Tennessee Volunteers vs. South Carolina Gamecocks Betting Odds, Football Pick

OddsShark.com@@OddsSharkFeatured ColumnistOctober 26, 2016

FILE - In this Sept. 17, 2016, file photo, Tennessee quarterback Joshua Dobbs (11) congratulates wide receiver Josh Malone (3) after scoring a touchdown in the second half of an NCAA college football game against Ohio in Knoxville, Tenn. Tennessee coach Butch Jones is in his fourth season on the job and believes his Volunteers have never faced a defense quite as good as the one Florida brings to Neyland Stadium this weekend. (AP Photo/Wade Payne, File)
Wade Payne/Associated Press

Tennessee owns three straight wins in its rivalry with South Carolina and five covers over the last seven meetings. The Volunteers will look to stay alive in the SEC East race when they take on the Gamecocks on Saturday evening in Columbia.

               

Point spread: The Volunteers opened as 14-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by Odds Shark (line updates and matchup report).

College football pick, via Odds Shark computer: 32.4-19.2, Volunteers (College football picks on every game)

               

Why Tennessee can cover the spread

Tennessee was off to a 5-0 start this season, but it has lost its last two times out. Three weeks ago, the Vols lost at Texas A&M in double overtime, and two weeks ago, they were blown out by Alabama 49-10 in Knoxville. They then had last week off.

Not much good came out of the loss to the Tide, but, to be fair, Tennessee was banged up and down a handful of starters.

Against the Aggies, the Volunteers fought back from a 28-7 deficit, scoring twice in the last two minutes to force overtime. But a field goal in the first extra period wasn't enough. Tennessee totaled 684 yards of offense against A&M, including 282 on the ground.

At 2-2 in conference play, the Vols trail first-place Florida by one game in the SEC East. But they also own the tiebreaker with the Gators, thanks to a come-from-behind victory at Neyland Stadium a month ago.

                

Why South Carolina can cover the spread

South Carolina snapped a three-game losing streak with a 34-28 victory over Massachusetts last week, and the game wasn't quite as close as that final score might indicate. The Gamecocks grabbed a 7-0 lead on the Minutemen three minutes into the game and led 27-7 and 34-14 before allowing UMass two late scores that made the final more respectable.

On the day, South Carolina outgained the Minutemen 395-389 and outrushed them 194-142, with a good percentage of Massachusetts' yardage coming in comeback mode. Meanwhile, Gamecocks freshman quarterback Jake Bentley, making his first collegiate start, hit on 17 of 26 throws for 201 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions.

Prior to that, South Carolina lost to Georgia 28-14, but that was a one-score game before the Bulldogs returned a Gamecocks onside kick for a touchdown with just over a minute to play. And before that, they lost to Texas A&M 24-13 but covered rather easily as 19-point underdogs.

               

Smart pick

Tennessee has had an extra week to recover from that Alabama debacle, and playing on the road means the spread is friendlier. The smart money on the college football point spreads here sides with the Volunteers.

               

Betting trends

Tennessee is 8-1 against the spread in its last nine games on the road against South Carolina.

The total has gone under in eight of South Carolina's last 11 games.

Tennessee is 4-1 ATS in its last five games on the road.

               

All college football betting lines and point spreads data courtesy of Bleacher Report’s official odds partner, Odds Shark. All quotes gathered firsthand unless otherwise noted. Check out Twitter for injury and line movement updates and Odds Shark YouTube for picks and analysis, or download the free odds tracker app.

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