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2020 CFP National Championship - LSU Tigers vs Clemson Tigers
Both teams will scratch and claw as they fight for the college football National Championship to put a bow on the 2019 season. Playing in their first College Football Playoff, the LSU Tigers did what they’ve done all season, and they did it in a national semifinal against a one-loss Oklahoma squad. With Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow lighting up the scoreboard, LSU triumphed 63-28, scoring the most points in a CFP game. Making their fifth straight appearance in the CFP, Clemson advanced to its fourth National Championship game and looks to become the first repeat winner in the now six-year history of the playoff format. Surprisingly there has never been a No. 1 seed emerge victorious.
2020 CFP National Championship at a Glance
Date: Monday, January 13th, 2020
Time: 8:00 p.m. ET
Venue: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, Louisiana
Matchup: LSU Tigers vs. Clemson Tigers
Odds: LSU -5, Total 69
CFP National Championship Game Preview
LSU is the fourth No. 1 seed to reach the national championship and they are trying to become the first to win it all. These Tigers opened as a 3-point favorite with the line quickly wagered to LSU -6. It’s the first time Clemson has been given points all season with last taking place around this time last year when Clemson was a 5-point underdog in the national championship against Alabama. Those Tigers went on to win, 44-16, slapping the largest defeat on a Nick Saban-coached Tide team.
Any shortcomings LSU has on defense have been covered by Burrow and the offense. LSU leads the nation in scoring with an average of 48.9 points per game following their 63-28 win over Oklahoma in the Peach Bowl semifinal. And if you thought Burrow and his teammates would be overwhelmed in their first playoff game, you were dead wrong. Burrow completed 21 of 27 for 403 yards and seven touchdowns in the first half. The Sooners defense isn’t as good as Clemson’s so it’s going to be difficult for LSU to repeat those numbers. The balanced offensive attack should present problems for Clemson, however.
With a few weeks before the championship you can expect LSU back Clyde Edwards-Helaire to recuperate from his injury. The team’s leading rusher with over 1,300 yards had just two carries against OU. Chris Curry picked up the slack in his stead going for 89 yards on 16 carries. But you can expect Burrow to continue throwing the ball to the best group of receivers in college football. Justin Jefferson had 14 catches for 227 yards and four touchdowns against Oklahoma.
College football fans will be treated to a wonderful matchup featuring strength versus strength. LSU’s top scoring offense against Clemson’s No. 1 ranked scoring defense. Clemson allowed 516 yards to Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl, but they stiffened in the red zone holding the Buckeyes to three first half field goals when a touchdown would have changed the entire complexion of the game. It also allowed Clemson to fight back from a 16-0 deficit.
And Clemson’s defense came up with the biggest play when Nolan Turner intercepted a Justin Fields offering late in the fourth quarter. Fields threw one interception all season and was picked off twice by Clemson. Both teams are pretty good on the other side of the ball as well. Needing a field goal to take the lead, Trevor Lawrence instead marched Clemson 94 yards in four plays in the final three minutes for the go-ahead touchdown, with a strike to Travis Etienne.
And LSU showed off its defense by holding the potent Oklahoma attack to only 322 total yards and 5 of 13 on third down. Jalen Hurts was just 15 of 31 for 217 yards and an interception, and LSU softened up after building a 56-14 lead early in the third quarter.
CFP National Championship Game Format
Through a selection process by a 13-member committee, the top four teams are ranked No. 1 through No. 4 and compete in the College Football Playoff. The bracket-style format pits No. 1 vs. No. 4 and No. 2 vs. No. 3 in the national semifinals, which are played two weeks before the National Championship Game.
The two semifinal sites rotate between six major bowl games. For the 2019 season, the Peach Bowl and Fiesta Bowl will host the semifinals with the winner of those games meeting in New Orleans. The Rose Bowl and the Sugar Bowl will be the semifinal destinations next season with the Orange Bowl and Cotton Bowl entertaining semifinalists for the 2021 campaign.
The first CFP following the 2014 season was a huge success at the turnstiles with over a quarter of a million fans attending the three games. The first national championship game attracted 85,788 fans to ATT
Stadium to watch Ohio State claim the title with a victory over the Oregon Ducks.
Interestingly enough, a No. 1 seed has never won it all. The No. 2 seed has beat the No. 1 seed in all three times that a No. 1 made it to the title bout, and the other two CFP National Championships have been won by No. 4 seeds.
CFP National Championship Game Results
The inaugural title game was a one-sided affair with Ohio State upsetting seven-point favorite Oregon, 42-20. The Buckeyes held a one-point lead midway through the third quarter before future first-round draft pick Ezekiel Elliott went off. Elliott scored the game’s final three touchdowns and totaled 246 rush yards, a record that still stands. OSU won its first national title since 2002 and its eighth overall.
The next two games were both bangers between Alabama and Clemson. Alabama won the 2015 season game, 45-40, by holding off a late Clemson comeback bid and handing the Tigers their only loss of the season. The Tide were coming off a shutout of Michigan State in the semis, but had a tough time containing Deshaun Watson, who amassed a national championship game record 478 total yards.
Watson’s touchdown pass with 12 seconds remaining pulled Clemson close, but Bama recovered the onside kick to seal the victory. The teams combined for over 1,000 yards of offense with Clemson producing 550 yards against the nation’s third-best defense.
The rematch a year later was just as scintillating with Clemson exacting its revenge, handing Alabama its only loss of the season. It was also the first ever rematch between No. 1 and No. 2 in a national championship game. Clemson had a number of players return for just this reason with Deshaun Watson being one of them, and he went out in style. Watson set a CFP title game record with 420 passing yards, the final two coming on a touchdown with one second left on the clock for the game-winner.
