Wade Payne/Associated Press
Georgia and Tennessee may occupy opposite ends of the spectrum in the SEC East but it’s actually the Volunteers who hold the head-to-head edge as of late in this rivalry, winning two of the last three meetings straight up, going 4-2 against the spread over the last six. Who’s the better bet for Saturday afternoon’s battle between the hedges in Athens?
College football point spread: The Bulldogs opened as 33-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark. (Line updates and matchup report)
College football betting pick, via OddsShark computer: 42.4-16.0 Bulldogs (College football picks on every game)
Why the Tennessee Volunteers can cover the spread
The Volunteers carried a two-game winning streak into last week but fell at home to Florida 47-21. Tennessee didn’t help itself by turning the ball over on its first two possessions, leading directly to Gators touchdowns, and played from behind the rest of the way.
The Vols had a chance to get back in the game with a long touchdown late in the second quarter but fumbled the ball away through the end zone and never recovered.
On the day Tennessee got out-gained by Florida but only by a margin of 387-369. And the Vols also held a 34/26 edge in time of possession. But six turnovers and a safety basically cost them 29 points. If it can clean things up, maybe Tennessee can stay in Saturday’s game.
The Volunteers had won their previous two games over East Tennessee State and UTEP by a combined score of 83-3.
Why the Georgia Bulldogs can cover the spread
The Bulldogs are 4-0 on the season and 2-0 in SEC play after besting Missouri in Columbia last week 43-29. Georgia grabbed an early 7-0 lead with a defensive touchdown and later used a score off a blocked punt to take a 20-7 advantage into halftime.
The Bulldogs then drove their opening possession of the second half to a touchdown and a 20-point lead, twice let the Tigers get within 11 but kicked a late field goal to push the spread as 14-point favorites.
For the day Georgia accumulated 445 yards on offense, 185 on the ground and 260 through the air. The Bulldogs also won the turnover battle 3-1 and, as mentioned above, scored twice on defense/special teams. Georgia now has four defensive/special teams touchdowns this season.
Three weeks ago the Bulldogs opened SEC play with a 41-17 victory at South Carolina, easily covering as eight-point favorites.
Smart betting pick
Georgia is going to win this game but Tennessee is not as bad as last week’s result might indicate. That result also probably added six points to the spread on this game. And the Vols shouldn’t turn the ball over six times this week. Smart money takes Tennessee and the points.
College football betting trends
The total has gone over in five of Tennessee’s last six games vs Georgia.
The total has gone over in eight of Georgia’s last 10 games vs its conference.
The total has gone over in five of Tennessee’s last six games vs its conference.
All college football odds and betting trends according to Bleacher Report’s official odds partner, OddsShark. Check out OddsShark on Twitter and Instagram or head to YouTube for more betting picks and analysis on this week’s top games. You can also download the free odds tracker app.