Auburn, Georgia, and Georgia Tech all win tough games

 The Fearless Friday Forecast:

1. LSU at Auburn: A classic matchup between the SEC’s best offense (Auburn’s 38.5 ppg) and most productive offensive player (QB Cameron Newton, 25 touchdowns) and the league’s best defense which is holding opponents to only 13.2 points per game in conference play. I’m interested to see what LSU defensive coordinator John Chavis comes up with to stop Newton’s ability to run the ball (122.9 ypg), particularly between the tackles. I usually go with defense in big games but I don’t think LSU can throw the ball well enough to exploit the Auburn secondary, which is struggling.  Auburn 27, LSU 24.

2. Georgia Tech at Clemson: These two teams certainly know each other as they meet for the third time in 13 months. This is basically an elimination game for both teams. It would be Clemson’s (3-3, 1-2 ACC) third conference loss and would just about eliminate any hope of winning the  Atlantic Division. Georgia Tech (5-2, 3-1), needs a victory because the Jackets still must face Virginia Tech (Nov. 4) and Miami (Nov. 13). I think it comes down to the quarterbacks and in a tough game like this I like No. 9 at Georgia Tech (Joshua Nesbitt). Georgia Tech 28, Clemson 24.

3. Georgia at Kentucky: Kentucky has to come down from the high of beating South Carolina last week and get ready for a Georgia team that is starting to play with a little confidence. This game features two of the best play makers in college football in Kentucky’s Randall Cobb (40 catches, 466 yards) and Georgia’s A.J. Green. Kentucky will be without its best running back, Derrick Locke. Defensive stops will be precious in this game and I think Georgia gets one more than Kentucky and Blair Walsh kicks a late field goal to win the game. Georgia 38, Kentucky 35.

4. Alabama at Tennessee: Some of the steam has gone out of this great rivalry because Tennessee is really struggling (2-4, 0-3 SEC). The Vols have had a week off to recover from a devastating loss at LSU on Sept. 25 followed by a 41-14 beatdown at Georgia on Oct. 9. Alabama is No. 8 in the BCS Standings and needs to win impressively to stay in the national championship hunt. Look for Bama to wear down an undermanned Tennessee defense with its running game. Alabama 31, Tennessee 10.

5. South Carolina at Vanderbilt: Despite last week’s disappointing loss at Kentucky, South Carolina (4-2, 2-2) still controls its destiny in the SEC East. If South Carolina can run the table against Vandy, Tennessee, Arkansas, and Florida the Gamecocks will go to their first-ever SEC championship game. Vanderbilt has beaten South Carolina two of the past three years. But the Commodores can’t throw it effectively enough to win the game. South Carolina 28, Vanderbilt 17.

 

6. North Carolina at Miami: North Carolina will be going for its fourth straight win over Miami. The Tar Heels (4-2, 2-1 ACC) have won four straight since an 0-2 start and have done so despite a ton of suspensions due to NCAA investigations. You have to like what T.J. Yates (of Marietta’s Pope H.S.) has done for North Carolina, completing 66.5 percent of his passes for 11 touchdowns and only one interception. Something is still not quite right with Miami. The Hurricanes were dominated two weeks ago at home by Florida State (45-17) and last week the offense scored only 21 points despite seven Duke turnovers. I like North Carolina. North Carolina 24, Miami 20.

7. Oklahoma at Missouri: Oklahoma has won seven straight and 19 of its last 20 against Mizzou. Oklahoma (6-0) is No. 1 in the BCS Standings while the Tigers are No. 11. I like the Sooners because RB DeMarco Murray is starting to find his groove and quarterback Landry Jones is playing with more confidence after completing 30 of 34 against Iowa State. Missouri has a very good quarterback in Blaine Gabbert who is coming off his best game (361 yards, 3 touchdowns) last week in a 30-9 win against Texas A&M. But Gabbert’s play just won’t be enough for Mizzou to win. Oklahoma 28, Missouri 20.

8. Nebraska at Oklahoma State: Nebraska did not expect to be pushed around by Texas last week. The Cornhuskers may be out of the national championship race but they still have a chance to win the Big 12 title. In fact, it might help going back on the road where Nebraska has won six straight. The Cowboys are lighting up the scoreboard this season with an average of 49.5 points per game. Those numbers, however, are a little deceiving because they have come against the following defenses:  Washington State ( ranked No. 118 nationally), Troy (77), Tulsa (85), Texas A&M (50), Louisiana-Lafayette (110), and Texas Tech (99). Nebraska, Saturday’s opponent in Stillwater, is No. 9 in scoring defense (14.0 ppg). Nebraska 31, Oklahoma State 24.

