Kentucky at Tennessee Preview and SEC Predictions

LEXINGTON, KY - NOVEMBER 05: Benjamin Snell, Jr. (26) Kentucky Wildcats running back rushing for yardage during the game between the Georgia Bulldogs and Kentucky Wildcats. The Georgia Bulldogs (27) defeated the Kentucky Wildcats (24) on November 05, 2016, at Commonwealth Stadium in Lexington, KY.(Photo by Jeffrey Vest/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Time for your Kentucky at Tennessee Preview and SEC Predictions here at Last Word on College Football.

A Missed Opportunity

Mark Stoops‘ club let one slip away last week as Georgia rallied in the fourth quarter for a 27-24 win. Ricardo Blankenship’s hit his fourth field goal of the game as time expired.

Leading 21-13 in the third quarter, turnovers and penalties kept the Cats from putting the game away. A holding penalty on a 49 yard field goal by Austin MacGinnis forced Kentucky to punt. A fumble by Garrett Johnson after a 20 yard gain led to a Bulldog field goal. Then a sure touchdown pass from Stephen Johnson to Jeff Badet bounced off him and into a Georgia defender.

The win would have given the Cats six wins and a winning record in the SEC for the first time since 1977. Kentucky would have also taken over first place in the Eastern Division. They have one more chance for a winning record but will have to beat a team they have had no recent success against.

Kentucky at Tennessee Preview

Kentucky at Tennessee- (NOON SEC Network)- The Wildcats losing streak against the Vols is almost as maddening as the one against Florida.

Since 1985 UK has won only once against Tennessee (10-7 in 2011) and that was without a regular starting quarterback. Wide Receiver Matt Roark played under center for then coach Joker Phillips. Maybe offensive coordinators Eddie Gran and Darrin Hinshaw should start Snell and run the Wildcat.

In the pre-season Butch Jones‘ team was everyone’s pick to win the SEC East. Despite recent struggles and 2-3 league record they still appear to have the inside track to Atlanta.

Turnovers are always a concern in football and this game will be no different. Vols QB Joshua Dobbs is second in the nation in turnovers. The only player with more, Wildcats QB Stephen Johnson.

These teams seems pretty evenly matched and whomever can control the time of possession and hold onto the ball will win.

In the second half against Georgia Kentucky became a one dimensional team, almost running the ball exclusively behind Benny Snell and Boom Williams. The tandem combined for 191 yards and all three Wildcat touchdowns.  In order to win Stoops’ club will have to get some production from Johnson and the passing game.

With a game against winless Austin Peay next week the Cats are virtually assured of a bowl game. A win on Saturday could improve their status. Right now most experts have them playing in the Belk Bowl in Charlotte.

Tennessee always seems to be able to beat the Wildcats no matter what. The Vols have righted their ship and will pull out yet another win over the Wildcats.

Tennessee 31-24

SEC Prediction Time

Last week was a tough one for the Old Krystal Ball going 5-3 with the losses being Kentucky, Texas A&M and Florida. That makes the season record a very respectable 62-11.

It has been a bad week for starting quarterbacks in the SEC with three backups starting on Saturday. Some big games this weekend and we will start down in Tuscaloosa.

Mississippi State at Alabama- (NOON ESPN)– Behind Nick Fitzgerald‘s four touchdown performance, the Bulldogs beat Texas A&M 35-28 last week. The Crimson Tide went into “Death Valley” and beat LSU 10-0 in a game that really wasn’t as close as the score would indicate.

Nick Saban’s club is a 29 point favorite in this game which seems a bit much. Nonetheless, the Tide will cover and continue on the collision course with Auburn in two weeks.

Alabama 45-13

South Carolina at Florida- (NOON CBS)– The Gators lost big at Arkansas last week and lost Austin Appleby to a shoulder injury. The Gamecocks have been a different team since Jake Bentley took over under center going 3-0. This should be a close game with the strong Florida defense being the difference.

Florida 20-14

Auburn at Georgia- (3:30 CBS)- This will be the 120th meeting between these two schools in what is the Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry. Quarterback Sean White came off the bench in the second half to lead the Tigers to a come from behind win over Vanderbilt.

The Bulldogs of course rallied late to knock off Kentucky 27-24 ending a two game losing streak. Georgia has beaten Auburn two straight but the Tigers are the better team and will pick up a huge road win.

Auburn 28-24

Vanderbilt at Missouri- (3:30 SEC Network)- The Tigers have lost 11 straight SEC games and haven’t scored more than 21 points in a league game since September 17th.

The Commodores strong defense and running game behind Ralph Webb will help Derek Mason‘s team inch closer to a bowl game.

Vanderbilt 20-13

LSU at Arkansas- (7:00 ESPN)- The Razorbacks had their best effort of the year last week dominating Florida 31-10. The Tigers dropped a sixth straight game to Alabama and still needs one more win to get bowl eligible. In a high scoring affair Bret Bielema‘s team’s will pull out the win.

Arkansas 34-28

Ole Miss at Texas A&M- (7:30 SEC Network)- Most of the talk going into this game will focus on the back-up quarterback battle. Freshman Shea Patterson will more than likely see his first playing time on Saturday replacing Chad Kelly who tore his ACL.

Jake Hubnacek will take over for Trevor Knight who is out with a shoulder injury. Kevin Sumlin‘s team will rebound from that disappointing loss to Mississippi State.

Texas A&M 35-21

That is it for this week, thanks for reading. See you next time.

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