2023 Cotton Bowl Betting Odds, Predictions, Preview

The 2023 Cotton Bowl Classic concluded on Friday December 29, 2023 and bettors watched Missouri hold off Ohio State, 14-3 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

Recap all the 2024 Cotton Bowl Classic Betting Odds, Picks, Predictions and History below and be sure to check back for the 2024 installment.

Cotton Bowl Classic Betting Odds


  • Opening point spread: Ohio State -2.5
  • Opening moneyline: Ohio State -148/Missouri +120
  • Opening total: Over/Under 49 points scored
  • Time: 8 p.m. ET Friday, Dec. 29 (ESPN)

UPDATE 7 P.M. ET FRIDAY, DEC. 29: As is the case everywhere, this spread has been all over the map at BetMGM. On Dec. 3, Ohio State opened as 6.5-point chalk. Within a day, the number was all the way down to Buckeyes -2.5. By Dec. 5, it jumped the fence to Missouri -1, and Mizzou got to -3 by Dec. 7.

Over the past 10 days, the line made a run back to Ohio State. Slowly but surely, it got to Buckeyes -5 early this evening. Now, Ohio State is -4, while taking 56% of spread bets, while 51% of spread money is on Missouri. On the moneyline, it's 57% tickets/54% money on Missouri.

But because there was such a wide array of spread and moneyline numbers, those splits aren't necessarily indicative of the book's need. BetMGM trader Seamus Magee summarized where things stand.

"We need Mizzou to cover +4.5," Magee said.

The total opened at 51.5, bottomed out at 48.5 on Dec. 7 and 13, then slowly made its way to 52.5 by this evening. It's now at 51.5, with tickets and money 4/1 on the Over.

UPDATE 8:30 P.M. ET THURSDAY, DEC. 28: With kickoff 24 hours out, this line has moved back toward Ohio State at Caesars Sports. Over the past few days, the Buckeyes re-acquired their status as favorites.

"This has probably been the wildest line movement for a bowl game so far," Caesars lead college football trader Joey Feazel said. "We opened Ohio State -6.5, it went all the way to Missouri -3.5, now it's Ohio State -4."

That's because of all the transfer-portal/opt-out news. The latest is that Ohio State wideout Marvin Harrison Jr. might actually play Friday night.

"Harrison is practicing, flirting with playing. I don't think anybody believes that's happening," Feazel said, before addressing the game itself. "Missouri way outkicked its coverage [this season]. The Tigers want this one bad. To me, the Missouri side makes sense. But Ohio State is better on paper.

"We're pretty much split on this game. On the spread, we need Mizzou, and on the moneyline, we need Ohio State."

Caesars opened the total at 51.5 on Dec. 4 and within a few hours bottomed out at 48.5. Since then, the number toggled between 49 and 49.5 a couple times, and it's now 49.

UPDATE 3:30 P.M. ET WEDNESDAY, DEC. 20: The Buckeyes have a host of transfer-portal players already, including QB Kyle McCord. And several opt-outs are still possible, including stud wideout Marvin Harrison Jr.

So it should come as no surprise that the Cotton Bowl line made huge moves and jumped the fence early on. DrafKings Sportsbook opened Ohio State -6.5 on Dec. 3, and within a day, it was down to Buckeyes -2. By Dec. 5, it went to Missouri -1/-1.5, and the Tigers were -2.5 from Dec. 7-14.

By Tuesday, there was a little regression for Mizzou, to -1. The Buckeyes are seeing 58% of spread bets, while 52% of spread cash is on the Tigers.

DK's total opened at 51.5, bottomed out at 48.5 multiple times and is now at 49. Ticket count is 5/1 and money 2/1 on the Over.

UPDATE 4 P.M. ET MONDAY, DEC. 4: Ohio State (11-1 SU/6-5-1 ATS) has just one blemish on its record, in the regular-season finale. The Buckeyes fell to archrival Michigan 30-24 catching 3 points on the road.

With the Cotton Bowl up next, Ohio State has notable wins over Notre Dame and Penn State.

Missouri (10-2 SU/8-4 ATS) finished the regular season on a 5-1 SU and ATS run. And the only SU loss came at Georgia, in a game the Tigers were quite competitive in. Mizzou was within 24-21 early in the fourth quarter of a 30-21 Week 10 loss as a 14-point underdog.

The Tigers capped the season with a 48-14 road beatdown of Arkansas as 9-point favorites.

Ohio State opened and remains -2.5 at TwinSpires Sportsbook, with ticket count already 3/1-plus and money 4/1 on the Buckeyes.

"It's all Ohio State action so far. We're holding steady at 2.5, but we'll likely move to 3 if this continues," TwinSpires director of retail sports Zachary Lucas said.

