SEC East Title on Line Today with Georgia and Kentucky
The Georgia Bulldogs and the Kentucky Wildcats meet on Saturday at Kroger Field. This is the biggest game in Kentucky Football’s history since “Bear” Bryant was roaming the sidelines. The winner of today’s matchup will most likely end up winning the SEC East and play for the conference championship.
TV: 3:30 p.m. ET, CBS.
LINE: Georgia -9.5; O/U: 47
Fifth-ranked Georgia is used to playing showdown games in November. Those matchup usually come with SEC and national title aspirations at stake. That can’t be said for No. 12 Kentucky. They find itself in that unfamiliar spot on Saturday.
The Wildcats defeated Missouri 15-14 last week, scoring on the final play of the game. They are off to their best eight-game start since 1977 behind a defense that is allowing a nation-low average of 13 points. That 1977 team was on probation and couldn’t participate in the postseason.
“They’ve worked hard to put themselves in that position,” Kentucky coach Mark Stoops told reporters on Monday. “We just have to stay consistent and be the best version of ourselves we can be.”
Kentucky has improved its win total in each of Stoops’ six seasons at the helm. They were ninth in the College Football Playoff rankings that were released on Tuesday. That is three spots behind Georgia.
Georgia whipped Florida 36-17 last week. Quarterback Jake Fromm rebounded from a sub-par showing in a loss at LSU to throw three touchdown passes. He now faces a defense led by standout linebacker Josh Allen, who ranks in the top three nationally in tackles for loss (14.5) and sacks (10).
“Obviously, it is a huge game,” Georgia tight end Isaac Nauta told reporters on Monday. “You know we are playing for a chance to go to Atlanta (for the SEC championship game). I would say that is all the motivation that we need for this weekend’s game.”
Georgia and Kentucky are Two Different Types of Teams, but the Same
The Dawgs are 7-1overall and 5-1 in SEC action. Their only setback coming to 4th-ranked LSU.
Fromm improved to 19-3 as a starter in his career. He ranks second in the SEC in completion percentage at 67.4 %. The Bulldogs enter the week second in the conference in scoring offense at 38.6 points per game.
Running backs Elijah Holyfield and D’Andre Swift combined for 175 yards on 32 carries against Florida and have totaled 1,025 yards and nine touchdowns this season. The defense, which held Florida to a season-low 275 yards, is allowing 16.4 points per game.
DB Richard LeCounte made seven of his team-leading 47 tackles and also recovered a fumble last week.
The Wildcats are also 7-1 on the season and 5-1 in the conference.
Quarterback Terry Wilson completed 22-of-31 passes for 267 yards last week. Wide receiver Lynn Bowden Jr. had 13 catches for 166 yards while also returning a punt 67 yards for a touchdown.
Running back Benny Snell Jr. was held to 67 yards on 19 carries, but leads the SEC, and ranks 10th nationally in rushing yards per game at 116.9.
The defense gets plenty of attention, but the Wildcats are third in the conference in rushing offense at 214 yards.
Kentucky is the only FBS team yet to allow more than 20 points in a game this season.
PREDICTION: Georgia 24, Kentucky 20
NCAA Football Betting Odds & Trends
|Georgia is 7-1 SU in its last 8 games
|Georgia is 10-3 ATS in its last 13 games on the road
|Georgia is 11-2 SU in its last 13 games on the road
|The total has gone OVER in 4 of Georgia’s last 5 games on the road
|Georgia is 5-0 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Kentucky
|Georgia is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games when playing Kentucky
|Georgia is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games when playing on the road against Kentucky
|Kentucky is 7-1 SU in its last 8 games
|The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Kentucky’s last 5 games
|Kentucky is 2-8 ATS in its last 10 games at home
|Kentucky is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games at home
|The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Kentucky’s last 6 games at home
|Kentucky is 0-5 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Georgia
|Kentucky is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games when playing Georgia
|Kentucky is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games when playing at home against Georgia
Georgia home to Auburn Saturday, November 10
Kentucky at Tennessee Saturday, November 10
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