Perennial powers in the SEC Championship Game with a little something at stake? Seriously, who doesn't want to watch the Alabama Crimson Tide take on the Georgia Bulldogs for a shot at the title?
Both teams have taken different routes to arrive at the same place. Alabama has been the prohibitive favorite all season while the Bulldogs have had to fight their way back after a disappointing loss to then-No. 6 South Carolina.
However, both squads are ready to go. Are you?
When: Saturday, December 1, at 4:00 p.m. EST.
Where: Georgia Dome in Atlanta, GA
Live Stream: CBS Sports
Pick Against the Spread: Georgia (+7) according to bovada.lv
Georgia is good. People seem to have forgotten this. They have an experienced signal-caller and two running backs who are capable of moving the sticks.
However, this game will be decided on the defensive end. Alabama is better, but the Crimson Tide won't enjoy a third-straight 49-point victory. Not against Georgia.
Take the points.
Over/Under Pick: Under 50.5 according to sportsbook.ag
It's two high-scoring SEC teams that also happen to have stingy defenses. Not an easy choice. However, I'll err on the side of caution, like these two coaches will. Trust the defenses to get the job done and play the field-position game.
DB John Fulton (toe, questionable); WR Chris Black (shoulder, questionable); WR Kenny Bell (leg, out); RB Jalston Fowler (knee, out); RB Dee Hart (knee, out); WR DeAndrew White (knee, out); and DB Jarrick Williams (knee, out).
LB Sterling Bailey (thumb, probable); FB Marritt Hall (ankle, probable); NT Mike Thornton (ankle, questionable); SE Marlon Brown (knee, out); LB Chase Vasser (shoulder, out); DE Abry Jones (ankle, out); LB Brandon Burrows (hand, out); and SE Michael Bennett (knee, out).
BCS/Top 25 Implications
Let's not spend too much time here. The winner will play Notre Dame in the BCS National Championship Game in Miami, Fla. The loser will likely fall out of the BCS all together considering Florida is waiting in the wings to scoop up the leftovers.
Keys to a Crimson Tide Win
Keep the freshmen rolling. Alabama has a couple of nice veterans in A.J. McCarron and Eddie Lacy, but the offense needs Amari Cooper and T.J. Yeldon to make plays. Cooper leads the team in catches, receiving yards and touchdowns while Yeldon has been the ying to Lacy's yang with 847 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns.
Get after Aaron Murray. Quite frankly, it might be the only way to slow down Georgia's offense. In three of the last four games, he has completed 75 percent or more of his passes. If he gets time, the Bulldogs can pull off the upset.
Keys to a Bulldogs Win
Finish drives. Alabama has the top scoring defense in the country (9.3 points per game); however, it's not invulnerable. When Georgia picks up a few first downs, it needs to end up in the end zone. Make the Crimson Tide's mistakes count, because there won't be many of them.
Win at the line of scrimmage. Alabama is so dominant because its offensive line is. It's easy to run and pass the ball when the lanes are open and the pressure is non-existent. Otherwise, Georgia will be forced to score too many points on that stingy defense.
Alabama 24, Georgia 21
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