Week 8 sec picks and predictions
By: Grant Poarch
All I can say about this weekend is that if you care about college football at all, watch the Tennessee vs Alabama game. After how last year’s game ended, Alabama is out for blood. Tennessee, deservedly so, celebrated that win like it was the national championship. A legendary field storming and a goalpost in the Tennessee river aside, this weekend is sure to be another entertaining one in the SEC.
Last week, I had a lower-than-average prediction article. I went 4-2 on the money line and 3-3 on the spread. That brings my overall record to 53-14 on the money line this season and 25-29 on the spread. This week, none of the spreads are less than a touchdown. Therefore, it should be easier to predict the winners this week. With that said, tail me at your benefit and fade me at your expense. The odds listed are provided by DraftKings.
Mississippi State @ Arkansas (-6.5, O/U 49.5), 12:00PM EST, ESPN
As much as I like the SEC, I will not be tuning in for this game due to Penn State @ Ohio State being on at the same time. Both teams have already suffered several losses and another right here for either side could put the respective losing coach on the hot seat.
This one has given me the most trouble in predicting the outcome. For starters, Mississippi State quarterback Will Rogers and running back Jo’quavious Marks are highly questionable for the game. On the other side, Arkansas has lost five games in a row. So, something has to give
Mississippi State (3-3) is worse than their record says they are. Their wins are not impressive. In week one, they beat Southeastern Louisiana 48-7 but they are an 0-7 team. After that, they had to go to overtime against Arizona and they struggled against Western Michigan.
In addition to their wins being unimpressive, Mississippi State’s defense is terrible. For reference, Mississippi State hasn’t allowed less than 28 points in four weeks. While putting faith into a 2-5 team is wild, I’m going to do that here.
Prediction: Arkansas wins, Mississippi State covers +6.5
South Carolina @ #20 Missouri (-7.5, O/U 59), 3:30PM EST, SECN
To me, this looks like it will be a mismatch. South Carolina seems lost this year at 2-4 and Missouri has only dropped one game so far to LSU. The reason why Missouri will win this game is because South Carolina is allowing 321.7 passing yards per game which is the worst in the country. Mizzou will be able to get the ball to Luther Burdern III with ease and because of that take Mizzou and the points.
Another reason why Missouri will win this one is because of South Carolina QB Spencer Rattler’s play on the road. In contrast to his 10-1 touchdown to interception ratio at home, he has a 1-3 touchdown to interception ratio on the road. Beyond that, South Carolina is 0-2 on the road.
Rest in piss, Rattler.
Prediction: Missouri wins, Missouri covers -7.5
#17 Tennessee @ #11 Alabama (-8.5, O/U 47.5), 3:30PM EST, CBS
Here. We. Go. The Third Saturday in October means something a little bit different this year. Make no mistake about this game… Alabama is mad after the way things turned out a year ago. The Vols’ first victory in this series since 2006 was celebrated like no other. Having been there in person, I can vouch that it was something fans will have a hard time forgetting anytime soon.
Usually, when Alabama has a revenge game, they come out on fire and show who’s the boss. In this one, that isn’t the vibe I’m getting. While I would not be shocked by an Alabama victory at all, Alabama has not beat teams this year the way they normally do. They have struggled against teams like Arkansas, Texas A&M, and USF. With that said, I don’t see an Alabama blowout coming.
On the other side, Tennessee looks completely opposite of what they were a year ago. The defense is actually really good and the offense has struggled mightily. Under a normally dominant Alabama team, this Tennessee team would be toast. Joe Milton has not looked great this season and he cannot afford to have any careless turnovers come Saturday afternoon.
In this one, Alabama will get their revenge in a very close low-scoring affair. The difference in this one is that Alabama is at home and has looked better than Tennessee has overall. Until Joe Milton proves it this season, I don’t see Tennessee winning as big of a game like this one will be.
Prediction: Alabama wins, Tennessee covers +8.5
#13 Ole Miss (-6.5) @ Auburn, O/U 56.5, 7:00PM EST, ESPN
Before the season started, I had this one circled on my calendar. Former Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze will be facing off against the Rebels for the first time since he was canned for ‘hookers and cocaine’. The only thing that could make this one better is if the game was in Oxford instead of Auburn.
On the field, Ole Miss is a much better team than Auburn. If Auburn wasn’t at home for this one, I’d count it for the Rebels fairly easily. At home, Auburn played Georgia down to the wire and has blown out the teams they were supposed to in the other home contests. No doubt the crowd will have an impact on the game, but there comes a point where if the players aren’t as good as the other team… it doesn’t matter.
If you watch this game, you might be surprised that an Ole Miss letdown is happening, but I sure won’t be. Since 2016, Ole Miss has only won this game once (2022). However, this Auburn team is not up to standard and because of that I don’t see Payton Thorne outdueling Jaxson Dart.
Prediction: Ole Miss wins, Auburn covers +6.5
Army @ #19 LSU (-30, O/U 57.5), 7:30PM EST, SECN
This one will be over quickly. I can’t think of a matchup this week with more of a difference in play style than what these two teams do. LSU lights up the scoreboard and doesn’t play much defense. On the other hand, Army will try to beat you on ground and pound as well as hard-nosed defense.
The difference in playstyle will be on full display as LSU will score at will and Army won’t be able to pass the ball to keep up. The Tigers are going to have to continue to roll on offense as this game is the only one remaining separating them from a throwdown against Alabama.
Expect Jayden Daniels and the rest of the LSU offense to have a field day. This spread is huge, but unless Army holds the ball for 30 minutes or more, LSU will cover to make their imminent victory that much sweeter for some.
Prediction: LSU wins, LSU covers -30