2023 SEC Odds: College Football Betting Preview, Win Totals, National Title Futures

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Written By Brett Gibbons | Last Updated
SEC odds

Through all the change in college football recently, there is one constant: Southeastern Conference dominance. The Georgia Bulldogs have won back-to-back College Football Playoff national championships, and the SEC has won five of the last six titles. The sport’s two best coaches, Nick Saban and Kirby Smart, continue their arms race for superiority in the conference. However, Georgia is favored over the field in 2023 SEC odds across sportsbooks.

Welcome to our SEC betting preview for the 2023 college football season. Below, you can find win projections, previews for all 14 teams, coaching moves, and much more. Many of the teams included top National Championship odds boards. Find somewhere comfortable to sit – we’re diving in deep. Click on any of the odds in this post to bet now, with new users locking in the best sportsbook promo codes.

SEC Odds: To Win The Conference

Compare SEC odds from the best sports betting sites below.

The SEC holds onto divisions for one more season. As a result, Georgia dominates SEC odds boards thanks to its path to Atlanta. While the SEC East is by no means easy, they rate nearly 10 power points higher than the second-best rated team, Tennessee. Compare that to the SEC West, where Alabama edges out LSU by just 4.0 power points. After LSU, there’s a drop off in the West, explaining the three-team race.

Tennessee and Texas A&M make up a middle class, with the Vols needing to upend Georgia to get to Atlanta – something they haven’t done since 2016. A&M, on the other hand, upset Alabama in 2021 and is 3-2 against LSU in its last five meetings. The rest of the league makes up longshots for good reason. While an Ole Miss or South Carolina could rise up and shock the conference, it would be just that: a shock.

SEC Odds: Projected Wins, Win Totals

Projected wins below are derived from aggregate power ratings, including SP+, FPI, and more. Win totals are pulled from FanDuel Sportsbook as of July 6.

TeamProj. WinsWin TotalPrice
Georgia Bulldogs11.311.5+116/-142
Alabama Crimson Tide10.310.5+148/-184
LSU Tigers9.59.5-115/-105
Tennessee Volunteers9.09.5+146/-188
Texas A&M Aggies7.67.5-176/+142
Ole Miss Rebels7.57.5-124/+102
Kentucky Wildcats7.06.5-162/+132
Arkansas Razorbacks6.96.5-122/-102
Mississippi State Bulldogs6.86.5+118/-144
Auburn Tigers6.46.5-142/+116
Florida Gators6.35.5-134/+110
Missouri Tigers6.06.5+104/-128
South Carolina Gamecocks5.96.5+118/-144
Vanderbilt Commodores3.83.5-170/+138

SEC Power Ratings

Table Key (all ranks except power rankings are national):
– Rank (Power ranking, conference)
– Proj. Wins (Projected total wins)
– Return (Returning production, total)
– Ret. O (returning offensive production)
– Ret. D (returning defensive production)
– PPD (Points per drive scored)
– PPDA (Points per drive allowed)
– L5 (Last five years recruiting average, national)

SEC KFord Ratings

TheLines.com college football writer Kelley Ford posts his KFord Ratings for each conference on his website and Twitter. See his projections below:

SEC KFord

SEC Odds: The Favorites

SEC odds UGA

Georgia Bulldogs

Kirby Smart has arrived. Following back-to-back national titles, Georgia reloads and enters the 2023 season as the preemptive favorite to win the whole thing again (). No team has three-peated as National Champion since Minnesota from 1934-36 (pre-AP era).

The Dawgs turn over at offensive coordinator, promoting analyst Mike Bobo after Todd Monken left for the NFL. Last year’s backup QB Carson Beck rises as the likely starter this year and gets an embarrassment of riches to work with. Georgia brought in Dominic Lovett and Rara Thomas at receiver to add to a strong existing corps led by Ladd McConkey. But the key to the entire offense is Brock Bowers, one of the best tight ends in recent college football history. Beck – or four-star Brock Vandagriff – also gets the luxury of playing behind the nation’s best offensive line (per Phil Steele and Athlon Sports).

Defensively, the team is so loaded with talent that they repeated as the top unit nationally despite watching 15 draft picks leave after 2021. Defensive lineman Mykel Williams and linebacker Jamon Dumas-Johnson headline All America selections on that unit.

This year, I project Georgia for 11.3 wins – the most in the nation. They play an extremely beneficial schedule, the easiest in the SEC by a comfortable margin. They handle UT Martin, Ball State, UAB, and Georgia Tech outside of SEC play, none of which rank inside the top half of my preseason power ratings. The only potential roadblock for Georgia to win a third straight title comes in the College Football Playoff.

