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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

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Around the SEC: Week 9

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SEC Logo

As the month of October winds down, the action in the SEC is heating up to a boil. With multiple ranked matchups and rivalry games, the college football world has its eyes on the conference to see who comes out on top. Here’s a look at the action going down in week nine:
No. 7 Georgia (6-1, 4-1 SEC) vs. No. 9 Florida (6-1, 4-1 SEC)
Saturday, Oct. 27 — TIAA Bank Field — Jacksonville, Florida
2:30 p.m. on CBS
his game may very well decide who represents the SEC east come December, and as a top-10 matchup, it will have big implications in the national rankings. Georgia is reeling after a 36-16 loss to LSU, where sophomore quarterback Jake Fromm threw for 209 yards and two interceptions. The Bulldogs were also stopped on the ground, rushing for only 113 yards. Georgia faces another high-powered defense in Florida, who ranks 22nd nationally and move past their mistakes from the previous game. Florida on the other hand is continually improving after their lone loss to Kentucky earlier this season, but they haven’t been consistently challenged. Offensively, the Gators have struggled, and that does not bode well for this week’s game against an opponent that allows 310 yards a game. Sophomore quarterback Feleipe Franks has found a rhythm as of late, with 15 touchdowns and five interceptions, but he will have to play a great game to pull a win over this Bulldog defense. Watch for Georgia to recover from the LSU upset and come out strong against the Gators, capitalizing on a superior offense.
Prediction: Georgia 28, Florida 17
No. 12 Kentucky (6-1, 4-1 SEC) at Missouri (4-3, 0-3 SEC)
Saturday, Oct. 27 — Faurot Field at Memorial Stadium — Columbia, Missouri
3 p.m. on SECN
The nationally 12th-ranked offense and defense will face off in a clash of strengths Saturday afternoon when the Missouri Tigers host the Kentucky Wildcats. The Wildcats are undefeated in SEC east play and are looking to carve a path to the conference title game. Behind junior running back Benny Snell Jr., the Wildcats are dominating opponents on the ground with the second best rushing attack in the conference. Kentucky is averaging 231 yards on the ground per game, but they need to improve in the pass. In the passing game, the Wildcats only average 127. Meanwhile, Missouri’s senior quarterback Drew Lock has been playing well, with 16 touchdowns and six interceptions, but he has thrown devastating interceptions at key moments in previous games. The Tigers will have to limit Kentucky’s possession of the ball, and turnovers could lose Missouri the game. The Tigers will strike early, but the Wildcats will have a consistent attack through the ground and ultimately win this contest.
Prediction: Kentucky 28, Missouri 24
Arkansas (2-6, 0-4 SEC) vs. Vanderbilt (3-5, 0-4 SEC)
Saturday, Oct. 27 — Reynolds Razorback Stadium — Fayetteville, Arizona
11 a.m. on SECN
This interdivisional showdown features a couple of teams that are still looking to make a mark on the season. Arkansas has been struggling so far in head coach Chad Morris’ inaugural season, but the Razorbacks have shown mild improvement. Offensively, Arkansas leaves plenty to be desired and is ranked 94th nationally. However, the Razorbacks are a strong defensive unit capable of hanging in the trenches with the best of college football, and they force key turnovers that can be turned into points. Junior quarterback Ty Storey is also likely to return to the field Saturday following a head injury, which could give the Razorbacks an edge. Vanderbilt is facing struggles similar to Arkansas,’ but it has proven to be a dangerous opponent with close games against the likes of Notre Dame, Florida and Kentucky. Senior quarterback Kyle Shurmur has also proved to be a bright spot for the Commodores, having thrown for 1,845 yards so far with 12 touchdowns and five interceptions. His play will prove vital against the Arkansas defensive attack. Expect to see some mistakes made by both squads in this one, but Arkansas’ defense, returning quarterback and home field will give them the edge necessary to win.
Prediction: Arkansas 24, Vanderbilt 21
South Carolina (3-3, 2-3 SEC) vs. Tennessee (3-4, 1-3 SEC)
Saturday, Oct. 27 — Williams-Brice Stadium — Columbia, South Carolina
6:30 p.m. on SECN
In this eastern division matchup, The South Carolina Gamecocks take on the Tennessee Volunteers. South Carolina brings a solid defense that gets big stops on third downs. The Gamecocks have held teams to just a 25 percent third down conversion rate, which will prove to be a huge factor if South Carolina can keep this going through Saturday evening. The Gamecocks will also try to take advantage of a lackluster Tennessee offensive line with their strong defensive front seven. Meanwhile, Tennessee will get behind sophomore quarterback Jarrett Guarantano, who has had a strong couple of performances this season. Guarantano is averaging 170 yards a game and has six touchdowns with two interceptions. He will need a big game to secure a win for the Volunteers. Watch for Tennessee to put up yardage through the air, but South Carolina’s defense will overwhelm the Volunteers’ offensive line. Ultimately from the Gamecocks, better defense will give them the win.
Prediction: South Carolina 31, Tennessee 21

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