9. Wisconsin at Iowa: The Big Ten championship goes through Iowa City as the Hawkeyes host the first of three monster games. Wisconsin is coming off a huge home win against Ohio State, but Iowa is among the best teams in the country at stopping the run. If Iowa had not lost at Arizona on Sept. 18, the Hawkeyes would be in the middle of the national championship race. Iowa 21, Wisconsin 17.

10. Ole Miss at Arkansas: The Razorbacks have had two heartbreaking losses to Alabama and Auburn. They won’t win the SEC West but they can finish 10-2 and go to a New Year’s Day Bowl in Florida. Even if Ryan Mallett can’t go backup QB Tyler Wilson showed last week against Auburn that he is more than capable. Arkansas 35, Ole Miss 24.

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Shameless plug: As we near the annual Georgia-Florida game you should know that my friend Robbie Burns is having a local signing of his book “Belue to Scott” on Saturday at 1 p.m. at the Border’s at John’s Creek. The book gives a great historical look at the single biggest play in Georgia football history. Go by and see him and pick up some early Christmas presents.

456 comments Add your comment

Finchdawg

October 22nd, 2010
7:40 am

How ’bout them Dawgs! We need this one bad.

ATL is TigerTown

October 22nd, 2010
7:42 am

Based on last week’s performance, I think you’re being very generous to Vandy.
War Cam Eagle!!!

Finchdawg

October 22nd, 2010
7:42 am

Tony, you sure love the late Blair Walsh field goals in your UGA picks, don’t you?

Martin the Calvinist

October 22nd, 2010
7:42 am

Top of the morning to ya Tony, enjoy reading your articles!
LSU by one, Tech by a field goal, UGA by a field goal, Tide roll, UNC gets Shannon fired, OU wins, Cornhuskers rebound, Iowa usually wins at home, and the little piggies roll! Have a great weekend…..Go Dawgs!

SC Boy

October 22nd, 2010
7:43 am

Go Dawgs. Eliminate KY from the East race.then lose to UF and Auburn.

ATL is TigerTown

October 22nd, 2010
7:44 am

Oh. I’m still hoping Cam doesn’t get hurt.

ATL is TigerTown

October 22nd, 2010
7:46 am

Feeling pretty confident in The Auburn Tigers. Not too sure about UGA. KY is a very good football team. War Eagle!

NoTigers

October 22nd, 2010
7:51 am

The sooner Auburn loses, the better for all us.

Charlie Bama

October 22nd, 2010
7:55 am

Good analysis, TB. I’d have to agree with all of it, except Clemson may, MAY, pull it off and send the YellowWrecks home empty. BTW, really enjoy your broadcast venues–Please stay with it. You’re popping up everywhere!

merculf

October 22nd, 2010
7:56 am

What’s the only thing Chuck Norris is scared of? Cam Newton! WDE!

Charlie Bama

October 22nd, 2010
7:57 am

No Way the hapless, inept Les Miles can stop Cam Newton. I agree Aubie needs to lose, but LSU can’t do it.

jumbeauxtiger

October 22nd, 2010
7:58 am

LSU 26 Auburn 24
Ga Tech 27 Clemson 21
UGA 31 UK 24
Bama 31 UT 6
SC 34 Vandy 17
UNC 24 Miami 20
OU 30 Mizz 21
Neb 21 Okla St 17
Wis 34 Iowa 28
Ark 37 Ole Miss 27

Dooley the Vol

October 22nd, 2010
7:59 am

Saban goes easy on the protege, thankfully.
If Cobb was playing the dogs would fall.
I think Climpson pulls this out.

Charlie Bama

October 22nd, 2010
7:59 am

Did anyone see Oregon last night? (nawh, didn’t think so.) Anyway, those guys are good. Fast, smart, productive. Not sure a worn out SEC champ could be at them (or outscore them, anyway)

Les Miles

October 22nd, 2010
8:01 am

Can someone PLEASE explain this whole game clock thing? Seriously. Fans keep jumping me about clock management–what IS THAT?