The total nudged from 49 to 49.5, with 61% of early tickets/66% of early cash on the Over.

Click here for Vegas Insider senior reporter Patrick Everson's full College Football Bowl Odds: Spreads, Lines, Trends for Every Bowl Game.

Cotton Bowl Pick, Prediction

Action Network college football betting expert Collin Wilson offers this prediction:

Missouri head coach Eli Drinkwitz expected minimal transfer portal movement and NFL opt-outs in preparation for the Cotton Bowl.

Mizzou is one of the very few rosters that's seen nearly zero churn, retaining one of the most electric offenses in the nation with quarterback Brady Cook, running back Cody Schrader and wide receiver Luther Burden III.

While Missouri opened as a 6-point underdog, the steam has come hard and fast, moving the Tigers down to a favorite.

A large part of that is the roster of Ohio State, as quarterback Kyle McCord hit the portal, along with a number of large contributors to the one-loss team.

One of these teams is ecstatic with the chance to win a New Year's Six bowl, while the other is in a complete rebuild for 2024.

Pick: Missouri -2.5

For more college football picks, check out Action Network's College Football Bowl Confidence Pool Rankings: Collin Wilson’s Picks for All 2023 Bowl Games.

Cotton Bowl Classic Betting Resources

  • Date: Friday, December 29, 2023
  • TV-Time: ESPN, 8:00 p.m. ET
  • Venue: AT&T Stadium
  • Location: Arlington, Texas

Cotton Bowl History

The Cotton Bowl began in 1937 and the matchup currently features schools from the Big 12 Conference and the Southeastern Conference (SEC). The game takes place at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas as the previous venue for this contest was the Cotton Bowl in Dallas from 1937-2009.

This game was named the Mobil Cotton Bowl, Southwestern Bell Cotton Bowl Classic, and SBC Communications Cotton Bowl Classic, and the AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic prior to Goodyear obtaining sponsorship rights in 2015. 

In 2018, Clemson punished Notre Dame in another lopsided semifinal playoff game, 30-3. Favorites have won in 11 of the last 14 installments of this game, and the 'under' has now connected in four of the last five in this Arlington, Tex. bowl game, and the favorite is on a 4-0-1 ATS streak, too.

The most recent favorite to cash was Penn State, who took care of Memphis in 2019 as seven-point favorites, 53-39, marking the first time since USC in 1994 that a team has busted the 50-point mark in a Cotton Bowl.

In 2020, Oklahoma routed Florida by a 55-20 score as the favorite cashed, with the 'over' hitting, too. It was the second straight season a team went for 50 or more points in the Cotton Bowl.

We had a Group of Five team in the 2021 Cotton Bowl Classic, as Cincinnati was the No. 4 seed in the CFP. The Bearcats were no match for No. 1 seed Alabama, as the Crimson Tide rolled to a 27-6 rout.

Favorites won seven straight Cotton Bowls from 2015-21 before the underdogs bounced back the last two years. Tulane outlasted USC, 46-45 in 2022, followed by Missouri defeating Ohio State, 14-3 in 2023.

