Michigan vs Alabama Line Opens Early with Tide -10 Point Spread Favorite: It’s been three weeks since Alabama players hoisted the crystal football as BCS champions, and already oddsmakers at some sports shops are looking ahead to the 2012 season. Fans of the Crimson Tide and Michigan Wolverines are looking ahead too; eagerly anticipating their early season (Sept. 1) head-to-head matchup in the “Cowboys Stadium Kickoff Classic” at Arlington, Texas. Oddsmakers, always happy to facilitate betting demands, have lined the Crimson Tide as early -10 point spread College Football Odds favorites.
It’s a little early to know exactly how many returning players will dot the depth charts, but both schools anticipate a majority of last years starters to return. Alabama juniors, running back Trent Richardson, linebacker Dont’a Hightower and cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick declared early for the 2012 NFL Draft, but returning are 2011 Outland Trophy Award-winning left tackle Barrett Jones, right tackle D.J. Fluker and safety Robert Lester are returning for their senior seasons. For Alabama to return to the BCS Championship game next season they need to find five starters on offense and four on defense.
Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson flirted with the NFL when he filed papers for draft evaluation but has since decided to return. With Robinson in the fold, the Wolverines return a loaded squad from their Sugar Bowl championship team.
While Michigan vs. Alabama is the highest profile game for 2012 Week 1, oddsmakers have posted early odds on a few other games that should draw betting interest. The weekend begins on Friday, August 31 with Boise State visiting Michigan State. The Broncos lost heavily to graduation including quarterback Kellen Moore. Oddsmakers anticipate a falloff from BSU and have lined the team +9 point underdogs in this one.
Auburn is a 4-chalk underdog to Clemson in the 2012 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Classic on Sept. 1 and Nebraska is lined as 11-point favorite in their game with Southern Mississippi in Lincoln. West Virginia hosts Marshall on Week 1 and is lined a heavy 24-chalk favorite.
Cowboy Classic prediction: If oddsmakers line games early we can make early predictions. The Crimson Tide will re-load and pick up a two touchdown victory against the Wolverines in this one. My Pick – Alabama -10.
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