The Florida State Seminoles haven’t even been crowned the BCS National Champions for more than 48-hours, but that doesn’t stop the odds from already rolling out predicting who could be the champs next year. This being the last year of the BCS Bowl system, next year will bring on the inaugural college football playoff. And while there is still a lot to play out, such as which players will decide to head to the NFL, here are some bets that you can make as things stand now.
FSU starts the season at 5-2 odds. They will get returning Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston back, and also be coming off their first National Championship since 1999. The Seminoles will also be in the ACC, which they ran through this year. The biggest difference between this year and previous is that the Seminoles will have a huge target on their backs as the defending champs.
One team that the college playoff system looks to really favor is the Oregon Ducks. The Ducks have continually been a team that is right there in the conversation at the end of the year, but one loss on their record usually stops them from getting any shot at the championship. This may not be an issue next year, because all they’ll need to do is win the Pac-12. The Ducks are 5-1 favorites to win it all.
Also at 5-1 is Alabama. The Crimson Tide is coming off a disappointing season, which may be absurd for some to comprehend. But by missing out on the National Championship and then losing in their bowl game, the Tide will have a lot that they’ll want to prove next year. They too will benefit from the playoff system, as it’s unlikely that one loss late in the season would be enough to edge them out of getting some sort of redemption.
The team that beat Alabama in the Sugar Bowl was the Oklahoma Sooners. The Sooners are currently listed as 12-1. But they’ll have a tough road with teams like Baylor, Oklahoma State and Texas in the picture as well. Also at 12-1 is Ohio State, who went undefeated until losing in the Big Ten Championship game to Michigan State and then in the Orange Bowl to Clemson.
LSU, which got a commitment from the top recruit in the nation this past week, comes in at 20-1. Also at 20-1 are Auburn, Baylor and UCLA. Once it was announced that Bruins quarterback Brett Hundley was coming back for his junior season, that was a huge boost for the team that beat up on the Virginia Tech Hokies in the Sun Bowl this year.
The day that odds were released, Texas A&M was at 60-1. However, it was announced just a few hours later than Johnny Manziel had chosen an agent and would enter the NFL Draft. Keep an eye on how his departure changes the look at College Station.
And what about if you are looking for a long-shot pick that might look good to an outside observer? How about the Florida Gators? The Gators are currently at 75-1. However, remember what Auburn did this year. They went from zero wins in the SEC two years ago, to the National Championship this year. The Gators will come back from a disappointing year, but be looking to improve. They could benefit from a system where a one loss team gets into the championship playoff, if they can have a solid year in the SEC.
There are a bunch of hidden gems with the release of the odds for next season. And of course, as the offseason progresses, there will be many more changes to come.