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College Football Bowl Game Look-Ahead Lines

College Football Bowl Game Look-Ahead Lines

With the college football regular season wrapping up last Saturday, attention is now turned toward the national title and bowl season. Now, the matchups haven’t been determined yet for which teams are playing for which bowls, but many projections can be made and we have a list of some of the notable potential bowl matchups.

Online sportsbook Bovada has listed some look-ahead lines for bowl season, including the College Football Playoff that I already delved into in this article. The sportsbook also added odds for the Cotton Bowl, Orange Bowl, Rose Bowl and Sugar Bowl.

Cotton Bowl

There are two lines out for potential Cotton Bowl matchups: Memphis vs Alabama and Memphis vs Florida.

The Tigers put together a fantastic 11-1 regular season, finishing first in the AAC and knocking off 10-2 Cincinnati in Week 14. The two will meet again this weekend in the AAC championship game with the Tigers favored by 10.5 points. In the look-ahead lines, Memphis is a dog to both Alabama (+15.5) and Florida (+10.5).

Both of those SEC squads finished with 10-2 records, with the Crimson Tide falling to then-No. 2 LSU and then-No. 15 Auburn, both by less than a touchdown. Meanwhile, the Gators fell to LSU and the Georgia Bulldogs, the two teams competing in the SEC championship game.

No surprise to see an AAC team, albeit a good one, coming in as an underdog against top teams in the SEC.

Orange Bowl

Similar to the Cotton Bowl, there are two look-ahead lines for potential Orange Bowl matchups. ACC squad Virginia can be found in both matchups with, once again, Florida and Alabama being the potential opponent.

The Cavaliers had their ups and downs this season, finishing with a 9-3 record and going 6-2 in ACC play. They are coming off a 39-30 triumph over No. 24 Virginia Tech to close out the season and secure their spot in the ACC championship game across from the No. 3 Clemson Tigers. Virginia is a 19.5-point underdog in a potential matchup with Alabama but is a 14-point favorite against Florida, which I think is a mistake. If it’s not, hammer the Gators.

Rose Bowl

The Penn State Nittany Lions appear to be the Big Ten representative for the Rose Bowl with either Oregon or Utah opposing them.

Penn State dropped two of its last four games of the regular season, finishing with a 10-2 record, including 7-2 in the Big Ten. Its two losses came against then-No. 2 Ohio State and then-No. 17 Minnesota. The defense was there all season for the Lions, allowing the seventh-fewest ppg in the nation at 14.1, but the offense struggled against top-end talent, averaging 22 ppg against ranked opponents. Penn State is a slight 3.5-point favorite over Oregon but a 1.5-point underdog to Utah.

The Pac-12 side of things is still undetermined with Oregon and Utah meeting in the Pac-12 championship game this weekend. They are very similar teams with a defense-first mentality, but they still have the ability to put points on the board offensively. The Ducks allowed only five opponents to score more than 10 points against them all season. The Utes, meanwhile, had just six foes rack up more than 10 points against them and finished third in the nation in fewest ppg allowed.

With the defense-heavy approach of the potential teams in the Rose Bowl, perhaps an UNDER is the way to go.

Sugar Bowl

Bovada believes it will be Georgia taking on Baylor in the Sugar Bowl as that’s the only look-ahead line available at this time. Of course, Georgia is meeting LSU in the SEC championship game and Baylor is looking for revenge against Oklahoma in the Big 12 championship game.

The Bulldogs have just one defeat this year and it came against unranked South Carolina in Week 7 in double overtime. Georgia allowed the second-fewest ppg in the nation at 10.4, just 0.3 ppg more than first-place Clemson. Offensively, the Bulldogs scored more than 30 points just four times all season and three of those games came outside of conference play.

As for the Bears, they have just one defeat, falling at home to then-No. 10 Oklahoma 34-31 in their only contest this season against a ranked opponent. Baylor was leading that game 31-10 at the half but was outscored 24-0 in the second half. The Bears finished in the top 15 in the nation offensively and defensively.

Georgia is a 9.5-point favorite for this potential matchup, which I think is a little hefty because its offense has struggled and winning by 10 in what could be a low-scoring affair may be difficult.

Here’s a look at the potential bowl look-ahead lines:

2019 Cotton Bowl Classic
Memphis vs Alabama+15.5/-15.5-115/-115
Memphis vs Florida+9.5/-9.5-115/-115

Odds as of December 2 at Bovada

2019 Orange Bowl 
Virginia vs Alabama+19.5/-19.5-115/-115
Virginia vs Florida-14/+14-115/-115

Odds as of December 2 at Bovada

2020 Rose Bowl
Penn State vs Oregon-3.5/+3.5-115/-115
Penn State vs Utah+1.5/-1.5-115/-115

Odds as of December 2 at Bovada

2020 Sugar Bowl
Georgia vs Baylor-9.5/+9.5-115/-115

Odds as of December 2 at Bovada