Happy New Year! College Football Playoffs Are Here!

Bring In The New Year With College Football Happy New Year to one and all. Let’s make it a good one. And let’s start if off right with some...

Bring In The New Year With College Football

Happy New Year to one and all. Let’s make it a good one.

And let’s start if off right with some excellent college football matchups as we begin to determine a national champion. We’ve sat through the lesser bowls with funny names; now, on to the biggies.

In Monday’s opening act, we go to the scenic Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, for the matchup between No. 2 Oklahoma (12-1) and No. 3 Georgia (12-1) on ESPN at 5 p.m. ET. The Sooners bring offense to the game with Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield at quarterback. He has been ill the last few days, but expect bags of fluid and a little extra adrenaline to carry him against a stout Georgia defense. Games like this can turn into shootouts and that would favor Oklahoma. The pick: Sooners 38, Bulldogs 31.

The evening show matches (for the third straight year in this mini-tournament) No. 1 Clemson (12-1) and No. 4 Alabama (11-1) in the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans at 8:45 p.m., also on ESPN. Imagine, Alabama didn’t even make it to the SEC Championship game, but here’s the Crimson Tide again. Clemson seems to be the most well-rounded of the final four and Bama is missing a couple of linebackers. The pick: Clemson 27, Alabama 23.

The winners meet Jan. 8 – one week hence – in Atlanta.
 
 
Post By: Larry Weisman, a longtime sportswriter for USA TODAY, blogs for Twistity.com. Follow him on Twitter @MrLarryWeisman

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