Alabama vs Cincinnati Prediction, Cotton Bowl, CFP Semifinal Preview

Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports

Alabama vs Cincinnati Prediction, Cotton Bowl, CFP Semifinal Preview

College Football Predictions

Alabama vs Cincinnati Prediction, Cotton Bowl, CFP Semifinal Preview

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Alabama vs Cincinnati: Goodyear Cotton Bowl prediction, College Football Playoff semifinal game preview, how to watch 


Alabama vs Cincinnati: Goodyear Cotton Bowl, College Football Playoff Semifinal How To Watch

Date: Friday, December 31
Game Time: 3:30 ET
Venue: AT&T Stadium, Arlington, TX
How To Watch: ESPN, Live stream on ESPN+
Record: Alabama (12-1), Cincinnati (13-0)
CFN Predictions | Bowl Schedule
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Alabama vs Cincinnati Cotton Bowl, College Football Playoff Preview

Okay, Group of Five. You had what it took to get into the club, but can you do anything with it? Out of the 32 College Football Playoff slots over the last eight years, Cincinnati is the first team outside of the Power Five to have a shot at winning the national title in the mini-tournament.

– The American Athletic Conference champion did what a Group of Five program needed to do. It went unbeaten, it had a splashy win – it was the only team to beat Notre Dame – and it got the job done with a conference championship.

It caught a break that there wasn’t a fourth option, but one win over the defending national champion could blow the lid off of any and all negative narratives.

This wasn’t an easy ride for Alabama. It had to replace the New England Patriot starting quarterback (Mac Jones), the Pittsburgh Steeler starting running back (Najee Harris), a Heisman-winning wide receiver (DeVonta Smith), the even better receiver (Jaylen Waddle), and a whole slew of other key parts.

And it’s still the 1 seed in the College Football Playoff.

– Bama was operating without a net after losing to Texas A&M in early October. It rolled through seven straight wins including the dominant 41-24 SEC Championship victory to get here. Consistency wasn’t a problem, there were issues on both lines, and the team needed to be bailed out time and again. More on that in a moment.

– Alabama is the lone College Football Playoff fixture in this. Georgia has been in once, but this makes it seven times in eight chances for the Tide. Win this, and the program will be one step away from its fourth CFP national title and Nick Saban’s eighth national championship.

Cincinnati is 0-3 all-time in New Year’s Six-caliber bowls – the most recent being last season’s 24-21 loss to Georgia in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl.

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