Scruffy

October 22nd, 2010
8:02 am

Dawgs are about to see the bitter end for the next three weeks. Gimmicks just dont work for this team.

MURPHY

October 22nd, 2010
8:04 am

First I would like to congradulate WashingtonDCDuck on a very impressive Oregon win last nite.I said all week that this would be the game Oregon would struggle and Oregon proved me wrong. Wow what an offensive display.They are tough.

I say Oklahoma St beats Nebraska. Clemson beats Tech Wisconsin wins

reebok

October 22nd, 2010
8:05 am

I’m trying to remember if Tony has picked against either GT or UGA yet this year…anyone?

jumbeauxtiger

October 22nd, 2010
8:06 am

Tony, Auburn’s OL has been playing well and they have other weapons besides Newton so LSU will not be able to just concentrate on him. LSU is 3rd in the nation in total defense but they have a huge challenge to say the least.

I believe the key for the Bayou Bengals is controlling the ball on offense and stop the drive killers they have had with turnovers and penalties. Auburn’s pass defense is 108th in the nation so it will be interesting to see if LSU can get their passing game untracked.

shane

October 22nd, 2010
8:07 am

UCLA has now been outscored 130-20 by Stanford, Cal, and Oregon combined. Wow!

Not a Tech or UGA Fan.....

October 22nd, 2010
8:09 am

Tony
In the Clemson Georgia Tech game if it comes down to the quarterbacks you better hope Nesbitt doesn’t have to win it with his arm because he sucks. I think Tech wins the game but you better hope it not that close that Tech has to start throwing it.

jumbeauxtiger

October 22nd, 2010
8:12 am

Les Miles, the clock thing is old news. That was a nice job in managing the time at the end of the Florida game. The Gators only had 11 seconds left when you scored the go ahead TD.

Charlie Bama, Oregon looked awesome last night. I would not want to play them right now.

MURPHY

October 22nd, 2010
8:18 am

shane,

Who can beat Oregon? Who has that kind of speed on Defense to control Oregon?

FLA DAWG

October 22nd, 2010
8:20 am

We find out if Grantham’s D Dawgs have begun to learn the 3 – 4 this weekend.

Charlie Bama

October 22nd, 2010
8:20 am

MURPHY is right. O has speed, speed, speed. And they use the faster-than-hurry-up offense for the entire game. To beat them, an SEC team will have to score at least 60% of Oregon’s typical production, AND stop them at least half of their drives. No small task.

Finchdawg

October 22nd, 2010
8:21 am

reebok, I don’t know about Tech, but he picked UGA to lose to Colorado. That’s the only one though, I think.

shane

October 22nd, 2010
8:22 am

Murphy

Will be a tough task. Have to keep that offense on the sideline and control the ball. 10 to 14 play drives and eat up the clock. The ducks want to run a play every 18 seconds and if they score and then get the opposition to go three and out. Big Trouble!

MURPHY

October 22nd, 2010
8:23 am

Charlie Bama,

Im not so sure the SEC has anyone to stop Oregon. I think only Oregon can beat Oregon. You would have to cause turnovers and make sure you get points off them. A team wit a supurb running game might be the answer-keep the Oregon offense off the field.

Corch Wolfson

October 22nd, 2010
8:25 am

Oregon will always look “awesome” when they are playing a team with zero defense. Their quickie offense ( I like to call it “afternoon delight” ) is a cute gimmick. It is incredibly rude for the Duck fans to boo injured players because they assume that they are faking it in order to shut down their “snap the ball before the defense lines up” gimmick offense.

Give any team ( even Ohio State ) with a decent defense a few weeks to prepare and they’ll figure out how to shut down the Ducks. I’m old, but I could run the ball on a defense that’s looking the other way when the ball is snapped.

MURPHY

October 22nd, 2010
8:25 am

shane,

looks like we are on the same page-uh?

shane

October 22nd, 2010
8:26 am

Yeah. Lol. Only way to beat them.

Auburn will not lose a game.

October 22nd, 2010
8:27 am

jumbeauxtiger, really? Untracked, is that a word? lol You guys are not man enough for Auburn, neither is Georgia or Bama. Back on top like it always has been. WAR EAGLE

McDawg

October 22nd, 2010
8:28 am

will Spurrier play Latimore if SC gets bogged down–SC seems fairly average on offense w/o that powerful running game

Corch Wolfson

October 22nd, 2010
8:28 am

Auburn will not lose a game.