The final four-and-a-half minutes were heart-stopping. Wayne Gallman’s touchdown gave the Tigers a 28-24 lead, only to watch Jalen Hurts throw a scoring pass with 2:31 remaining for a 31-28 Tide advantage. Taking over with just over two minutes remaining, Watson delivered his finest moment.
In 2017, for the first time in the game’s brief history, two schools from the same conference squared off when the Tide defeated Georgia 26-2, in an overtime thriller. Alabama didn’t win or compete in the SEC Championship Game, but the Crimson Tide were nonetheless invited to the CFP for a fourth time. Georgia, which won the SEC title, made its first appearance. The Bulldogs thought they had the game won until Tua Tagovailoa stepped in and led the Crimson Tide roaring back.
Last season, Clemson delivered the biggest beatdown yet in the CFP National Championship. The Tigers were underdogs to Alabama, but they came up big again and again on third down to beat the Crimson Tide 44-16. Clemson beat Notre Dame in the semifinal 30-3, making this team one of the best in the brief history of this event.
Most All-Time Wins at CFP National Championship
Led by Nick Saban, Alabama has been a dynasty and is the only team to appear in all five CFP tournaments. The Crimson Tide have reached the championship game in each of the last four years and won two titles.
The ACC, Pac-12 and Big Ten have sent only one representative to the CFP title game and Clemson is the only other team to make multiple appearances. With the balance of power in the hands of just a few teams, it could be a few more years before that trend is broken.
Only the Big 12 has yet to make an appearance in the CFP title game of the Power Five conferences, though the league had its chances. Oklahoma reached the playoff in the 2015 and 2017 seasons only to fall in the semifinals.
2019-20 College Bowl Games Betting Schedule
||LOCATION / TIME
|College Football Playoff
||Atlanta, GA / 4 PM
||No. 1 LSU vs. No. 4 Oklahoma
||Glendale, AZ / 8 PM
||No. 2 Ohio State vs. No. 3 Clemson
||CFP National Championship
||New Orleans, LA / 8 PM
||No. 1 LSU vs. No. 3 Clemson
|Selection Committee Bowl Games
||Arlington, TX / Noon
||No. 10 Penn State vs. No. 17 Memphis
||Miami Gardens, FL / 8 PM
||No. 9 Florida vs. No. 24 Virginia
||Pasadena, CA / 5 PM
||No. 6 Oregon vs. No. 8 Wisconsin
||New Orleans, LA / 8:45 PM
||No. 5 Georgia vs. No. 7 Baylor
|Other Bowl Games
||Nassau, Bahamas / 2 PM
||Buffalo vs. Charlotte
||Frisco, TX / 7:30 PM
||Kent State vs. Utah State
||Atlanta, GA / 12:00 PM
||Alcorn State vs. North Carolina A&T
||New Mexico Bowl
||Albuquerque, NM / 2 PM
||Central Michigan vs. San Diego State
||Orlando, FL / 2:30 PM
||Liberty vs. Georgia Southern
||Boca Raton Bowl
||Boca Raton, FL / 3:30 PM
||FAU vs. SMU
||Montgomery, AL / 5:30 PM
||Arkansas State vs. Florida International
||Las Vegas Bowl
||Las Vegas, NV / 7:30 PM
||No. 19 Boise State vs. Washington
||New Orleans Bowl
||New Orleans, LA / 9 PM
||No. 20 Appalachian State vs. UAB
||Tampa, FL / 2:30 PM
||Marshall vs. UCF
||Honolulu, HI / 8 PM
||BYU vs. Hawai'i
||Shreveport, LA / 4 PM
||Louisiana Tech vs. Miami (Fla.)
||Quick Lane Bowl
||Detroit, MI / 8 PM
||Eastern Michigan vs. Pittsburgh
||Annapolis, MD / Noon
||North Carolina vs. Temple
||The Bronx, NY / 3:20 PM
||Michigan State vs. Wake Forest
||Houston, TX / 6:45 PM
||No. 25 Oklahoma State vs. Texas A&M
||San Diego, CA / TBA
||No. 16 Iowa vs. No. 22 Southern California
||Phoenix, AZ / 10:15 PM
||Air Force vs. Washington State
||Camping World Bowl
||Orlando, FL / Noon
||No. 15 Notre Dame vs. Iowa State
||First Responder Bowl
||University Park, TX / 12:30 PM
||Western Kentucky vs. Western Michigan
||Music City Bowl
||Nashville, TN / 4 PM
||Louisville vs. Mississippi State
||Santa Clara, CA / TBA
||California vs. Illinois
||Charlotte, NC / Noon
||Kentucky vs. Virginia Tech
||El Paso, TX / 2 PM
||Arizona State vs. Florida State
||Tucson, AZ / 4:30 PM
||Georgia State vs. Wyoming
||San Antonio, TX / 7:30 PM
||No. 11 Utah vs. Texas
||Mephis, TN / 3:45 PM
||Kansas State vs. Navy
||Tampa, FL / 1 PM
||No. 12 Auburn vs. No. 18 Minnesota
||Orlando, FL / 1 PM
||No. 13 Alabama vs. No. 14 Michigan
||Birmingham, AL / 3 PM
||No. 21 Cincinnati vs. Boston College
||Jacksonville, FL / 7 PM
||Indiana vs. Tennessee
||Idaho Potato Bowl
||Boise, ID / 3:30 PM
||Nevada vs. Ohio
||Armed Forces Bowl
||Fort Worth, TX / 11:30 AM
||Southern Miss vs. Tulane
||Mobile, AL / 7:30 PM
||Louisiana-Lafayette vs. Miami (Ohio)
2019 NCAA Football Schedule
NCAA Football Teams
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