Alabama Crimson Tide

Unlike other blueblood counterparts in 2023, Alabama losing a prolific QB actually casts some doubt on the team compared to their traditional position atop SEC odds boards. Gone is Heisman winner Bryce Young and remaining is a threesome of Jalen Milroe, Ty Simpson, and Notre Dame transfer Tyler Buchner. The former two were sacked a combined nine times in Alabama’s spring exhibition and Buchner transferred in shortly after that game. New offensive coordinator Tommy Rees has much more talent to work with in Tuscaloosa than South Bend, but his job doesn’t get any easier.

In April, Nick Saban said that we wanted to run a “more balanced offense” in 2023. Last season, the Crimson Tide rushed the football on 49.2% of plays, just a hair under league average. With a trio of high-four star running backs in Jase McClellan, Roydell Williams, and freshman Justice Haynes, Alabama has the firepower to return to a power rushing football team. They also return one of their weakest groups of receivers in years, combined with the aforementioned QB conundrum.

Saban further alluded to a return to 2010s Alabama football when he brought back defensive coordinator Kevin Steele, who’s spent four years on the Tide’s staff between 2007-14. This side of the ball is much more loaded, with All America candidates like corner Kool-Aid McKinstry and linebacker Dallas Turner. Also keep an eye out for five-star safety Caleb Downs, who projects to start – and contend for All-SEC honors – as a true freshman.

While expectations are tempered for the first time in a decade, Alabama still is a winning program and deserved of its short odds in both the SEC () and the National Championship ().

I project them for 10.3 wins thanks to the seventh-most difficult schedule nationally. However, look for opportunities to bet under point totals should Alabama return to a run-and-defend approach to football.

SEC Odds: The Other Favorite

LSU Tigers

LSU defied all expectations last season, winning the SEC West in its first year under Brian Kelly. This year, they return 73% of roster production – including 82% on offense (seventh-most) – and bolster that roster with a strong transfer class. However, they’ll have to fight for wins thanks to a schedule that ranks fifth-hardest nationally and includes Florida State to open the year.

Jayden Daniels returns alongside the four other LSU rushing leaders. The Tigers also added Notre Dame’s Logan Diggs, who rushed for 822 yards last season. Four of the top six receivers also return, headlined by Malik Nabers, as do four starters along the offensive line. This unit ranked 20th in points per drive and 28th in scoring, numbers that should at the very least remain consistent.

But the real strength of this team comes on defense. Harold Perkins might be the best all-around defensive player in the country and stud lineman Maason Smith returns from missing last year with injury. Perkins, combined with Oregon State transfer Omar Speights, elevates LSU to one of the top linebacking corps in the country. The Tigers also added at least three starters at corner via the transfer portal – Denver Harris (247Sports’ No. 2 overall transfer), Zy Alexander (No. 5 CB), and JK Johnson (No. 8 CB). The sentiment from the portal is that LSU is ready to re-assume the “DBU” moniker.

The talent and coaching is there. But, LSU handles the Alabama game on the road this time and its neutral-site game against Florida State heads to Orlando. This could be a team that, even if they drop two games or more, could finish the season as a top-five talent nationally.

SEC Odds: The Contenders

Texas A&M Aggies

Like its Austin counterpart two hours West, Texas A&M once again looks great on paper. Save for a 2020 COVID season, Texas A&M has failed to finish a season inside the top 10 despite constant expectations to do so. For the past few seasons, the Aggies have always been “one year away.” If that year isn’t 2023, then that time is never coming.

According to a quote by an opposing SEC coach in Athlon Sports’ preview magazine, Texas A&M has “culture issues…[that] shows on the sideline in games.” To clear up those culture concerns, the Aggies hired offensive coordinator Bobby Petrino.

Jimbo Fisher said he intends to hand the play calling duties over to Petrino this season after leading A&M to offenses that ranked 69th and 97th in points per drive in the last two seasons. They failed to score 30 points against an FBS opponent until their last game against LSU last season, a mark that could have saved them four of their losses.

The talent is there – five-stars Conner Weigman, Evan Stewart, and Reuben Owens, and versatile playmaker Anais Smith, make A&M’s offensive skill corps one of the most talented in the SEC. The Aggies’ offensive line is a top-10 unit nationally and the defense has been stout for years. They handle Alabama in College Station this year, but otherwise play a difficult schedule. But the most interesting thing about A&M is the science experiment that is Petrino on the coaching staff.

