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2015 Cotton Bowl Betting Preview - Alabama Huge Favorite to Defeat Michigan State

The 2015 Goodyear Cotton Bowl takes place on Thursday, December 31, and features the Michigan State Spartans playing the Alabama Crimson Tide in the first round of the FBS College Football Playoff. The game at AT&T Stadium is scheduled to kick off at 8:00 PM ET, and will be televised on ESPN. Currently, Alabama is a strong favorite to win this game.

The Spartans are 12-1 SU and 5-7-1 ATS so far this season. Six of their games have gone OVER the line, with the other seven going UNDER. They are coming off of a 16-13 win over Iowa, where they were -3 point favorites, resulting in a PUSH. The total went UNDER the 50 point line set by sport gambling oddsmakers in that matchup.

The Crimson Tide are 12-1 SU and 7-6 ATS overall this year. Five of their games have gone OVER the line, with the other eight going UNDER. They are coming off of a 29-15 win over Florida in the SEC Championship game, where they failed to cover the spread as -16 ½ point favorites. The total went OVER the 38 point line set by the sports betting experts in that one.

Michigan State is 4-0 ATS in bowl games, and 4-0-1 ATS in December. They are 3-0-1 ATS overall recently, and 4-1-1 ATS after a SU win. They are 33-16-2 ATS against teams with a winning record, and 0-4 ATS in non-conference matchups. The total has gone OVER in 5 of their last 6 bowl games, and OVER in 8 of their last 10 non-conference games. The total has gone OVER in 6 of their last 8 games at a neutral site, and OVER in 8 of their last 11 on fieldturf.

Alabama is 6-1 ATS against teams with a winning record, and 5-1 ATS against Big Ten teams. They are 4-1 ATS coming off of a SU win, and 4-1 ATS overall recently. They are 2-10-1 ATS in non-conference play. The total has gone OVER in all 6 of their recent games on Thursday, and OVER in all 4 of their games in December. The total has gone OVER in 8 of their last 9 bowl games, and OVER in 4 of their last 5 against the Big Ten. The total has gone OVER in 16 of their last 21 at a neutral site, and UNDER in 7 of their last 10 overall.

These teams last met in January 2011, when Alabama won 49-7, and covered the spread as -7 ½ point favorites. The total went OVER the 51 point line set by the sportsbook for that game.

For Thursday's Cotton Bowl, Alabama is a -10 point favorite in the gambling odds to win. The over/under is set at 46 points. On the moneyline, the Spartans are a +325, while the Crimson Tide are listed at -400.