College football bowl games: Predictions, picks, odds, lines, schedule for Jan. 1
The final day of the 2017-18 bowl schedule is loaded with five big matchups
The year will be 2018 on Monday and with it comes the final full day of bowl games for what has been a tremendous college football season. Ten of the nation's best teams will be in action throughout New Year's Day with three terrific matchups in the early afternoon followed by the College Football Playoff in the evening.
Our CBS Sports college football experts have picked every game -- against the spread -- ahead of Monday's slate. Check out their picks below. Also check out our SportsLine projection model, which predicts the score of every game on the slate.
All times Eastern
Outback Bowl -- Michigan (-7.5) vs. South Carolina -- Noon on ESPN2: There are a lot of similarities between these two teams, from the coach on down through the roster. Because of that, it is hard to justify taking the Wolverines when they're getting over a touchdown. It's even harder to do so when you realize that, at Michigan, Jim Harbaugh is 13-15-1 ATS when favored by seven points or more. Then there's Will Muschamp, who has gone 6-4-1 as an underdog of seven points or greater with the Gamecocks. -- Tom Fornelli
Peach Bowl -- No. 7 Auburn vs. No. 12 UCF -- 12:30 p.m. on ESPN: No defenses in the American Athletic Conference can be compared to Auburn, which might have one of the five best in the country. Even with Tigers cornerback Carlton Davis and others missing in action, I think Knights quarterback McKenzie Milton will find it tough to string together long touchdown drives against a defensive front that is this athletic. Teams that tried to get Auburn moving side-to-side this year found no room so if UCF can't establish a downfield passing attack it could be a long game. There's a chance that this game turns into a back-and-forth shootout, but I like Auburn's defense to set the tone early while Kerryon Johnson and Jarrett Stidham pick apart the Knights' defense and cruise to a comfortable two-score win. -- Chip Patterson
Citrus Bowl -- No. 14 Notre Dame vs. No. 17 LSU (-3.5) -- 1 p.m. on ABC: I had already been leaning toward Notre Dame before all the news about Ed Orgeron and Matt Canada broke, and now I'm even more confident in the Irish here. It's not that I believe Notre Dame to be a much better team than LSU -- it isn't -- but I'd rather have the good team with everyone on the same page than the one without. The Irish won't be able to run all over LSU, but they'll find enough success, and I just can't trust the LSU offense to cover this spread. -- Tom Fornelli
Rose Bowl semifinal -- No. 2 Oklahoma vs. No. 3 Georgia (-2.5) -- 5 p.m. on ESPN: The over/under for this game is now at 60, and the over still seems appealing given how well these two offenses work. That would seemingly play into Oklahoma's favor. And if there's one thing Baker Mayfield has proved, it's that it is hard to bet against him. This one is setting up to be a classic -- Ben Kercheval
Sugar Bowl semifinal -- No. 1 Clemson vs. No. 4 Alabama (-2.5) -- 8:45 p.m. on ESPN: Of the three matchups between these two teams on the game's biggest stages, this is the best matchup for the Tigers. The reason is very simple -- the Crimson Tide offense hasn't been able to evolve much under first-year offensive coordinator Brian Daboll because of the absence of a downfield threat opposite Calrvin Ridley and an offensive line that is not all that it is sometimes cracked up to be. That plays into the teeth of the Tigers strength -- that defensive front. The Tigers will put the Tide in third and medium (or worse) consistently, which has been their biggest Achilles' heel in 2017. They've converted 41.5 percent of their third down opportunities this year (No. 50 nationally), and 31.43 against teams ranked in the AP Top 25 (No. 64). Give me the Tigers to not only cover, but win by 10 or more points. -- Barrett Sallee
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