2024 College Football National Championship Futures Odds with Expert Betting Predictions

by Doc's Sports

Wednesday, Jan 10, 2024
Even though the dust hasn't even begun to settle on Michigan's National Championship win, oddsmakers are looking forward to next season's college football season. This was the final season of the four-team playoff. And while it was an improvement over the original BCS format, this system was still quite flawed, as Florida State can attest to.

Unfortunately for the Seminoles and their fans, the expansion is coming one year too late. The 2024 season will be the debut of the 12-team playoff format. The criteria for selecting teams is still being ironed out, but what is expected is to have five conference champions and then seven at-large bids. With the virtual disintegration of the Pac-12, the guaranteed bids for conference champions are being reduced from six to five teams. Which conferences are selected will be determined by ranking the conferences with a system devised by the playoff committee.

The other monumental change will be the radical additions to two Power 5 conferences. The Big Ten adds four teams from the former Pac-12: Oregon, UCLA, USC, and Washington. Those who want a rematch from last night's National Championship Game only have to wait until October 5 when the Wolverines travel to Seattle to play the Huskies. The SEC has been raiding the Big 12 of teams for years, and they finally got the two crown jewels of Oklahoma and Texas to join. As the saying goes, "The rich get richer and the poor get poorer."

While it looks as though the possibility of winning a college football National Championship is wider open, what is happening, in reality, is the season and playoffs are between the two mega conferences. For example, of the 12 teams with the lowest odds to win the CFP, only three teams, Clemson, Florida State, and Notre Dame, reside outside the Megas.

This doesn't mean that a surprise Miami or Arizona can't sneak in and create havoc, but the teams outside the Megas already have the deck stacked against them. Never mind about the SMUs and James Madisons of the world.

I'll admit, after watching the NCAA fumble college sports for decades, I'm slightly prejudiced against them. For the record, I greatly anticipate the expanded playoffs, but I have little faith in the NCAA running it correctly.

Doc’s Sports offers college football expert picks for every game on our college football predictions page.

Georgia +450: Surprisingly, one of the teams that will benefit from the playoff expansion is the Bulldogs. The two-time defending National Champions were on a 29-game win streak and stumbled against Alabama in the SEC Championship Game by a field goal. The voters deemed that horrible and put two one-loss teams in the playoffs instead of Georgia. The Bulldogs return QB Carson Beck, a veteran offensive line, the #1 recruiting class in the nation, and immediate impact transfers from the portal. They have a demanding schedule and may not be undefeated come playoff time, but I expect them to be playing for all the marbles come next January.

Alabama +600: Bama head coach Nick Saban said, "We're not enjoying life after getting beat." Translation: His players are most definitely not enjoying this off-season. After a rocky start, the Crimson Tide righted the ship and were a 4th-and-goal away from playing for their 16th National Championship. They shouldn't have those waves on offense with QB Jalen Milroe entrenched as the starter and two explosive running backs who look to break the 1,000-yard barrier for the first time since Brian Robinson's 1,343 yards in 2021.

Ohio State +800: It's unusual to find a coach on the hot seat whose team has the third-best odds to win the CFP, but that's precisely where Buckeye head coach Ryan Day is. With Michigan's victory on Monday night, that seat got even hotter. While the Buckeyes lost their starting QB in the portal, they replaced him with Kansas State's signal caller Will Howard. They also made another huge splash with the recent signing of Ole Miss's running back Quinshon Judkins. This gives them a helluva 1-2 punch in the backfield if TreVeyon Henderson returns for another year.

Texas +900: Texas moves to the SEC in 2024, which could be either a blessing or a curse. Their schedule gets much more demanding, but they proved this season they could still overcome a weaker slate to make the playoffs. With QB Quinn Ewers expected back, and a dominating offensive line, the Longhorns shouldn't have to sweat Selection Sunday like they did this season.

Michigan +1000: If I were a gambling man (and I am), I would bet Michigan gets stripped of its recent triumph. They have a great foundation, but too many questions need to be answered: Who will be the head coach? Does QB JJ McCarthy return? How many players will enter the draft now that they have a college ring?

Ole Miss +1600: Even though the Rebels are losing their star running back, Quinshon Judkins, head coach Lane Kiffin has one of the nation's most experienced QBs in Jaxson Dart and a talented cadre of receivers. Ole Miss is retooling its defense almost exclusively from the portal, nabbing two high-impact players from its fellow SEC brothers. With the playoffs expanding, the Rebels will be a tough out for whomever they play.

Here are some other teams who have a realistic chance of making the playoffs:

Oregon +1100

LSU +1400

Florida State +1800

Clemson +2000

Penn State +2000

Notre Dame +2500

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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