The Clemson Tigers are the college football champions for the 2016-17 season! In what was one of the most thrilling championship games ever played, the Tigers squeaked out the 35-31 win on a last-second touchdown pass from All-American quarterback DeSean Watkins to Hunter Renfrow with one second left on the game clock.
Now that the Tigers are the champions of the football world the big question is can they repeat next season?
Star QB DeShaun Watson still has one year left of eligibility at the University of Clemson. However, the strong rumor is that Watson will forgo his senior season and head to the NFL – and really, who can blame him.
Even though the Tigers will lose their team captain and star of the team if Watson decides to go and make the leap to playing on Sundays instead of Saturdays next season, the Tigers are still going to have a very good team in the fall of 2017.
Now that the season has come to an end, itoffseason already time for college football fans to look at next year’s favorites and where their team stands oddsmakers into next August.
ESPN reports that the early favorite to win the 2017 NCAA championship is Alabama.
While the Tide will lose several key players this off season including five senior defensive starters, they still have Las Vegas oddsmakers believing they will be right back in this position next season. Bama defensive end Jonathon Allen is going to be the biggest hole to fill for the Tide, as Allen will surely be a first round selection in the upcoming 2017 NFL Draft.
What may have oddsmakers believing that Alabama will be right back in the title game next year is quarterback Jalen Hurts along with Alabama’s top running backs and receivers are expected back in 2017. Hurts has shown that he has what it takes to shine on the big screen for a freshman, and next year his skills will only be better.
The Tide are listed at 3/1 to win the 2017 championship, but the competition isn’t too far behind. The Florida State Seminoles are in second place at 7/1 followed by a three-way tie for third at 8/1 between Oklahoma, Ohio State, and USC.
With Vegas odds makers having those four teams listed as the early favorites to capture the crown next season, how about this for an opening week of action next season.
Florida State will open their season by taking on the Alabama Crimson Tide on Sept. 2 in Atlanta. If that isn’t good enough, the following week Oklahoma travels to Columbus to take on the Ohio State Buckeyes on Sept 9.
That is enough to make a college football fan wish his or her summer away and to get right back to the action!
Other teams of interest that had a great season in 2016 and are high up on the Vegas odds board include Michigan and LSU, who are both listed at 12/1 while Penn State, Oklahoma State, and Auburn are all sitting at 30/1.
Notre Dame and the Houston Cougars have both taken huge steps backwards when it comes to the odds of winning next season’s championship. One year ago today the Irish were listed at 35/1 and the Cougars were 75/1.
As of today, Vegas Insider had Notre Dame at 65/1 while the Cougars are a whopping 500/1.
Here is a look at the top ten favorites to win the 2017 NCAA football championship. Be sure to click here to see the odds for every team listed on the Las Vegas sports book board.
- Alabama — 3/1
- Florida State — 7/1
- Ohio State — 8/1
- Oklahoma — 8/1
- USC — 8/1
- LSU — 12/1
- Michigan — 12/1
- Louisville — 14/1
- Clemson — 20/1
- Texas — 28/1
The 2018 College Football Playoff Championship game is scheduled to take place on Jan. 8 from the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.
[Featured Image by Brian Blanco/Getty Images]