The College Football Playoff semifinals will get started on Friday afternoon in the Cotton Bowl when the top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide match up against the No. 4 Cincinnati Bearcats from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Michigan-Georgia will be competing with your end of evening festivities, but Alabama-Cincinnati thankfully takes place at a more reasonable hour on the final day of the 2021 calendar.
Alabama (12-1, 7-1 SEC) needed to run the table following a loss to the Texas A&M Aggies in October, and they won seven straight games including an extremely impressive victory over the Georgia Bulldogs in the conference title game. The defending national champions will participate in their seventh College Football Playoff out of its eight years of existence. The Crimson Tide are among the best nationally on both sides of the ball, and quarterback Bryce Young took home this year’s Heisman Trophy.
Cincinnati (13-0, 8-0 AAC) has a chance to be the ultimate underdog story for college football as the first team outside of a Power 5 conference to crack the CFP. The Bearcats did what they needed to do all season long with their big break coming in a victory over the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Fans can argue whether Cincinnati belongs based on schedule, but the Bearcats have the talent to hang with the best in the country, and they rank inside the top five in yards per play on both sides of the ball heading into the New Year’s Eve matchup.
Cotton Bowl info: Alabama vs. Cincinnati
Date: Friday, December 31st
Kick off time: 3:30 p.m. ET
TV channel: ESPN
Current line on DraftKings Sportsbook: Alabama -13.5