Outkick’s Picks for Week Six 2014

Mississippi Rebels head coach Hugh Freeze after a win against the Vanderbilt Commodores at LP Field. Mississippi won 41-3. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Alabama Crimson Tide offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin on the sidelines against the Southern Miss Golden Eagles during the second half at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Alabama defeated the Southern Miss Golden Eagles 52-12. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports,John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Last week we went 6-3-1 with a really tough late night push on Baylor that kept us from going 7-3. Come on Baylor, you miss a field goal, allow a 51 yard touchdown pass in the final minutes and then take a knee in a first and goal situation? I don’t even feel like I know you at all any more. That runs our record to 24-19 on the year for a decent 56% win rate. This is the week we get back above 60% boys and girls, here we go now! 

This week we’ve got a tremendous collection of games to bet in the SEC. Can you ever remember a weekend when there were five SEC games all with right at a touchdown spread or less? That’s an insane amount of competitive games. While Bob Stoops may believe the league is top heavy, Vegas is telling us that with the exception of Vanderbilt, the league has never been stronger 1-13. I’ve actually convinced myself that I feel really good about four of these big games. But I legitimately have no read on the Texas A&M at Mississippi State game. 

With that in mind, like Grandma always said it’s time to get rich or die trying. Here we go with ten picks for the weekend:

Vandy at Georgia -33

Here’s the deal, I don’t believe Vanderbilt can score ten points against Georgia and I know the Dawgs are going to score 45 against Vandy. That’s a 35 point margin. My only concern here is that Georgia tries to get too cute, pulls Todd Gurley in the first quarter already up 21-0, and decides to let Hutson Mason work on his passing game, leading to four interceptions, a potential pair of pick sixes, and a Vandy cover.

So far this year in the SEC, Vandy has scored just two offensive touchdowns. Meanwhile the Commodores have returned two kicks for touchdowns and scored on defense. As I said in the Starting 11 if this trend holds it would be one of the most remarkable statistical outcomes ever, a team more likely to score touchdowns on defense and special teams than on offense. I keep thinking, what am I missing here and I honestly can’t find anything. Georgia has a weak secondary, but Vandy can’t throw the ball against air. Plus, Georgia actually has some motivation since they lost last year. This one’s going to get ugly fast.  

SMU at ECU -40

I’d love to see SMU and Vandy play a football game this season because I don’t believe either team would score on offense. Someone would win 6-4. ECU can score a ton of points, when last we saw them they were hanging 70 on North Carolina. Now they’ve had two weeks to rest and are playing a team without an offensive touchdown all season. I hate to tell you it’s too good to be true because then people rush away from gambling on this game, but it’s too good to be true. ECU is covering the forty point line. 

Yes, I now realize that I’ve bet on teams to cover 33 and 40 point spreads. 

South Carolina -4.5 at Kentucky

People seem to believe that Kentucky is a decent football team. People are wrong. Was I the only person in America without a son playing in the game who watched every snap of Vandy at Kentucky on his laptop? (The answer is probably yes). The Wildcats were awful in that game. Not as awful as Vanderbilt, but awful enough to lose to every other team in the SEC. I know that South Carolina just lost a tough one to Missouri and hasn’t been very impressive so far this year, but we’re still talking about Steve Spurrier’s team. They have some pride, they’re not losing to Kentucky.

The fact that this line has moved from 10 to 4.5 despite the Kentucky suspensions doesn’t trouble me because when everyone seems to expect an upset to happen, an upset usually doesn’t happen. Sometimes you just have to trust your read. Gamecocks by ten.  

Stanford -2 at Notre Dame

Stanford should be undefeated and may well have the best defense in the country. Notre Dame is ranked in the top ten despite not having beaten anyone of substance. (Welcome to Fighting Irish football. Only Ohio State gets more props for beating bad teams). I’m a bit concerned about Stanford’s ability to score — witness the USC game where they dominated the Trojans but managed to lose because they couldn’t score — but I still feel like Stanford wins on the road by a field goal or more.

God forbid Notre Dame wins this game, the national media is going to act like they just beat the Seahawks.  

LSU at Auburn -7.5

What’s our betting mantra? Trust in Gus, right? You know Auburn will score 35 in this game. How confident are you that LSU, breaking in a true freshman quarterback on the road, is going to score 28? Not very, right? So that’s the play here. You can overthink bets sometimes. I’m not overthinking this. Auburn wins by double digits. 

Oklahoma -5 at TCU

Remember a couple of weeks ago when I told you to bet Oklahoma on the road at West Virginia because everyone seemed to think that the Sooners were ripe for an upset bid. Now the same thing is happening at TCU. What do we actually know about TCU? They’ve played Samford, Minnesota, and SMU and Vegas seems to think they’re the third best team in the Big 12. That may well be true, but I believe there’s a big difference between Oklahoma and Baylor and the rest of the Big 12. This line is telling me that isn’t true. Meaning this line is wrong. Boomer. Sooner.  

Florida at Tennessee -2.5

This is the bet your mortgage pick of the week. Tennessee is going to win by double digits over Florida. Yes, I made this exact same prediction two years ago, but Derek Dooley’s Vols collapsed in the final twenty minutes of the game. Butch Jones’s team is not collapsing. You can read more about why to take the Vols here, but put the mortgage check on the Vols.

The Vols have lost nine in a row to the Gators and often these rivalry streaks don’t end with close victories, they end with blowouts. So too with this game.  

Texas A&M +2.5 at Mississippi State

Dak Prescott is a great player, but I feel like A&M is uniquely positioned to handle him on defense because they’ve defended Johnny Manziel for the past two years in practice every week. Things like that make a difference because otherwise it’s tough to have your scout team mimic the speed and quickness of a player like Prescott. I also think State will miss its starting center, who is suspended for this week’s game.

On the other side of the ball, Kenny Hill and the Aggie offense aren’t going to be stopped.  

Give me the Aggies. 

Baylor -16 at Texas

I was already going to bet on Baylor, but then Texas’s players started running their mouths about how Baylor was still Baylor. Real smart, Longhorns, real smart. This is a great match-up because Texas is playing against the coach it should have hired. And you know Art Briles, who would have liked to be Texas’s coach, wants to beat the crap out of the Longhorns. 

He’s going to do it too. 

Look out. 

Alabama -6 at Ole Miss

In order for Ole Miss to win this game, bad Bo Wallace can’t make an appearance for an entire game. Do you know how unlikely that is? Bad Bo Wallace will appear for at least a quarter, potentially a half. Either will be destructive to Ole Miss’s chances to win or cover.

Nick Saban and Lane Kiffin have had two weeks to prepare for Ole Miss. Did you see what Kiffin did to Florida with one week to get ready? Uh oh. This is the game when people start saying, “Holy hell, Bama’s a juggernaut on both sides of the ball.”

Look out Rebels, it’s going to get ugly in Oxford. 

Written by Clay Travis

OutKick founder, host and author. He's presently banned from appearing on both CNN and ESPN because he’s too honest for both.