(2-3, 2-3 ATS)
(1-4, 1-4 ATS)
The Georgia Bulldogs never even started 0-2 in SEC play with HC Mark Richt calling the shots. This is the first time they’re 0-3 as well. It’s also the first time that any of his clubs have been on a four game losing streak. The NCAA football odds are in the Dawgs’ favor on Saturday afternoon “Between the Hedges,” as they take on the Tennessee Volunteers.
Give the Volunteers credit for fighting back from an opening drive 83 yard TD run for the LSU Tigers last week to come just one play away from an outright upset. Tennessee didn’t allow another LSU TD until the final play of the game, a one yard plunge by RB Steven Ridley that sealed the deal and cost HC Derek Dooley his first major win at his new program. QB Matt Simms and RB Tauren Poole have both proved that they are legitimate, and even though their numbers aren’t absolutely sparkling on the year, they have done some damage against the best that college football has to offer. Poole has rushed for 427 yards in five games this year and has crossed the end zone line four times. Simms has thrown for 957 yards and has a rock solid TD/INT ratio of 6/3. This is a defense that has had some shoddy games, but last week, it was huge, and another effort of similar stature could lead to a big upset on Saturday afternoon.
The Bulldogs are in a lot of trouble right now, and Richt knows that at any point now, his next loss could be his last. Losses to the South Carolina Gamecocks and Arkansas Razorbacks were acceptable, but these two most recent defeats to the Mississippi State Bulldogs and the Colorado Buffaloes have been an atrocity. This is the home debut on the season for WR AJ Green, who was suspended for the first four games of the season for illegal dealings with an agent. Last week, he did come back with vengeance, catching seven passes for 119 yards and two scores, and he made a big time difference on an offense that badly needed a kick in the butt as a jumpstart. The 27 points scored proved to be the best output for the UGA offense since the opening week 55-7 ‘W’ against the Louisiana Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns. The problem is that the defense for this team is getting progressively worse. The 29 points allowed to a dreadful Colorado Buffaloes offense was unacceptable, and the scoring average is going in the wrong direction for this team every single week.
This might not be the sexiest game on the board, but it is certainly one where there is going to be a lot of hitting. The Vols have already taken on some of the best teams in the SEC this year, and this is going to feel like a bit of a reprieve. There is a legitimate chance to win this game outright, so taking the points makes all the sense in the world. We cashed in on the big point spread last week in the Bayou, and we’ll do so again in Athens for a team that is 3-1 SU and 4-0 SU in the L/4 in this series.
College Football Free Pick: Tennessee Volunteers +11