As Mrs. Dead Guy has decreed that the overly large family celebration of Turkey Day be held here in our humble abode, picks are brief this week as my time not cleaning, cooking, and raking is limited.
Mississippi State @ Ole Miss
Wednesday's Line: Ole Miss -16
After a win like last week's in Baton Rouge, common thought would be the Rebels are due for a let down. Even with an improved offense behind QB Tyson Lee, they just don't have enough firepower to play 60 minutes with the Rebs. The "Golden Egg" goes back to Oxford.
Straight Up Winner: Ole Miss
Against the Spread: Mississippi State
LSU @ Arkansas
Wednesday's Line: LSU -4.5
LSU was manhandled by the Rebels' defensive line last week and RB Charles Scott was held to just 10 yds. They won't have those same problems against the Hogs' porous D, which surrenders 4.5 ypc and 170+ ypg. Regardless of who starts at QB, LSU wins this one.
Straight Up Winner: LSU
Against the Spread: LSU
Georgia Tech @ Georgia
Wednesday's Line: Georgia -8
Both teams feature strong rushing attacks and strong rush defenses. But only one team features a real QB and a seven-game winning streak in this series. And they're playing Between the Hedges. Georgia all the way.
Straight Up Winner: Georgia
Against the Spread: Georgia
South Carolina @ Clemson
Wednesday's Line: Pick 'Em
Unlike the UGA/GTU series, this series is swung much in the favor of the in-state rival from the ACC. Neither team has lived up to expectations this season, but Clemson seems to have rallied around interim HC Dabo Swinney. South Carolina meanwhile can't make up its mind on a QB and is coming off a 50-point throttling. While this one will be much closer, Clemson pulls it out.
Straight Up Winner: Clemson
Against the Spread: Clemson
Auburn @ Alabama
Wednesday's Line: Alabama -14
Obviously, the biggest storyline here is "Can Auburn lock up an Independence Bowl bid with a win?"... or not. Tide fans have had this date circled all season as the chance to end 6 years of frustration. The Tigers will—as always—fight valiantly to the end, but their offensive woes will do them in as running against Bama's front seven will be next to impossible. The Tide rolls.
Straight Up Winner: Alabama
Against the Spread: Alabama
Florida @ Florida State
Wednesday's Line: Florida -16.5
The Criminoles have experienced something of a resurgence this year and enter the game ranked in the Top 20. While they're certainly improved, there's no real advantage they have in this game except for the fact it's in Tallahassee. The Gators are too focused and crisp right now to drop this one to their arch-rivals.
Straight Up Winner: Florida
Against the Spread: Florida State
Kentucky @ Tennessee
Wednesday's Line: Tennessee -4.5
A few weeks ago, I was convinced the Vols would suck it up and play like a decent team the last 3 games of the season and fall ass-backwards into a Liberty Bowl bid. In the first of those 2 games, they've played as bad or worse offensively as they have all season. Unfortunately for UK, it was 1984 the last time the 'Cats beat the Vols. Neither team is very good offensively, but I'll give the edge to UT at home in Fulmer's swan song as the Battle Captain.
Straight Up Winner: Tennessee
Against the Spread: Tennessee
Vanderbilt @ Wake Forest
Wednesday's Line: Wake Forest -4
The Deacons play too sound to play into VU's hands. They manage the clock well and don't turn it over, both things that have frustrated the 'Dores all season. While Vandy is a great story to become bowl eligible this year, WFU has been there/done that and that experience will show in this game.
Straight Up Winner: Wake Forest
Against the Spread: Wake Forest