Solomon, CBS Sports: Clemson
Jerry Palm, CBS Sports: Alabama
Tom Fornelli, CBS Sports: Alabama
Robby Kalland, CBS Sports: Clemson
Ben Kercheval, CBS Sports: Clemson
OddsShark.com Computer: Alabama