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Alabama vs Kansas State Prediction, Odds and College Football Betting Picks for Sugar Bowl

The 2022 College Football Bowl Season continues on Saturday with a compelling Sugar Bowl matchup between the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Kansas State Wildcats. Both teams enter this contest with ten wins apiece on the season. Now, they will battle in one of the prestigious New Year’s Six bowl games. Talk about a high-quality matchup to set the stage for the College Football Playoff Semifinals that will take place later on in the day! The Alabama vs Kansas State odds and college football betting picks have the SEC representative pegged as a sizeable favorite for this game.

The following game preview provides the college football betting odds, trends and FEI Index ratings before sharing our official Alabama vs Kansas State prediction for the Sugar Bowl matchup.

Alabama vs Kansas State Prediction | College Football Betting Picks

Sugar Bowl
Alabama Crimson Tide (10-2, 6-2 SEC) vs. Kansas State Wildcats (10-3, 7-2 Big 12)
Date: Saturday, December 31, 2022
Time: 12 p.m. EST
Venue: Caesars Superdome — New Orleans, LA
Coverage: ESPN

Concerns were raised about Alabama in the second week of the season thanks to only beating Texas by a single point. The Crimson Tide’s next scare came against Texas A&M when they had to get a goalline stand in the dying seconds to preserve the win. Alabama’s two losses this year both came on the final play as Tennessee kicked a game-winning field goal and LSU successfully converted a 2-point conversion try in overtime. As a result, a season that began with national title aspirations saw Nick Saban’s team fail to even make the SEC Championship Game.

Few could’ve envisioned Kansas State winning ten games this year when the Wildcats were upset by Tulane in non-conference play. Of course, the Green Wave turned out to be much better than expected and the same can be said of Chris Klieman’s squad. K-State opened up league play with three straight wins before falling to both TCU and Texas in a three-week span. Another three-game surge to close the regular season was enough to propel the Wildcats into the Big 12 Championship Game where they avenged the loss to TCU with a thrilling overtime win.

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Deuce Vaughn Alabama vs Kansas State prediction odds college football betting picks Sugar Bowl game predictions
Credit: AP Photo/Charlie Riedel

Alabama vs Kansas State College Football Betting Picks and Odds

All college football betting odds for Alabama vs Kansas State can be found at BetOnline Sportsbook.

Moneyline: ALA: (-265) | KSU: (+225)
Point Spread: ALA: -7 (-108) | KSU: +7 (-112)
Total: 56 — Over: (-115) | Under: (-105)

College Football FEI Ratings

The following table shares the Fremeau Efficiency Index rankings for both teams involved in this Sugar Bowl matchup. The purpose of the FEI ratings is to represent the per-possession scoring advantage that a team would be expected to have on a neutral field against an average opponent. The rankings for offense and defense are out of 131 total FBS-level teams.

Fremeau Efficiency Index (FEI) ratings are froFootball Outsiders

TeamOverall FEI (Rk)OFEI (Rk)DFEI (Rk)
Alabama1.17 (5)1.24 (10).99 (6)
Kansas State.89 (7)1.04 (17).85 (9)
  • Crimson Tide are 1-5 ATS in their last six games against teams with a winning record.
  • The UNDER is 4-0-1 in the Crimson Tide’s last five bowl games.
  • Five of the Crimson Tide’s last six non-conference games have stayed UNDER the total.
  • Wildcats are 13-3-1 ATS in their last 17 games against opponents ranked in the AP Top 5.
  • Four of the Wildcats’ last five games following a straight up win have gone OVER the total.
  • Wildcats are 7-0-1 ATS in their last eight games after allowing more than 200 yards rushing in their previous game.
  • Crimson Tide are 1-3 both straight up and ATS in their last four Sugar Bowl appearances. Alabama lost three of those games outright as a favorite of 7.5+ points.

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Alabama vs Kansas State Prediction | College Football Betting Picks

Once it became clear that Alabama would not be participating in the College Football Playoff, most automatically assumed that the team’s superstars would opt out of the Sugar Bowl. While several players did enter the college football transfer portal, the Crimson Tide’s two best players are both slated to play on New Year’s Eve.

Most analysts view quarterback Bryce Young and linebacker Will Anderson Jr. as the two best prospects in the 2023 NFL Draft class. In a world where many pro prospects skip out on joining their teammates in bowl games, both Young and Anderson should be applauded for bucking the trend.

As the reigning Heisman Trophy winner, Young’s presence in the starting lineup speaks for itself. After finishing with over 3,000 yards passing during the regular season, Young will be working with a thinned-out receiving corps in the Sugar Bowl as JoJo Earle, Traeshon Holden and Aaron Anderson all departed the Crimson Tide via the transfer portal. Having to contend with a Kansas State defense that ranked 24th nationally in points allowed per game (21.8) also won’t be easy.

One has to assume that Alabama will try to pound the Wildcats on the ground. Jahmyr Gibbs and Jase McClellan certainly are one of the more imposing RB duos in college football. The fact that Kansas State allowed over 150 rushing yards per game only supports the idea that the Tide can gain the upper hand in the trenches.

On the other side of the ball, one has to assume that K-State will also try to feature its run game in an effort to control the clock and take pressure off of QB Will Howard. After all, this is hardly the same caliber of Alabama run defense that we have grown accustomed to seeing. In their last three games against FBS-level opponents, the Crimson Tide allowed a whopping average of 231.3 rushing yards.

Alabama’s level of motivation must also be considered when making college football betting picks. After all, stopping the run is not for the faint of heart. If the Tide aren’t energized to play defense, Deuce Vaughn could become the latest RB to have a big statistical performance against Nick Saban’s defense. The fact that wideout Malik Knowles is in line to play after being knocked out of the Big 12 title game with an injury only boosts the outlook for the Wildcats’ passing attack as well.

KANSAS STATE COVERS will be our official college football betting Alabama vs Kansas State prediction for the Sugar Bowl.

For what it’s worth, the ESPN Matchup Predictor gives Alabama a 72.5% chance to win this game outright.

Bet: Kansas State +7 (-112 at BetOnline Sportsbook)

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