College football is a week away from the Big Ten rejoining the fold, but there are still dozens of games set to be played this Saturday. The slate is set to be underscored by the primetime SEC meeting of Georgia and Alabama. Here is a glance at college football Week 7 odds and breakdowns of the top games.
College football odds: Week 7
Saturday, Oct. 17: Top games to watch and wager on
Kentucky at No. 18 Tennessee – 12 p.m. ET
The Wildcats held the Mississippi State offense scoreless (only points: a two-point safety by way of the defense) just two weeks after KJ Costello tossed for over 600 yards. While it’s far from the start Kentucky wanted, they’re still a potentially dangerous team. This could be considered a “trap game” for Tennessee, which is coming off a loss to No. 3 Georgia. The Vols need this game to keep their ranking– and their turnaround season– alive.
This is another relatively low-scoring affair according to oddsmakers who’ve set the point total at 48.5. That’s not much of a surprise from a pair of teams who regularly see games with a final score in the 20s. Georgia was a tough opponent for the Vols, but Tennessee will have to push the ball downfield and gain more chunk plays after being held to zero net rushing yards and six yards per attempt through the air.
Just one week after one of his best career games, Terry Wilson completed just eight of his 20 passes for 73 yards and the Wildcat offense found the end zone just twice. Should the Kentucky defense play another outing like last week, they’ll be able to pull off the upset.
Army at UTSA – 1:30 p.m. ET
The Roadrunners came into last week’s game at 3-1 and took a very good UAB team down to the wire with some great defense. Staring down a matchup with BYU (+48.3 point differential coming into the game), many assumed UTSA would end up as roadkill. However, UTSA put up quite the fight and held the nation’s top-scoring offense to just 27 points in losing by just a touchdown. The Roadrunners might just be the nation’s best 3-2 team.
Army, on the other hand, was nearly victim to one of the biggest upsets of the season. The Black Knights scored just 14 points (3/12 on third down) in a 14-9 barnburner with The Citadel. The nation’s top rushing defense was held to just 153 yards on 50 attempts. If Army’s reputation holds, we can expect a much better effort this coming week.
UTSA likes to run the football and has done so effectively so far this year, averaging 183 yards per game and 4.8 yards per attempt. Last week, the Roadrunners found their quarterback in Lowell Narcisse. Narcisse averaged 10.5 yards per attempt against BYU. Army will need to game-plan for the new signal caller, giving UTSA an added twist to their game. Either way, should be a closer game than it appears.
UCF at Memphis – 3:30 p.m. ET
This is one of the best games of the season, annually, despite UCF’s 13-game win streak. The history between these two teams has been stellar, with the two often meeting up in the AAC Championship game. It’s almost always a high-flying event and this matchup should be no different with the point total set at 74.5.
For the first time in a few years, UCF is sitting at .500 in the AAC and is looking to get back on track. In last game’s loss to Tulsa, the Knights had 18 penalties for 124 yards– something they have to taper against Memphis. They also went 7/18 on third down in that game. Dillon Gabriel is continuing his excellence, ranking second in the country in passing yards per game (385).
Memphis is coming off a loss to SMU– their first game in a month– in which they allowed 474 passing yards to Shane Buechele. If the Tigers’ secondary plays that way again, Gabriel might have a career day. The combination of backs for Memphis has been key in their two games this season, with each averaging over five yards per carry, although they have struggled to find the end zone (Memphis has just one rushing TD all season).
No. 3 Georgia at No. 2 Alabama – 8 p.m. ET
It’s no secret as to what the biggest game this week is. Just two weeks after facing No. 7 Auburn, Georgia plays its third ranked opponent in as many games. This is a game the Bulldogs haven’t won since 2007. The two haven’t played in a regular season game since 2015, when the Tide beat up on UGA 38-10. The point total is set at 59.5 for this one – an unusually high mark for two teams with historically stout defenses.
The reason for that Over/Under lies with Alabama’s defensive struggles this season – 30.3 points allowed per game would be the highest in program history. The last time Alabama allowed even 20 points per game was in the 2003 season which the Tide finished 4-9. Their offense has never been more potent, though; Alabama is scoring 51 points per game (best in the nation).
The Dawgs have a very real chance to pull off the upset on the road this week if Alabama continues to be shaky on the defensive side of the ball. Without the normal crowd in Tuscaloosa, Alabama’s home field advantage is virtually gone. This should be a great game and both teams have an opportunity to establish their prowess. This also may not be the last time we see this matchup this season.
Alabama head coach Nick Saban, who tested positive for COVID-19 earlier in the week, has now had two straight negative tests and could potentially be on the Crimson Tide sideline Saturday.