Who is in the College Football Playoff championship? Teams, odds & spread for 2024 CFP title game

College football fans have become accustomed to the run of dynasties in the College Football Playoff in recent years. Georgia finished winning back-to-back titles. Alabama has won three national championships in the CFP era. Clemson earned a pair as well.

This year, fans will not only get a first-time CFP national champion, but one that hasn’t won one it at least 26 years. No. 1 Michigan toppled No. 4 Alabama in overtime of the Rose Bowl, while Washington held off Texas in the Sugar Bowl to set up the title game.

For both teams, they are not only looking for their first national championship, this is also their first trip to the title game. Michigan fell in both its previous trips to the College Football Playoff. Washington lost back in the 2016 semifinal to Alabama.

MORE: Why Michigan will beat Washington in the CFP final

It has been a tumultuous season for the Wolverines. Coach Jim Harbaugh was suspended for the first three games of the season for alleged recruiting violations during the COVID-19 dead period and misleading investigators. The program was then mired in another scandal midway through the season with allegations a member of the team’s coaching staff used illegal sign-stealing methods by in-person scouting opponents, a penalty for which the Big Ten wound up suspending Harbaugh for the final three games of the year.

All the Wolverines did during that three-game span without Harbaugh was beat Penn State on the road and take down rival Ohio State en route to winning its third straight Big Ten title and punching a ticket to the College Football Playoff for the third straight year. The Wolverines then kept their undefeated season alive by beating Nick Saban and No. 1 Alabama in overtime to earn the program’s first College Football Playoff victory.

BENDER: Michigan’s ultimate dream is one step closer

The Huskies run to an undefeated season wasn’t always pretty. Washington came out of the gates blowing teams out routinely, but went through a stretch where it struggled a bit, beating Arizona only by a touchdown, surviving against Oregon in a narrow clash, scoring just 15 points against Arizona State and allowing 33 points to Stanford.

But in a vaunted Pac-12, Washington came out undefeated, twice besting an Oregon team that was favored against them both midway through the year and again in the Pac-12 Championship. Quarterback Michael Penix Jr. finished second in Heisman Trophy voting as he and a stellar receiving corps posted eye-popping numbers throughout the 2023 campaign.

Here’s what you need to know about the 2024 national championship:

Who is in the College Football Playoff championship 2024?

  • No. 1 Michigan vs. No. 2 Washington

Playing for the national championship will be No. 1 Michigan and No. 2 Washington.

This will be the first national championship game appearance for both the Wolverines and the Huskies.

When & where is 2024 CFP title game?

  • Date: Monday, Jan. 8
  • Kickoff time: 7:30 p.m. ET
  • TV network: ESPN
  • Location: NRG Stadium, Houston, Texas

Fans can be prepared to travel south to Houston at the home of the Texans for the 2024 national championship. This will be the first time the game has been held in Houston.

This won’t be the first time the game has been held in Texas, however. The first-ever CFP title game was held at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, when No. 4 Ohio State beat No. 2 Oregon.

College Football Playoff national championship odds, line, spread

  • Opening spread: Michigan -4.5
  • Moneyline: Michigan -180/Washington +152
  • Over/under: 56

Per Caesars, Michigan opens as a 4.5-point favorite. The Wolverines are also at -180 on the moneyline, while the Huskies are at +152 odds to win outright.

The over/under between these two stellar offenses is set at 56. Michigan finished the season tied for 12th among FBS teams averaging 36.5 points per game, while Washington averaged 37.7 to rank 10th.

How many times has Michigan been to the national championship?

Michigan has technically never played in a national championship game. Those head-to-head contests have only existed since 1998, when the BCS system was first installed. Prior to that, national champions were designated by various organizations.

That doesn’t mean the Wolverines haven’t won titles before. In fact, they’ve claimed nine total championships: 1901, 1902, 1903, 1904, 1918, 1923, 1933, 1948 and 1997. The Wolverines split championships with Nebraska in 1997 after finishing the season ranked No. 1 in the AP poll and beating No. 8 Washington State in the Rose Bowl. But No. 2 Nebraska, which also went undefeated and topped No. 3 Tennessee in the Orange Bowl, also has a shared claim on that year’s title.

Michigan had previously been the College Football Playoff twice: in 2021 and 2022. It lost in the first round in both years, first to Georgia and then to TCU.

How many times has Washington been to the national championship?

Like the Wolverines, the Huskies have never played in a national championship game. Washington has made only one previous College Football Playoff appearance, which came back in 2016. But the Huskies lost to Alabama in the first round of the playoff that season.

Also like Michigan, that doesn’t mean the Huskies don’t have any banners. They have one, which came back in 1991. That came when No. 2 Washington beat No. 4 Michigan in the Rose Bowl. Like Michigan’s 1997 title, however, it is also a shared title with Miami, which went undefeated, finished the year ranked No. 1 in the AP poll and shut out No. 11 Nebraska in the Orange Bowl.

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