Tennessee Volunteers

Perhaps losing Hendon Hooker and their two best receivers to the NFL would be frightening to some Tennessee backers this season, but the Vols project to be a very serious contender once again. Gone is offensive coordinator Alex Golesh, but Tennessee promoted QBs coach Joey Hazle to the OC spot for 2023. Hazle will work alongside Joe Milton at QB – a rocket-armed wild card who’s shown flashes of both greatness and catastrophe in his career at both Tennessee and Michigan.

With a QB as strong-armed as Milton, Tennessee’s offense shouldn’t change all that much. They return three starters along the offensive line and capable playmakers in Jabari Small and Bru McCoy. Offense won’t be the problem.

Defensively, Tennessee could have been better. A no-show appearance in which the Vols’ stop unit gave up 63 to South Carolina likely cost them a spot in the College Football Playoff. They return seven starters on that side of the ball and 73% of total defensive production.

Keeping up a rock-solid defense is difficult when the offense on the other side runs at the pace Tennessee does. The Vols took the second-fewest seconds per play in 2022 (20.2 seconds) and scored the seventh-most points per drive.

The Vols have to run through Georgia in the SEC East (although they handle that game in Neyland). They draw their annual rivalry with Alabama on the road and also travel to Florida; that’s not to overlook a Week 9 game at Kentucky in which the Vols come off that Alabama game and Kentucky off a bye. Outside of league play, Tennessee faces Virginia, Austin Peay, UConn, and UTSA.

A SEC Odds Longshot To Consider: Kentucky Wildcats

Following a 10-3 campaign, Kentucky seriously underwhelmed last season, going just 7-6. Aside from expected losses against Ole Miss, Tennessee, and Georgia, the Wildcats turned in pitiful performances against South Carolina and Vanderbilt in the regular season. They capped that year with a 21-0 shutout bowl loss to Iowa.

The reason for such a decline in performance, specifically on offense? Coordinator Liam Coen took a sabbatical in the NFL, but returns for the 2023 season. Before Coen assumed the position in 2021, the Wildcats hadn’t cracked the top 50 in points per drive in 11 seasons; in 2021, that spiked to 15th. Without him, back down to 95th, despite returning 68% of roster production and QB Will Levis.

Kentucky brings in NC State QB Devin Leary, who missed much of last season with an injury, and returns seven of its top eight receiving options (including all top five). Three starters along the offensive line also return, bolstered by two transfers. Defensively, Kentucky has been formidable under Mark Stoops and should be again this year.

They draw Georgia and Louisville on the road and Alabama at home from the SEC West, making their schedule arduous once again. As a result, their season-long outlook is a bit bleaker than the team’s talent might suggest. But look for early overs and longer point spreads in SEC odds as I expect Kentucky to look closer to its 2021 team than last year’s.

A Team To Fade In SEC Odds: Florida Gators

Parsing through preseason data and ratings, Florida stands out in SEC odds. No team inside my top 25 projects for fewer than 7.5 wins, except for Florida, who projects for just 6.3. Further, no team has a win total at sportsbooks lower than 7.5, except again for Florida, who clocks in at 5.5. I’ll be up front: I think the numbers are way too bullish on the Gators.

An opposing SEC coach was quoted by Athlon Sports as Florida having its “least talented overall roster in 20-some-odd years.” That, of course, begins at quarterback.

It seems like Florida was banking too much on prized recruit Jadan Rashada, who publicly broke up with Florida and headed to Arizona State over NIL disagreement. But that wasn’t the only high-profile recruit that Billy Napier and staff missed out on since arriving prior to last season. They also consistently lost battles in the transfer portal, only managing to land underwhelming Graham Mertz at quarterback. Even possible starters like Spencer Sanders opted to sit in crowded QB rooms than head to Florida.

The Gators also return just one starter on defense in their front seven and just 48% of their overall roster production.

Florida must have angered the scheduling gods, as they draw the second-toughest schedule nationally. They play Florida State and at Utah in the non-conference and draw LSU in their annual rivalry. I project the Gators to be an underdog in six games and double-digit ‘dogs twice (at LSU, vs. Georgia). Only once do I project them to be favored by more than 3.5 points against Power Five competition.

The bottom line: I may not always bet Florida when my power ratings say to. This is a team with serious stability issues.

SEC Odds: Everyone Else

SEC odds OLE

Arkansas Razorbacks

KJ Jefferson returns as a first-team All-SEC candidate. Despite he and top running back Raheim “Rocket” Sanders returning to Fayetteville, the Razorbacks return just the 90th-most roster production offensively (55%). OC Kendall Briles left for TCU and DC David Duggan was fired after the season, so Sam Pittman brought on Maryland OC Dan Enos and UCF DC Travis Williams to take the reigns. The Hogs avoid the top four projected teams in the SEC East, but draw a stretch in which they play at LSU, a neutral-site rivalry with Texas A&M, at Ole Miss, at Alabama, and Mississippi State off a bye.

