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Vegas books taking more bets on Clemson than favored Alabama

The betting public has fallen for the underdog in Monday's College Football Playoff National Championship presented by AT&T.

Heading into Monday, more money had been bet on Clemson at Las Vegas sportsbooks than has been bet on favored Alabama -- significantly more at some shops.

The Crimson Tide were favored by 6.5 points at most sportsbooks and listed as better than 1-2 favorites to beat the Tigers for a second straight season and repeat as national champions.

The William Hill Nevada sportsbook took a $100,000 bet on Clemson as a 6.5-point underdog Saturday and had taken 3 1/2 times as much on the Tigers as it had taken on Alabama as of Sunday afternoon.

The story was the same across Las Vegas. MGM, Caesars and CG Technology were heavy on Clemson, but the bulk of the money that will bet on the national championship game will arrive in the hours leading up to Monday's kickoff.

CG Technology, which operates the sportsbooks at the Venetian, Cosmo and M Resort, among others in Las Vegas, took approximately $1.5 million in bets on last year's national championship game between the Crimson Tide and Tigers, according to vice president of risk Jason Simbal.

Alabama also was a 6.5-point favorite over Clemson last season and held off the Tigers in a thrilling 45-40 win.

Simbal said Sunday that CG Technology had already booked $500,000 in bets on Monday's game and was expecting two-thirds of the overall action to be placed in the hours leading up to kickoff. A $75,000 bet on Alabama, placed last week, was the largest that CG Technology had taken on the game as of Sunday night.

The Westgate SuperBook reported a steady stream of bets coming in on Clemson to win the game outright. There was 10 times as much money bet on the Tigers money-line as was bet on the Alabama money-line at the Westgate.

It's not unusual for money-line bettors to gravitate to the underdog at plus-odds, and there were larges money-line bets on the Crimson Tide, too. In fact, the average amount bet on the Alabama money line at William Hill is $734 compared to only on $118 on Clemson. Still, the one-sided action on the Tigers is extreme, the books said.

"It's just a constant flow of people coming in betting a nickel [$500], a dime [$1,000], two dimes [$2,000] on the Clemson money line," said Ed Salmons, assistant manager at the Westgate. "Just constant."