A bold prediction for each Week 9 SEC game
It’s the last week of college football before Halloween, and here at the Bold Prediction Department, we’re going to try to give you a bunch of the best little nuggets of tasty football goodness, not like all those other weeks where we’ve all too frequently given you the equivalent of those awful peanut butter wrapped things that nobody likes … or a bunch of rocks.
But this week’s bold predictions — well, they may seem like the stuff of nightmares, don’t be surprised a couple of them to end up being reality.
Kellen Mond scares Miss State secondary all day
Mississippi State limps into this game on the cusp of watching Joe Moorhead go scare some other fan base. Not only haven’t the Bulldogs won a game in a month, but they’re giving up 244 passing yards per game. A&M has to like the sound of that, as its running game has been fairly meager. But Kellen Mond should have all day to make plays, and we’ll put him down for 300 yards in a 3-score win.
Justin Jefferson has a career day against Auburn
It’ll be 2 excellent defenses as Auburn squares off with LSU. Seriously, the defensive stats are almost identically great. But what isn’t identical is the passing production. Joe Burrow (deservedly) gets all the attention, but his most consistent weapon is receiver Justin Jefferson. In his past 3 games, Jefferson has 9, 10 and 8 catches. He’s eclipsed 100 yards 4 times — and had 89 yards in another blowout. He’s also scored a touchdown in 4 consecutive games. Look for him to continue doing what he does on Saturday, but with a little extra. Give us season-highs for JJ on catches (11) and yards (164+). LSU hits Auburn early with some big plays, and holds on for a 2-score win behind the most underrated player in the SEC.
South Carolina capitalizes on Vols’ turnovers
Fresh off playing competitively against Alabama, UT will hold a halftime lead against South Carolina as it continues to show week to week improvement. But the Vols will cough it up in the 2nd half, as UT’s Achilles’ heel will continue to be costly turnovers. That narrative fits well since South Carolina has gotten pretty good at forcing turnovers. We see a 2nd half defensive score for the Gamecocks, who open up a 17-point win.
Yes, Nick Saban had a minor explosion about it. But we’re going to see Taulia Tagovailoa, a’ight … and here’s the thing, he’ll be better than Mac Jones. Jones is fine as a short-term game manager, but he didn’t exactly light up Tennessee last week. If Kentucky’s Lynn Bowden could quarterback a win over Arkansas (as he did 2 weeks ago), Taulia should have no trouble showing some of that family talent. Is it going to go to the level of a family QB competition? Not quite. But the kid will show some skills in Alabama’s easy win — pencil him in for 150 yards and a couple of touchdowns in relief of Jones.
Kentucky upsets Mizzou
It’s going to rain in Lexington on Saturday, and in their 2nd consecutive game on a wet track, Kentucky will capitalize on a couple of things it learned at Athens. For one, the sloppy track for a poor road team will cut Missouri’s speed advantage. For another, Kentucky will have to find a few plays in the passing game to make this possible. But without Cale Garrett, they’ll find a way. Mark Stoops might have to sneak out there himself at quarterback, but Kentucky will find a way to pull this out playing at home.