Sugar Bowl Betting Odds - Point Spread Pick
Point Spread: Alabama -17
Money Line: Oklahoma +600 Alabama -750
Oklahoma's dreams of playing for a national title came to an end with a 36-20 loss to Texas on Oct. 12 as 13.5-point favorites in a neutral site game. The Sooners were hammered by Baylor 41-12 in early November as 17-point road underdogs in their only other straight-up loss. While they went 10-2 SU, they covered the spread in seven of the 12 games with a 3-3 mark ATS on the road. The total went OVER in four of their last six games.
The Sooners' game plan in this matchup will revolve primarily around a rushing attack that averaged 235.8 yards a game. It will probably be their only option considering that the passing game could only muster an average of 186.7 yards. Brennan Clay led the team in rushing with 913 yards on 158 carries, but Oklahoma's roster is deep with players that can run the ball. Look for Blake Bell to get the start at quarterback with Trevor Knight listed as questionable with a hand injury.
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The Crimson Tide remained at the top of the rankings all season long in defense of last season's national title, but their plans to repeat came unraveled in a heart-breaking 34-28 loss to Auburn on the final play of the regular season. They ended the year 11-1 SU with a 6-5-1 record ATS after failing to cover in their last three games. They went 2-3 ATS on the road and the total went OVER in four of the five contests.
Many people still believe that Alabama is the best team in the nation behind a balanced offense that averaged 448.9 yards and 38.8 points a game to go along with a shutdown defense that held opponents to just 11.3 points a game, which was the second lowest total in the nation. The Tide come into this matchup as heavy favorites and for good reason. You have to believe they will be carrying a huge chip on their shoulders from what most feel was a fluky loss to the Tigers. Look for a big night from players such as quarterback AJ McCarron and running back TJ Yeldon, who have come up huge for this team all season long.
Oklahoma Sooners vs. Alabama Crimson Tide Betting Trends
The Sooners are 9-3 ATS in their last 12 games outside the conference, but they have failed to cover in their last five games against the SEC. The total has stayed UNDER in their last four games against the SEC.
The Crimson Tide is 8-1 ATS in their last nine neutral site games and 5-1 ATS in their last six games against a team from the Big 12. The total has stayed UNDER in three of their last four nonconference games.
These two last met in 2002 and 2003 with Oklahoma winning both games SU while failing to cover each time. The Sooners are 2-5 ATS in their last seven bowl games as opposed to Alabama's perfect 4-0 record ATS in their last four bowl appearances.
Sugar Bowl Point Spread Pick
Oklahoma is a decent team and highly competitive in the confines of the Big 12, but it faces a top SEC team that still has something to prove. Look for the Tide to score early and often in the Big Easy as they roll to a victory that easily covers the 17 points.