Nick Saban and the Alabama Crimson Tide have been a mainstay in national title conversations over the course of his 15-year tenure. But in 2021, Las Vegas oddsmakers don’t even rank Alabama as the No. 1 team in the SEC.
Instead, through eight weeks of the college football season, Kirby Smart and the No. 1-ranked, undefeated Georgia Bulldogs continue to hold their ground as the national title favorites. Georgia has found itself inhabiting the No. 1 spot in national title odds ever since Alabama’s upset loss to Texas A&M, but the Crimson Tide are a close second.
Rounding out the top four are Ohio State and Oklahoma, with Cincinnati — a program hoping to become the first group of five school to make the College Football Playoff — coming in at fifth.
Ahead of Week 9, here’s a look at the odds to win the 2021-22 College Football Playoff national title game, courtesy of VegasInsider.
College Football Playoff national title odds
Georgia Bulldogs (+120)
Georgia could very well be in the No. 2 spot if not for Alabama’s crushing loss to Texas A&M on a game-winning field goal. Still, through eight weeks, Smart and the Bulldogs have earned the right to be the favorite for the national title, considering their stifling defense, which allows just 208.3 yards per game.
Alabama Crimson Tide (+250)
Saban and Alabama could very well give Georgia a run for its money, and barring a unforeseen upsets, Alabama will get a chance to dethrone Georgia in the SEC Championship game. It seems unlikely, if not impossible, for Alabama to lose another game; however, if it does, it will likely forfeit any national title hopes.
Ohio State Buckeyes (+600)
Ohio State projects as the second-best one-loss team, and its national title odds reflect that, as the Buckeyes come in just behind one-loss Alabama. If Ohio State can cruise through the Big Ten, it has a chance to do damage in the College Football Playoff.
Oklahoma Sooners (+1200)
It hasn’t always been pretty — in fact, it’s rarely been pretty — but Oklahoma is still unbeaten, despite multiple close calls. Lincoln Riley had to make the tough decision to bench preseason Heisman Trophy favorite Spencer Rattler for true freshman Caleb Williams, and in the process, he’s resurrected the Sooners’ offense. If Oklahoma makes a run at the national title, their run will be in the hands of Williams.
Cincinnati Bearcats (+2500)
In order for Cincinnati to make a run at a national title, they have to make the College Football Playoff; in most scenarios, a perfect record will do that. But in the case of group of five Cincinnati, which ranks No. 2 in the AP poll, it’s far from a guarantee. The Bearcats have five games remaining, including just one against a ranked opponent in No. 19 SMU. When the committee releases its first College Football Playoff rankings next week, Cincinnati’s chances at even competing for the national title could become a lot clearer.
Michigan Wolverines (+3500)
Oregon Ducks (+5000)
Michigan State Spartans (+5000)
Iowa Hawkeyes (+6600)
Notre Dame Fighting Irish (+8000)