LSU’s Odds to Repeat as National Champions Have Steadily Faded From +750 to +1100 Since April

LSU receiver Ja'Marr Chase

LSU is looking to become the first school to win back-to-back national championships in the CFP era. Photo by @247Sports (Twitter).
  • The defending national champions have seen their championship odds drop during the offseason
  • Can LSU become the first team in the CFP era to win back-to-back titles?
  • A Tiger roster in transition will face an uphill climb this season

LSU’s odds to repeat as national champions have taken a dip. Back in April, the Tigers were as short as +750 – fourth-best in the country. Today, their odds to win the College Football Playoff are +1075 on average and they have fallen to fifth-favorite behind Georgia.

Does the latest price tag offer a sign of things to come or does it make them a value bet?

2021 CFP National Championship Odds

Team Odds
Clemson +225
Ohio State +325
Alabama +425
Georgia +950
LSU +1075
Florida +1300
Oklahoma +2500
Auburn +3250
Penn State +3250
Oregon +3500

Odds as of June 17, 2020.

One key to successful betting is knowing when not to wager. This may look tempting: the national champions paying a higher price than expected. But LSU is a team to avoid for three key reasons.

LSU Sets NFL Record with Five First-Round Picks

According to ESPN, LSU ranks 127th out of the 130 FBS teams in returning production at only 42%. The issue with the Tigers isn’t only that there is large roster turnover, it’s the quality of the players that are no longer in Baton Rouge. Expecting them to compete in the tough SEC with the number of major changes is unrealistic.

In the 2020 NFL draft, Heisman Trophy-winner Joe Burrow was the 1st-overall pick to the Cincinnati Bengals, LB K’Lavon Chaisson went to Jacksonville at number 20, two picks later was WR Justin Jefferson going to Minnesota, followed by LB Patrick Queen to Baltimore 28th overall, and finally RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire to Kansas City to close the first round.

For those keeping track at home that was the best player in all of college football, the star running back, the second-best wide receiver, and the top-two linebackers.

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SEC Schedule Provides Major Hurdles

The SEC is a top-heavy conference with many contenders for the College Football Playoff. Five of the top-10 CFP favorites are from the SEC.  Alabama has the best odds in the conference, followed by Georgia, LSU, Florida, and Auburn.

The reality of the situation is only one of these teams is likely to make the playoff and, even if a second is invited, they would likely be the loser of the conference championship game. That means only one of Alabama, LSU, and Auburn will receive an invite out of the SEC West, and I don’t like the Tigers’ chances in that scenario.

What Can We Expect From Ed Orgeron?

Ed Orgeron proved he’s a national championship caliber coach last season, but what does that really mean? He led the Tigers to a 15-0 record last year but had a combined seven losses the two years prior.

Are you convinced he’s a top-shelf coach or did he simply ride an incredible run from a Heisman-winner and 1st-overall NFL pick en route to a title?

The three teams ahead of LSU in the title odds are Clemson, Ohio State, and Alabama. Without the advantage of a roster full of first-round talent like he had last year, do you have confidence Orgeron could win a coaching battle with Dabo Swinney, Ryan Day, or Nick Saban?

I’d have “Coach O” ranked fourth on that list heading into this season.

Fade The Tigers And Likely The Entire SEC

I like Alabama with Mac Jones at quarterback but I still see this season coming down to a battle between the two best quarterbacks in Trevor Lawrence from Clemson and Justin Fields from Ohio State.

Do your research and decide who you think offers the best value; but whatever you do, fade the defending national champions.

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