Week 12 SEC: Kentucky at Tennessee

    Kentucky (5-5) at Tennessee (4-5) Nov. 15, 4:00, SEC Network Here’s The Deal: While several SEC teams are jockeying for bowl positions, and assuming a

    November 12, 2014

    Kentucky (5-5) at Tennessee (4-5) Nov. 15, 4:00, SEC Network 

    Here’s The Deal: While several SEC teams are jockeying for bowl positions, and assuming a two-loss champ would get into the playoff, many are still dreaming of getting into the final four, Kentucky and Tennessee might be playing a bowl elimination game. 

    Tennessee still has some wiggle room needing to win two of its last three, but a loss to the Wildcats would make next week’s date with Missouri a make-or-break moment with Vanderbilt to close out with six wins. Assuming the Commodore layup, a win over UK would probably get it done and make this a solid stepping-stone season for Butch Jones and the program. 

    Kentucky’s momentum has been stopped dead cold losing four straight, and while battling with Mississippi State and Missouri was nice, getting blown out by LSU and Georgia showed just how far the team has to go. Even so, all it’ll take is a win on the road against Tennessee or Louisville get bowling – much easier said than done. For all the positive things the team did this year, a loss this week would put the pressure on for the near future – not in a hot seat sort of way, though – with a loss to Louisville too making it a six-game losing streak to close things out. 

    Tennessee has won 27 of the last 28 meetings going back to 1984 with the one gap a 10-7 Kentucky win in 2011. 

    Why Kentucky Might Win: Forgetting the explosion against South Carolina for a moment, the Tennessee offense has been wildly inconsistent and it’s not cranking out the big rushing yards on a regular basis. The passing game is solid, but that’s been one of Kentucky’s bigger strengths, allowing under 200 yards per game and not giving up much deep. Teams work best when they’re running the ball on the UK D, and while the Vols will have some success, can they avoid the big mistakes and keep the chains moving? The Wildcats have been great in turnover margin – they might have to be +2, at least, to win. However … 

    Why Tennessee Might Win: Yeah, Tennessee might not be running well on a regular basis, but it was fantastic against South Carolina and was far more effective than it was a few weeks ago when it netted a grand total of zero yards against Ole Miss – coming up with 181 yards against Alabama wasn’t bad, either. Granted, UK dealt with some killer ground games, but it still allowed over 300 rushing yards to LSU, Mississippi State and Georgia. Playmakers are starting to emerge among the Vols skill talents, and in a hurry, it has its star to build around in … 

    Who To Watch Out For: quarterback Joshua Dobbs, who followed up a 75-yard rushing day against Alabama with 166 yards and three touchdowns on 24 carries against South Carolina to go along with 301 yards through the air and two touchdowns. Stepping up with Justin Worley oud with a shoulder injury, get ready for the offseason hype if he continues to play like he has over the last two weeks. 

    What’s Going To Happen: Dobbs, Dobbs and more Dobbs. Kentucky has a young star quarterback of its own in Patrick Towles, but it’s Dobbs who’ll control the game from the start as Tennessee’s offense roars for a second straight week. 

    Prediction: Tennessee 40 … Kentucky 31 
    Line: Tennessee -8.5 o/u: 54 
    Must Watch Factor: 5: Foxcatcher – 1: The Comeback … 2.5 

    DOWNLOAD THE APP

    Have the full Stadium experience

    Watch with friends

    Get rewards

    Join the discussion