What’s that old saying? Oh yeah… “Famous Last Words”.

Charlie Bama

October 22nd, 2010
8:30 am

Nerd Alert — “Auburn will not lose a game.” Aka — The prissy boy who lives in his momma’s basement is on the field.

MURPHY

October 22nd, 2010
8:31 am

McDawg,

Whats the status of Lattimore? Is he cleared to play? I dont know if I would risk him playing-wasnt it a high ankle sprain?

Auburn will not lose a game.

October 22nd, 2010
8:32 am

Charlie Bama, we are gonna wax the bammers arse and the rest of the chumps in our way, my favorite team to beat is lsu because they are always overrated along with Bama, two teams that live in the past. WAR EAGLE

Smart like a Fox

October 22nd, 2010
8:33 am

Ky and FL will be easy wins for the mighty dogs….they should not spend a minute worrying over those two. Auburn looks like a little test. Just look ahead and think three weeks down the road. Who has Ky beat anyway? Lets not forget FL is way down and coming off 3 loses in a row ,no threat there.

MURPHY

October 22nd, 2010
8:34 am

AU will not lose,

Yeah they live in the past? Bama defending Natl Champs-Yeah thats way in the past!

Charlie Bama

October 22nd, 2010
8:35 am

Lattimore is said the be 85% — I wouldn’t risk it, myself.

Shug

October 22nd, 2010
8:36 am

Cam “Laptop” Newton will will the Heisman just like Johnny “tire iron” Rodgers.

shane

October 22nd, 2010
8:36 am

Thank you Murphy. I was trying my best to not say something.

Charlie Bama

October 22nd, 2010
8:38 am

Ignore the couch basement nerd. We’ll all be better for it.

3rdn8

October 22nd, 2010
8:39 am

Looks like everyone is playing for second.

Don’t see anyone on Oregon’s schedule that can beat them. If the UCLA game is any indicator, they won’t break a sweat going down the stretch. Can’t see how Oregon in not the unanimous choice for No. 1. (think there’s a double negative in there somewhere)

Oklahoma….you kidding me?

That effectively halves the number of slots left available for the NC game. If you make the assumption (and I don’t think it’s a very good one) that voters will leave BSU, and TCU out in the cold…the SEC’s only hope is that Oklahoma tanks.

Looking less and less like a one-loss SEC team makes the show.

There’s a lesson here children…..don’t take your team to Columbia SC, and then step on your schwantz

Auburn will not lose a game.

October 22nd, 2010
8:40 am

Georgia won’t stay on the field with Auburn. A couple crappy wins and they think there are worlbeaters again. Nobody in this conference is in Auburn’s league……NOBODY!

Watch and learn!

JB

October 22nd, 2010
8:40 am

Clemson beats Tech…….Dawgs win big, say 2 TD’s…………Talent coming together and Murray is the Man

JB

October 22nd, 2010
8:41 am

Always a chance to beat Auburn with the lack of Defense…..pitiful

3rdn8

October 22nd, 2010
8:41 am

is this a school holiday?

SadDawg

October 22nd, 2010
8:41 am

Tony, you write about playmakers but don’t mention UGA’s biggest playmaker – Aaron Murray.

UGA had to do a complete reversal of it’s first two SEC road games. 6 or 12 points ain’t gonna get it done tomorrow night.

Gonna take 30+ points. Hope we can do it.

Go Dawgs!

AUin ATL

October 22nd, 2010
8:42 am

On AU-LSU. I realize anything can happen, but based on what I’ve seen, LSU doesn’t have much of a chance. Sure, LSU has a good D. Ok, so they slow down AU and hold them to below their avg. LSU still can’t win. LSU may have the best D stats, but then again, they haven’t exactly played the best Os in the SEC. So far, no one had figured out how to stop Newton. Also, its not like AU doesn’t have a good running game (besides Newton). Cam is great, but is not the only weapon. LSU will have to throw to have a chance. When you throw it, 3 things can happen, as we all know 2 are bad, Just ask AK. If you pass enough, eventually you will throw a pick and give the ball back to Cam and co. To top it all, LSU is not known for throwing very well. I understand its the SEC and who knows, but based on what we know now, AU wins big. Miles contract with lucifer expires on saturday.