TCU vs Georgia Prediction, Odds & Picks (CFP National Championship): Bulldogs bid to go back-to-back
After yet another exciting college football season, just one game remains. Tonight, the #3 TCU Horned Frogs will meet the #1 Georgia Bulldogs in the College Football National Championship game at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California (7:30 pm ET/4:30 pm local time, ESPN).
The Horned Frogs are this college football season’s feel-good story, but they proved their credentials as a potential championship team by outlasting favored Michigan 51-45 in their semifinal showdown.
TCU, led by Heisman Trophy runner-up Max Duggan, jumped out on top early and never trailed, and they held on for the win after a wild second half at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.
To complete a dream season with a national title, they must take down the reigning national champions, who survived Ohio State 42-41 to set up their shot at becoming the first team to repeat in the CFP era.
While TCU had to survive Michigan’s second-half comeback, Georgia had to rally in the second half against Ohio State in Atlanta, overcoming a 38-24 deficit in the fourth quarter.
After two classic semifinals, will we have a classic championship clash? Read on for our TCU vs Georgia prediction, as well as our 2023 CFP National Championship picks and analysis.
TCU vs Georgia Odds
Game odds are via FanDuel as of Monday, January 9, 2023, at 2:55 am ET. This article may also include odds from our other recommended legal sports betting sites.
- TCU +13.5 (-110)
- Georgia -13.5 (-110)
- Over 63.5 (-105)
- Under 63.5 (-115)
- TCU +375
- Georgia -500
Will Georgia Return to Its Dominant Ways Against TCU?
As inspiring as TCU’s run has been, many, including myself, expected them to fall short against Michigan.
The Wolverines had been fantastic defensively throughout the season and had beaten Ohio State, another CFP team, 45-23 in Columbus.
But the fearless Frogs came out strong and didn’t let up, and even when Michigan scored 16 straight points to go from down 41-22 to trailing 41-38 with 14 minutes left, they didn’t blink.
But can they put in that same kind of performance against Georgia?
The Bulldogs have dominated several opponents this season, as expected.
However, they have also been tested and have had some shaky moments, with the comeback against Ohio State and another fourth-quarter comeback at Missouri the biggest tests they have faced.
But Georgia being tested requires Georgia to beat themselves, and they very nearly did against Ohio State.
Kicker Jack Podlesny, who had made 23 of 26 field goals this season entering the CFP semis, missed two field goals.
And on the first play from scrimmage after the Buckeyes took a 14-7 lead early in the second quarter, Stetson Bennett was picked off, giving the Buckeyes a short field that they made the most of to take a 21-7 lead.
If the Bulldogs don’t beat themselves, that greatly narrows the margin for error that the opposition has.
TCU beat Michigan despite committing three turnovers and allowing 45 points and 528 yards. They certainly can’t afford to do the same against Georgia, or anything close to it.
TCU vs Georgia Prediction and Picks
TCU vs Georgia Prediction: Georgia to win
TCU vs Georgia Picks: TCU team total over 24.5 points (Best Value: FanDuel) & TCU/Georgia first half over 31.5 (Best Value: BetRivers)
Both of the CFP National Championship games that Georgia has been involved in have been decided late. Will this matchup follow the same script?
Five years ago, Georgia fell to Alabama in overtime in Atlanta, with the Tide walking it off on a Tua Tagovailoa touchdown toss to Devonta Smith.
Last year, they knocked off the Crimson Tide in a game that was undecided until Kelee Ringo’s pick-six in the final minute, which produced the final 33-18 scoreline.
I don’t think TCU will go quietly, and there are clearly flaws that can be exploited, as Ohio State showed in Atlanta. So, I plan to stay far, far away from the spread, even though the last four CFP title games have been decided by 28, 17, 28, and 15.
But I think there is a lot of value in backing the first half over, which is counter to what I would normally recommend for a championship game.
TCU vs Georgia Player Props
- Max Duggan to have 250+ passing yards (FanDuel)
Also, with my expectation that TCU will be playing from behind, the over on Duggan’s passing yards also has great value.
Duggan has eclipsed this number only twice in his last six games after eclipsing it in each of his first seven starts this season, but the Horned Frogs will be counting on his arm a bit more than in some of those games.