For those into hypotheticals, the University of Alabama football team is a 26-point underdog to the New England Patriots, they of the 8th Super Bowl appearance in 17 years — with five wins and one TBD.
Per the Prediction Machine, Alabama could keep that team, and one of history’s best quarterbacks, to within four touchdowns...allegedly:
The Crimson Tide would be a near four-touchdown underdog — 26 points — against Tom Brady and the AFC champs, according to the Prediction Machine.
The question was posed this week by WJOX 94.5 FM host Tony Kurre, who earlier this month had former Vegas oddsmaker Todd Fuhrman on his show to touch on a mythical Alabama-UCF showdown.
I think Danny Sheridan probably nailed the real outcome here:
If the game mattered like the Super Bowl, I’d make @Patriots -44 vs. the @UofAlabama & I don’t think Alabama would score a TD.
Yeah, that seems about right. No matter how much we love our team and the athletes, literally nothing in college compares to the timing, lack of space, physical parity, preparation, violence and speed of the NFL game. They’re just two separate animals.
Former NFL player Ryan Riddle has a really good piece in B/R discussing the differences in the two games:
The best professional football players learn how to dissect the game and their opponents long before they take the field. College athletes never have the luxury of going so in-depth. So, essentially everyone in college is on a relatively even playing field in terms of preparation.
College football is equalized in preparation opportunity, while the NFL is generally more equalized in physical ability. Guys in the league quickly realize they can no longer rely solely on their physical gifts to be dominant.
So, yeah -44 is probably closer to it. The largest NFL point spread ever, by the way? The 2013 Denver Broncos vs. the Jacksonville Jaguars. Alabama wouldn’t keep it that close. (The phenomenon works for hoops too, where even the monstrously talented 2014 Kentucky Wildcats starting five future NBA players would still lose to the woeful ‘14 76ers at least 78% of the time.)
So, rather than speculate about how the best college team would fare against the worst NFL team, let’s see what you think about the best vs. the best.
If the Alabama Crimson Tide played the Patriots, New England would...
This poll is closed
Name their score. Alabama may not even make into the end zone. (35+ or more points)
Not quite slaughter the Tide, but there would be no doubt about it either (18-34 points)
Be in for a dogfight with physical, motivated Alabama players, but still win (1-17 points)
Be upset by Alabama, baby! (Justify yourself in the comments below)