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Ohio State jumps Alabama as national championship favorites after signing day

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Do the oddsmakers know something the rest of us don't?

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

There are reasons to be skeptical about Ohio State's chances of winning next year's national championship. After all, the Buckeyes lose more starters than nearly anybody else in the country, and the preseason S&P+ Projections had Ohio State at 14th, behind Michigan, Notre Dame, and others. Other media members have slotted Ohio State in similar territory.

But at least one oddsmaker is much more bullish about Ohio State's chances of doing much better than that. Per oddsmaker Bovada, Ohio State currently has the best odds in the country at winning the 2017 national championship, at 6/1. Alabama is second at 7/1, with Clemson and yup, Michigan sitting at 15/2. When these odds were last tabulated, on Jan. 13, Ohio State was listed at 12/1, behind Alabama at 7/1, and tied with programs like Michigan and Baylor.

What changed? It could have been Ohio State's excellent National Signing Day, which locked down yet another top five class for the Buckeyes, including multiple players that could contribute early. It also could be a renewed vote of confident in Ohio State's Urban Meyer, or the fact that unlike many other contenders, Ohio State is bringing back an established quarterback, J.T. Barrett.

Whatever the reason, it's a little surprising to see Ohio State so far up the tables. Perhaps Vegas knows a little something we don't about just how good Ohio State might be next season.

Odds to Win the 2017 CFP National Championship (Teams in red have longer odds, teams in blue have shorter odds, and teams in black stayed the same)

1/13/16             Current Odds (2/15/16)

Ohio State                    12/1                  6/1

Alabama                       7/1                    7/1

Clemson                       15/2                  15/2

Michigan                       12/1                  15/2

LSU                            14/1                  14/1

Oklahoma                     14/1                  14/1

Tennessee                    22/1                  14/1

Baylor                         12/1                  16/1

Notre Dame                  14/1                  16/1

Stanford                       14/1                  16/1

Florida State                 16/1                  20/1

Mississippi                   22/1                  20/1

Michigan State              33/1                  25/1

Auburn                         50/1                  33/1

Georgia                        33/1                  33/1

Oregon                         22/1                  33/1

TCU                            33/1                  33/1

UCLA                           40/1                  33/1

USC                            33/1                  33/1

Florida                        33/1                  40/1

Houston                        33/1                  50/1

Louisville                     50/1                  50/1

Oklahoma State            50/1                  50/1

Washington                   66/1                  50/1

Iowa                           33/1                  66/1

North Carolina               50/1                  66/1

Texas A&M                   50/1                  66/1

Utah                             66/1                  66/1

Wisconsin                     50/1                  66/1

Arizona State                100/1                75/1

Arkansas                      50/1                  75/1

Miami Florida                66/1                  75/1

Nebraska                      50/1                  75/1

Boise State                   100/1                100/1

Missouri                       100/1                100/1

South Carolina              66/1                  100/1

Texas                          75/1                  100/1

Washington State          66/1                  100/1

Arizona                        100/1                200/1

BYU                            100/1                200/1

California                     100/1                200/1

Georgia Tech                100/1                200/1

Maryland                       100/1                200/1

Mississippi State           100/1                200/1

NC State                       100/1                200/1

Northwestern                 100/1                200/1

Penn State                    100/1                200/1

Virginia Tech                 75/1                  200/1

West Virginia                 75/1                  200/1