Auburn Tigers

In comes Hugh Freeze to head a directionless Auburn program decimated by culture issues the past few seasons. Michigan State starting QB Peyton Thorne transferred in after spring ball along with a host of talented players. The Tigers’ transfer class ranks fourth nationally (second in the SEC) and features a trio of strong starters along the offensive line. However, Auburn lacks the top-end talent to truly compete in the SEC West this season. I make them for 6.4 wins thanks to a kind non-conference slate of UMass, Cal, Samford (FCS), and New Mexico State.

Mississippi State Bulldogs

New head coach Zach Arnett begins 2023 in an impossible situation. Though an assistant at Mississippi State, he appears to be leaving behind the Mike Leach offensive system, hiring on App State OC Kevin Barbay. Quarterback Will Rogers is one of the most productive veterans in the FBS, but his passing production from last year’s 9-4 squad may suffer under the new system. Just four starters on defense return, a unit that ranked 39th in points per drive. However, upkeeping offensive production is key in Starkvegas – the Bulldogs averaged just 14.5 points per game in losses last year (37.1 in wins!).

Missouri Tigers

While the class won’t garner as much attention as other transfer classes in the SEC, Missouri did a nice job bringing in needed talent. They landed offensive lineman Cam’Ron Johnson from Houston, one of the top FCS transfers in tackle Marcellus Johnson, big play threat Theo Wease from Oklahoma, and quarterback Jake Garcia. They return over 80% of roster production on both sides of the ball, although top receiver Dominic Lovett exited for Georgia. Mizzou handles Kansas State, LSU, and Tennessee at home and avoids Alabama, Texas A&M, and either Mississippi school from the West. The Tigers are truly a wild card this season, highly dependent on how well the defense plays. I make them for 6.0 wins, although they’re favored by more than one score just once against Power Five competition.

Ole Miss Rebels

Quinshon Judkins may be one of the top 10 returning offensive players this season. He’ll again be featured in the Ole Miss offense after leading the SEC in rushing a year ago. The Rebels also bolstered their receiving corps with UTSA’s Zakhari Franklin and Charlotte’s Tre Harris. However, the success of this team falls squarely on the shoulders of its quarterback(s). Incumbent Jaxson Dart only took the team so far and the room is muddied by Spencer Sanders and Will Howard, both of whom transferred in this offseason. Thanks to the fourth-hardest schedule – one that features games at Tulane, Alabama, and Georgia – Ole Miss may be better than its record indicates come December.

South Carolina Gamecocks

South Carolina brought in Dowell Loggains to head the offense after losing Marcus Satterfield to Nebraska. Satterfield was far from beloved in Columbia, taking the chief blame for 23-10 and 38-6 losses to Missouri and Florida, respectively. Talented but inconsistent QB Spencer Rattler returns, but loses his top three offensive weapons in Marshawn Lloyd (USC), Jaheim Bell (Florida State), and Josh Vann (NFL). They also lost their top defensive players to both the portal and the NFL, leaving a lot of gaps open for the Gamecocks. Thanks to that and the most difficult schedule in the country (UNC, Clemson outside of conference play, at Texas A&M, Georgia, and Tennessee), South Carolina projects for just 5.9 wins in 2023.

Vanderbilt Commodores

Could Vanderbilt go bowling for the first time since 2018? Perhaps. The Commodores play the third-easiest schedule in the SEC and get two bye weeks after October 14. Fifteen starters return for Vandy, although leading rushers Ray Davis and Mike Wright do not. They project to be favored in just three games and never are shorter than a touchdown underdog. However, last season’s team bit Kentucky and Florida in back-to-back weeks as 17.5- and 14-point underdogs, respectively. Toward the back half of its schedule, Vanderbilt could put up fights against South Carolina or Auburn, should either turn in the season early or underestimate the Commodores.

