There is only one football game this holiday weekend that is drawing national attention, and it’s not being played in the NFL.
It’s the Iron Bowl. It’s No. 1 Alabama at No. 6 Auburn. And it’s scheduled for kickoff on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET, where the No. 1 team in the country is favored by five points as they square off against the Tigers at Jordan-Hare Stadium.
The Crimson Tide have won the last three Iron Bowls, but none of them was more important than this one. The rivalry, which started in 1893, got its name from Birmingham, Alabama’s historic role in the steel industry.
If you played VGB’s college football Week 12 parlay pick, you have a winning ticket. Virginia gave Miami all it could handle and covered the spread, even though the Cavaliers lost. Kansas covered against Oklahoma as well, even though the point spread hovered between 38 and 39 points up to game time. The winning ticket returned $66.13 for a $25 parlay bet.
Let’s try and make it two in a row with another two-team parlay. These rivalry games are huge this week (odds provided by bovada.lv). Take Auburn (+5) over Alabama and Ohio State (-12.5) over Michigan for $25. If both teams beat the spread, the payoff is $66.13. If either team loses against the spread, the ticket is void.
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Alabama Has Won Last Three Iron Bowls
No. 1 Alabama at No. 6 Auburn — This game is a whole lot more than just bragging rights for the state of Alabama. If Alabama wins this one, the playoff picture is clear. If Auburn wins, well … let the chaos begin. Many teams would then starting arguing for one of the four coveted spots.
The winner of the Iron Bowl advances to the Southeastern Conference final on Dec. 2 in Atlanta against the Georgia Bulldogs.
Alabama (11-0) has played just three road games this season. Their closest games of the year were both on the road — against Texas A&M and Mississippi State. The Crimson Tide are 5-6 against the spread this season, and 1-2 ATS on the road.
This is the third time this year Auburn has not been favored. The last time that happened, the Tigers (9-2) were a 2.5-point underdog against Georgia. They crushed the former No. 1 team 40-17. Auburn is 4-6-1 against the spread this season, and 2-4 ATS at home.
While this will be their biggest test of the season, Auburn has not lost all year at home.
Buckeyes Must Win Out To Make Playoffs
No. 9 Ohio State at Michigan — To say these two schools don’t like each other is putting it mildly.
The school from Ohio is 9-2, and must run the table to have a shot at the national playoffs. The school from Michigan is 8-3, and would like nothing better than to spoil the Buckeyes’ party.
Michigan’s offense is in bad shape. In their three losses, they managed just 33 points. They have been underdogs twice this year, and both times they lost big. Don’t plan on the Buckeyes having any mercy on them.
Ohio State is 5-6 against the spread this season, but they’re 3-1 ATS on the road. J.T. Barrett and company can score in bunches. The Buckeyes have won the last 14 of 16 meetings between these two schools and they need a statement win to draw the attention of the rankings committee.
VGB’s Top 10 College Football Teams
Every team in VGB’s Top 10 won last weekend. Some teams had tough conferences games, others were featured in Cupcake Saturday. (Current odds, provided by bovada.lv, to win the national championship listed after team record.)