IT picks the SEC

Be sure to read "IT picks the SEC" each week to get some insights (and a few laughs) from our staff experts regarding the weekend's SEC football action. Below are this week's picks:

The national championship may well be at stake Saturday in Tuscaloosa when top-ranked Mississippi State visits fourth-ranked Alabama. InsideTennessee’s staff is split on the outcome – two staffers picking the Bulldogs, one picking the Tide.

Bama-MSU isn’t the only intriguing matchup on this week’s SEC slate. Florida is favored by 6 against visiting South Carolina, Georgia is favored by 2.5 against visiting Auburn, Texas A&M is favored by 5.5 against visiting Missouri, Arkansas is favored by 2.5 against visiting LSU and Tennessee is favored by 7.5 against visiting Kentucky.

IT publisher Josh Woodward and writer Randy Moore went 5-2 straight up on last week’s SEC Picks, with writer Danny Parker going 4-3. For the season Woodward stands 76-23, good for a two-game lead over Moore and Parker, both 74-25.

IT staffers had another tough week against the spread. Woodward went 2-3, Moore and Parker 1-4 each. Woodward continues to lead versus the points for the season with a 49-41-1 mark. Parker is next at 47-43-11. Moore, at 41-49-1, is thankful that he’s too cheap to gamble.

Here are this week’s IT staff picks, with year-to-date records in parenthesis:

JOSH WOODWARD (76-23, 49-41-1 vs. line)


Mississippi State at Alabama (-7): What a slap in the face being the number one team in the country and a touchdown underdog. Alabama will be able to throw the ball against State, but running the ball could be the issue. I think State has enough on offense to pull this win out on the road. 24-20 Bulldogs

LSU at Arkansas (-2.5): How will LSU bounce back after the Alabama loss? Obviously no one thinks they will as they are underdogs to Arkansas, but I like them on the road to win a close one. 35-30 Tigers

Auburn at Georgia (-2.5): Tough game for me to pick, I can see Georgia just running it down Auburn's throat, but then I see Auburn doing the same to Georgia. I just think Auburn can score more points. 38-31 Tigers

South Carolina at Florida (-6): Florida is on a roll and defeating a South Carolina team that is going downhill in a hurry shouldn't be a problem. 28-20 Gators

Missouri at Texas A&M (-5.5): To me this is the hardest game of the week to pick, I think they both have a good shot to win. Pure guess here, but going with the home team. 35-24 Aggies

FSU (-2.5) at Miami: I wish they both could lose, but I'm going Florida State, I think they will be able to handle Miami. 42-24 Seminoles

Kentucky at Tennessee (-7.5): The biggest line in the SEC and it shouldn't be a problem for Tennessee. I think Jalen Hurd has a 200 yard game, plus Dobbs has 200 yards passing. One step closer to a bowl game for the Vols. 38-20 Tennessee

DANNY PARKER (74-25, 47-43-1 vs. line)


Mississippi State at Alabama (-7): Ding, ding, ding! Great chance this game decides if the SEC can get two teams in the CFP. If Alabama wins and then both win-out from here on, the SEC gets its two teams. Realizing Alabama has played significantly better at B-DS this season, still don't think it will be enough. Mississippi State, 31-21.

LSU at Arkansas (-2.5): The spread freaks me out on this one. Not sure what to think. Two mistake-prone quarterbacks can toss a wrench into it at the drop of a hat as well. Good thing neither of these teams depends on the pass (or at least they shouldn't). LSU, 21-17.

Auburn at Georgia (-2.5): No earthly idea on this one, especially with Todd "John Hancock" Gurley toting the rock again. Auburn, 49-30.

South Carolina at Florida (-6): If the Gators can squeak this one out, Will Muschamp's kids may get to seven wins. Steve Spurrier may have the SEC's best offense. South Carolina, 37-30.

Missouri at Texas A&M (-5.5): Hard not to pick a Kyle Allen led offense playing at home after what the Aggies did to Auburn. Texas A&M, 34-23.

FSU (-2.5) at Miami: The Hurricanes can pound the rock with Duke Johnson. Not sure if that will be enough with a true freshman quarterback facing a talented defense. Florida State, 31-20.

Kentucky at Tennessee (-7.5): Easiest game of the week to pick? Simply cannot see the Wildcats outscoring the Volunteers in front of a soldout Neland Stadium. Tennessee, 45-27.

RANDY MOORE (74-25, 41-49-1 vs. line)


Mississippi State at Alabama (-7): Nick Saban already lost to Ole Miss, so the question is: Will he go 0-for-Mississippi this fall? I’d love to see the Bulldogs win but I just don’t think they have enough defense to prevail in Tuscaloosa. Bama 34-28

LSU at Arkansas (-2.5): Bret Bielema is 0-13 in SEC play, yet he’s favored to beat the No. 16 team in America? Apprently, Vegas knows something I don’t. Tigers, 20-10

Auburn at Georgia (-2.5): The Tigers are coming off a humiliating home loss and the Dawgs are coming off an invigorating road win. I don’t see either team stopping the other’s offense. Tigers, 41-38

South Carolina at Florida (-6): I look for Steve Spurrier to quit at the end of this season and I look for Florida to quit at some point during this game. Gamecocks, 31-20

Missouri at Texas A&M (-5.5): If the Aggies are good enough to beat Auburn on the road, they ought to be good enough to beat Missouri at home. A&M, 34-27

FSU (-2.5) at Miami: The Seminoles aren’t impressive but they keep winning. FSU, 27-20

Kentucky at Tennessee (-7.5): If Georgia could hang 63 on the Cats, I’ve got to believe Tennessee can score at least 40. Vols, 41-27

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