No. 9 Alabama (10-2) meets No. 17 Michigan (9-3) meets at the Vrbo One Citrus Bowl on January 1. Game schedule is scheduled for 1 p.m. ET at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Florida. The game will be televised nationwide by ABC.
Alabama is not in an important bowl for the first time since 2010 under coach Nick Saban. Crimson Tide will also be without star quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, but backup quarterback Mac Jones will have the majority of future first-round elections, including Jerry Jeudy, at his disposal. Alabama ranked second in the FBS with 48.3 points per game this season.
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Michigan is trying to win 10 games for the fourth time in five seasons with fifth-year coach Jim Harbaugh. The Wolverines have 1-3 in bowl games under Harbaugh, and that includes two losses to SEC schools. Shea Patterson also has a talented group of receivers; Michigan also has a complete list for this bowl game.
It's a classic SEC vs. clash. Big Bowl, and those always have a little extra heat. The coaching showdown between Saban and Harbaugh only adds to that.
Here you will find everything you need to know about bets in Alabama vs. Michigan, including updated fees, trends and our prediction for the Citrus Bowl.
Alabama vs. fees. Michigan for Citrus Bowl 2020
- Spread: Alabama -7
- Total points: 58.5
- Money Line: Alabama -250, Michigan +210
Alabama is a seven-point favorite according to Sports Insider. The line has remained there before the start.
Alabama vs Michigan series of all time
The teams have divided four meetings, three of which occurred in bowl clashes. Tom Brady led the Wolverines to a 35-34 overtime victory in the Orange Bowl on January 1, 2000. Alabama won the last 41-14 match at the 2012 season opening at Jerry World.
Three trends to know
– Crimson Tide was favored in all games this season and was 6-6 against the spread. They had 0-2 against the spread and 0-2 in a row in the two games where they were favored by 10 points or less.
– Alabama is 11-5 and 8-8 against the spread in the postseason games under Saban since 2007.
– The coup in Harbaugh remains the same: the Wolverines are 0-9 directly as a loser since he took over in 2015. The Wolverines are 3-6 against the spread in that situation.
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Three things to look at
Michigan perimeter defense
The Wolverines were unable to handle the state of Ohio on the perimeter at the end of the regular season. Justin Fields passed for 302 yards, four touchdowns and averaged 12.1 yards per attempt. Jones has an even better group of receivers led by Jeudy, who averages 13.5 yards per reception, Henry Ruggs III (18.9), DeVonta Smith (18.5) and Jaylen Waddle (17.3), who combined for 35 touchdown receptions this season. If Michigan's defenders are not at their best, then it will be a long game.
The Michigan running game
Michigan offensive coordinator Josh Gattis was an Alabama assistant this season. It will be interesting to see what wrinkles it puts in the running game, which must be effective for the Wolverines to have a chance. Michigan averaged 3.2 yards per race or less in its losses to Penn State, Ohio State and Wisconsin this season. If the combination of Zach Charbonnet and Hassan Haskins can succeed against an Alabama defense that allowed 3.8 yards per carry this season, then the Wolverines could stay.
What future first-round talents will shine in this game for Alabama? It is a last chance for some players, even some on the defensive side, to show up. For Michigan, players like Josh Uche, who has declared himself for the NFL Draft, and a talented group of receivers led by Nico Collins and Donovan Peoples-Jones could make a good impression with the headhunters here. This is the best game outside of New Year's Day 6 due to the talent of both sides.
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Statistics that matter
This is a last chance for Shea Patterson to win the big game. Between stops at Ole Miss and Michigan, he has lost 12 starts. He had 15 touchdowns and 17 interceptions in those games, and his completion percentage fell below 60 percent in 10 of those 12 starts. It will have to be better than that, like the first half against Ohio State, for Michigan to make this a four-quarter game. Remember, Patterson was 4 of 24 in the second half against the Buckeyes.
Prediction Alabama vs. Michigan
The last time Alabama was in this situation, their motivation was questioned and they beat No. 7 Michigan State 49-7 in the Capital One Bowl in a one-sided beating. Expect Michigan to play loose, but the margin of error is no different than what it had in the state of Ohio. Unless Patterson is as perfect as possible, the Wolverines will have no chance. Najee Harris finally gets on the defensive of the Wolverines and Alabama moves away in the second half.
Alabama 41, Michigan 24