The College Football Playoff began in 2014 and is a four-team postseason tournament for NCAA FBS schools. A playoff committee selects four schools to compete in semifinals with the winners meeting in the title game. All three of the games are played on neutral fields and the venues are rotated on an annual basis.
The 2020 College Football season was filled with uncertainty brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, yet we still managed to produce a College Football Playoff with four schools.
Those four teams selected by the committee were the same teams at the end, just in different order.
2020-21 College Playoff Matchups
Rose Bowl at AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas
Sugar Bowl at Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, Louisiana
National Championship at Hard Rock Stadium, Miami Gardens, Florida
College Football Playoff History Results & Notes
College Football Playoff Historical Notes
Ohio State, the No. 4 seed, won the inaugural College Football Playoff National Championship by defeating Alabama in the semifinals and Oregon in the title game.
The Buckeyes were listed as underdogs in both games, cashing money-line odds as high as 7/2 and 2/1 in the postseason affairs. The ‘over’ went 2-1 in the 2014 College Football Playoff.
Alabama bounced back in 2015 by knocking off Michigan State and Clemson to claim its fourth national championship in the last seven seasons. The Crimson Tide failed to cover in the National Championship against the Tigers in a 45-40 victory as 6.5-point favorites.
In 2016, it was Clemson blowing past Ohio State and edging Alabama in a thrilling victory in Tampa, claiming its first title since 1981, and just the second in school history.
The 2017 national semifinals were stark on contrast.
Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield and Oklahoma battled Georgia in the Rose Bowl, combining for 102 total points, most in the game's history. It was also the first overtime game in the Rose Bowl, as Georgia survived to move on. In New Orleans, Alabama used their suffocating defense to exact revenge on Clemson by a 24-6 score, setting up an all-SEC national title game.
Alabama rallied past Georgia in the title game in Atlanta, 26-23 in overtime as Nick Saban captured his fifth championship as head coach of the Crimson Tide. The Bulldogs picked up the cover as underdogs improved to 4-0 ATS in college football playoff championship games.
The 2018 national semifinals were a pair of blowouts, as Clemson hammered Notre Dame 30-3 and Alabama routed Oklahoma 45-34 in a game which wasn't as close as the score might indicate. Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray was no match for the runner-up, Tua Tagavailoa, who led his team back to the title game at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif.
Alabama and Clemson exchanged early haymakers in a high-scoring first quarter, with the Tigers leading 14-13 after the first 15 minutes thanks to a missed extra point. However, the Tigers defense showed up when it mattered most and the Tigers started to some separation. They came out in the second half and capped off a 30-3 run for their second national championship in three seasons, becoming the first team in college football history to go 15-0. The underdogs moved to 5-0 ATS in college football playoff championship games, as the Tigers didn't need the 5 1/2-point spread.
Clemson got off to a quick start against LSU in the title game Jan. 13, 2020 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans. However, a 17-7 lead by Clemson, the largest deficit of the season for LSU, served as a wake-up call. Heisman Trophy winning QB Joe Burrow and the LSU Tigers outscored the Clemson Tigers by a 35-8 count the rest of the way, and it was party time on Bourbon Street for the hometown side.
The national title marks the first for Louisiana native head coach Ed Orgeron, and the fourth in school history for LSU, including the second in school history in this building.
Alabama picked up its first title since 2017 in a 52-24 drubbing of Ohio State to claim the 2020 National Championship in Miami. The Crimson Tide covered for the first time in five tries in the title game since the format moved to the College Football Playoff.
Heisman Trophy winner DeVonta Smith ripped through the Buckeyes' defense as the Crimson Tide wide receiver hauled in 12 receptions for 215 yards and three touchdowns in the win. Underdogs covered in the first five CFP championship games, but the favorites have cashed easily in the last two opportunities.
College Football Playoff Betting Results
2020-21 College Football Playoff
2019-20 College Football Playoff
2018-19 College Football Playoff
2017-18 College Football Playoff
2016-17 College Football Playoff
2015-16 College Football Playoff
2014-15 College Football Playoff