The 2021 Orange Bowl will take place on Friday, December 31 between Michigan (2) and Georgia (3) as part of the 2021-22 CFB National Semifinals.
Both teams enter the game at 12-1. The Michigan Wolverines blew past the Iowa Hawkeyes, 42-3, to win the Big Ten Championship Game and extend their winning streak to five games.
The Georgia Bulldogs, on the other hand, suffered their first loss of the season in the SEC Championship Game to Alabama with a 41-24 defeat. Even so, Georgia impressed the CFB playoff committee enough to survive among the final four teams and reach the postseason.
Who will prevail in the big game at the Orange Bowl? Read on for our top 2021 Orange Bowl betting picks and Michigan vs Georgia predictions.
Michigan vs Georgia Prediction: 2021 Orange Bowl
In addition to finishing with the same record, both teams have much in common despite playing in different conferences. Both squads flourished in the face of stiff competition, as Georgia had the second-strongest strength of schedule this season while Michigan had the fourth-strongest.
Offensively, both clubs also appear to be clones of each other. The Bulldogs average 39.4 points per game and the Wolverines average 37.7 per game. Both coaches love to run the ball as well, ranking near the top in highest percentage of running plays.
Both units are also outstanding defensively. Georgia allowed the fewest points per game in the nation at 9.5, while Michigan wasn’t far behind at 16.1.
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Both defenses excel at stopping the run. Georgia is allowing just 2.7 yards per carry, while Michigan is ceding 3.5.
Accordingly, both of these run-heavy offenses are likely to struggle in what should be a low-scoring game, which is reflected in the totals on our NCAAF gameday odds.
- Check out our 2021 Cotton Bowl Predictions & Picks
In a defensive tug of war between two equally strong teams, I have a hard time seeing why Georgia should be a heavy favorite. Michigan’s offense is on fire after scoring at least 42 points in three straight games and has shown an ability to break through strong defenses.
Take Michigan to win a close, hard-fought contest.
Orange Bowl Prediction: Michigan 24, Georgia 21
Orange Bowl Best Bets for Michigan vs Georgia
Best Bet: Michigan +8 (-125) at Caesars (Would bet up to +8)
Wager: 0.5 Units
Georgia has blown out many formidable teams this season but outside of Alabama, Michigan will be their toughest test yet.
The Bulldogs should be favored based on their body of work, but they should not be favored by more than a touchdown. This should be a low-scoring game that is decided by a touchdown or less.
- Check out our 2021 Orange Bowl Prop Bets
I like Michigan to cover the spread and potentially win. For the moment, I’m going to wait to place my bet as I suspect the Wolverines will close as 9-10-point underdogs.
Best Bet: Michigan Moneyline (+240) at Caesars (Would bet up to +225)
Wager: 0.5 Units
For the first time this season, Georgia looks vulnerable. Up until the SEC Championship Game they beat all of their opponents (besides Clemson) by 17 or more points. Then they were torn to shreds by Alabama.
If Michigan wins, it will likely be by controlling the ball with the run game and playing terrific defense.
I recommend taking a flier on Michigan’s moneyline, but wait until closer to kickoff to get the best price.
Want to make a bet on Michigan to win the 2022 CFB National Championship?
Best Bet: Michigan To Win 2022 CFB National Championship (+800) at Caesars
Wager: 0.5 Units
I see value in Michigan’s moneyline, but I see even more value in betting on them winning or losing in specific National Championship matches and winning the National Championship.
At +800 odds, Michigan has a breakeven price of 11.1% of winning the national title. Their chances aren’t as good as Alabama or Georgia, but they’re still in contention.
In fact, I simulated the College Football Playoff 100,000 times, and the Wolverines won the National Championship in 14.5% of my simulations.
That is why I recommend using them on this National Championship result wager.