Cotton Bowl Betting Results

YearMatchupSpread, TotalsATS Result
2023Missouri 14 Ohio State 3Ohio State -4.5, 51.5Underdog, Under
2022Tulane 46 USC 45USC -1.5, 66Underdog, Over
2021Alabama 27 Cincinnati 6Alabama -12.5, 56.5Favorite, Under
2020Oklahoma 55 Florida 20Oklahoma -7.5, 65Favorite, Over
2019Penn State 53 Memphis 39Penn State -7, 60.5Favorite, Over
2018Clemson 30 Notre Dame 3Notre Dame -10.5, 58Favorite, Under
2017Ohio State 24 USC 7Ohio State -10, 65.5Favorite, Under
2016Wisconsin 24 Western Michigan 16Wisconsin -8, 54Push, Under
2015Alabama 38 Michigan State 0Alabama -10, 46Favorite, Under
2014Michigan State 42 Baylor 41Baylor -3, 68Underdog, Over
2013Missouri 41 Oklahoma State 31Oklahoma State -3, 62Underdog, Over
2012Texas A&M 41 Oklahoma 13Texas A&M -3, 72Favorite, Under
2011Arkansas 29 Kansas State 16Arkansas -9.5, 65Favorite, Under
2010Louisiana State 41 Texas A&M 24LSU -1.5, 49Favorite, Over
2009Mississippi 21 Oklahoma State 7Mississippi -3.5, 51Favorite, Under
2008Mississippi 47 Texas Tech 34Texas Tech -4, 66Underdog, Over
2007Missouri 38 Arkansas 7Missouri -3.5, 68.5Favorite, Under
2006Auburn 17 Nebraska 14Auburn -2.5, 47Favorite, Under
2005Alabama 13 Texas Tech 10Texas Tech -3, 47Underdog, Under
2004Tennessee 38 Texas A&M 7Texas A&M -5, 56Underdog, Under
2003Mississippi 31 Oklahoma State 28Mississippi -3, 59.5Push, Under
2002Texas 35 Louisiana State 20Texas -10.5, 46.5Favorite, Over
2001Oklahoma 10 Arkansas 3Oklahoma -12, 41.5Underdog, Under
2000Kansas State 35 Tennessee 21Kansas State -3.5, 50.5Favorite, Over
1999Arkansas 27 Texas 6Texas -5.5, 51Underdog, Under
1998Texas 38 Mississippi State 11Texas -6.5, 53Favorite, Under
1997UCLA 29 Texas A&M 23UCLA -12, 54Underdog, Under
1996Brigham Young 19 Kansas State 15Kansas State -3, 47Underdog, Under
1995Colorado 38 Oregon 6Colorado -6.5, 52Favorite, Under
1994Southern California 55 Texas Tech 14Southern California -6.5, 46.5Favorite, Over
1993Notre Dame 24 Texas A&M 21Notre Dame -8, 43Underdog, Over
1992Notre Dame 28 Texas A&M 3Notre Dame -4, 42Favorite, Under
1991Florida State 10 Texas A&M 2Florida State -5.5, 44.5Favorite, Under
1990Miami (FL) 46 Texas 3--
1989Tennessee 31 Arkansas 27--
1988UCLA 17 Arkansas 3--
1987Texas A&M 35 Notre Dame 10--
1986Ohio State 28 Texas A&M 12--
1985Texas A&M 36 Auburn 16--
1984Boston College 45 Houston 28--
1983Georgia 10 Texas 9--
1982Southern Methodist 7 Pittsburgh 3--
1981Texas 14 Alabama 12--
1980Alabama 30 Baylor 2--
1979Houston 17 Nebraska 14--
1978Notre Dame 35 Houston 34--
1977Notre Dame 38 Texas 10--
1976Houston 30 Maryland 21--
1975Arkansas 31 Georgia 10--
1974Penn State 41 Baylor 20--
1973Nebraska 19 Texas 3--
1972Texas 17 Alabama 13--
1971Penn State 30 Texas 6--
1970Notre Dame 24 Texas 11--
1969Texas 21 Notre Dame 17--
1968Texas 36 Tennessee 13--
1967Texas A&M 20 Alabama 16--
1966Georgia 24 Southern Methodist 9--
1965Louisiana State 14 Arkansas 7--
1964Arkansas 10 Nebraska 7--
1963Texas 28 Navy 6--
1962Louisiana State 13 Texas 0--
1961Texas 12 Mississippi 7--
1960Duke 7 Arkansas 6--
1959Syracuse 23 Texas 14--
1958Air Force 0 Texas Christian 0--
1957Navy 20 Rice 7--
1956Texas Christian 28 Syracuse 27--
1955Mississippi 14 Texas Christian 13--
1954Georgia Tech 14 Arkansas 6--
1953Rice 28 Alabama 6--
1952Texas 16 Tennessee 0--
1951Kentucky 20 Texas Christian 7--
1950Tennessee 20 Texas 14--
1949Rice 27 North Carolina 13--
1948Southern Methodist 21 Oregon 13--
1947Penn State 13 Southern Methodist 13--
1946Louisiana State 0 Arkansas 0--
1945Texas 40 Missouri27--
1944Oklahoma State 34 Texas Christian 0--
1943Texas 7 Randolph Field 7--
1942Texas 14 Georgia Tech 7--
1941Alabama 29 Texas A&M 21--
1940Texas A&M 13 Fordham 12--
1939Clemson 6 Boston College 3--
1938Saint Mary's (CA) 20 Texas Tech 13--
1937Rice 28 Colorado 14--
1936Texas Christian 16 Marquette 6--

College Football Bowl Betting Resources

College Football Playoff Odds: Lines, Spreads, Betting Trends for Semifinal Games

College Football Playoff odds for the semifinals are on the board and getting attention, even as debate rages over the four participants. Michigan nabbed the No. 1 ranking and a meeting with No. 4 Alabama in the Rose Bowl on New Year's Day. No. 2 Washington then faces No. 3 Texas in the Sugar Bowl.

Here’s everything you need to know about College Football Playoff odds for the semis: opening lines, spreads and betting trends for each game, as multiple oddsmakers provide insights on CFP odds and action. Check back regularly for updates and use our new ESPN BET bonus code VIBONUS to get the most out of your action.

College Football Playoff Odds for Semifinals

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