SEC All-Transfer Team

QB: Devin Leary (NC State to Kentucky), Walker Howard (LSU to Ole Miss)
RB: Brian Battie (USF to Auburn), Logan Diggs (Notre Dame to LSU)
WR: Zakhari Franklin (UTSA to Ole Miss), Dominic Lovett (Missouri to Georgia), Tre Harris (Louisiana Tech to Ole Miss)
TE: CJ Dippre (Maryland to Alabama)
OT: Marques Cox (Northern Illinois to Kentucky), Gunner Britton (Western Kentucky to Auburn)
IOL: Cam’Ron Johnson (Houston to Missouri), Victor Crune (Washington to Ole Miss), Micah Mazzccua (Baylor to Florida)

DL: Justin Rogers (Kentucky to Auburn), CamRon Jackson (Memphis to Florida), Jordan Jefferson (West Virginia to LSU), Ovie Oghoufo (Texas to LSU)
LB: Antonio Grier Jr. (USF to Arkansas), Omar Speights (Oregon State to LSU), Trezmen Marshall (Georgia to Alabama)
CB: Zy Alexander (Southern FCS to LSU), Denver Harris (Texas A&M to LSU)
SAF: Al Walcott (Baylor to Arkansas), RJ Moten (Michigan to Florida)

Top Difference Makers To Know

Quinshon Judkins, RB, Ole Miss: As a true freshman, Judkins led the SEC in rushing with over 1,500 yards and 16 TDs. He shared the backfield with five-star transfer Zach Evans, but managed to edge him out with a 65-35 split in carries. Ole Miss’ quarterback room is a mess, muddied by three players capable of starting, but not one being a home run pick. Despite an influx of receiving talent via the transfer portal, expect the Rebels to be run-centric around Judkins.

Jyaire Shorter, WR, Auburn: The North Texas transfer saw limited targets with the Mean Green, but could prove to be one of the most electrifying players in the SEC. Shorter scored 11 touchdowns on just 23 receptions, tallying in a ridiculous 27.3 yards per reception. He appears to be among the Tigers’ starting three or four receivers, giving new QB Thorne a target capable of taking the top off defenses.

Maason Smith & Harold Perkins, LSU: LSU shored up its secondary with a ridiculously talented trio of transfers, but the real disruptors for the Tigers come in the front seven. Smith and Perkins present one of the best one-two punches anywhere in the country. Smith missed last year with an injury, but stands 6-foot-6 and 292 pounds. Perkins tallied 7.5 sacks and 14 QB hits at linebacker in 2022 and could contend for multiple national awards.

Kool-Aid McKinstry, CB, Alabama: McKinstry projects to be a first-round NFL Draft pick this coming season. He broke up 15 passes – the most nationally – and picked off another. He benefits from the SEC lacking in top-to-bottom QB talent this coming season, but will be asked to defend some of the nation’s best receivers.

Coaching & Coordinator Changes In The SEC

SEC odds AUB

Most Impactful Hires

Hugh Freeze, HC, Auburn: Freeze is experienced in the SEC, formerly coaching at Ole Miss. He took Liberty to new heights during its transition into the FBS, putting a strong emphasis on defense. Without a glut of offensive talent – but with some strong bodies up front – expect Auburn to follow the Liberty route and rely on a stiff front seven to win ballgames.

Liam Coen, OC, Kentucky: Coen led Kentucky to all-time program highs offensively in 2021. He took a year as the OC for the Rams before returning to Lexington this season. In that gap year, the Wildcats fell from 15th in points per drive to 95th, despite having largely the same cast of players. With Leary in town, Coen should return Kentucky to a top-30 offense.

Austin Armstrong, DC, Florida: Armstrong is one of the most highly-regarded young defensive minds in the country. At just 29 years old, he becomes the youngest coordinator at the Power Five level, being hired away from Southern Miss. His conducting of the defense is pivotal for a Gators team that may struggle offensively.

Pete Golding, DC, Ole Miss: The impact of Golding’s hire goes far beyond the field. It’s extremely rare to see an assistant under Saban leave for an equal job – in that, they didn’t get hired up to be a head coach or to the NFL. Kiffin successfully raided the Alabama pantry, potentially setting a new precedent in the SEC. It was the first of two blows to the Alabama staff, who also missed out on Armstrong to Florida.

The Rest

  • Zach Arnett, HC, Mississippi State (DC)
  • Tommy Rees, OC, Alabama (Notre Dame OC)
  • Dan Enos, OC, Arkansas (Maryland OC)
  • Philip Montgomery, OC, Auburn (Tulsa HC)
  • Mike Bobo, OC, Georgia (offensive analyst)
  • Kevin Barbay, OC, Mississippi State (Appalachian State OC)
  • Kirby Moore, OC, Missouri (Fresno State OC)
  • Dowell Loggains, OC, South Carolina (Arkansas TEs)
  • Joey Hazle, OC, Tennessee (QBs coach)
  • Kevin Steele, DC, Alabama (Miami DC)
  • Travis Williams, DC, Arkansas (UCF DC)
  • Ron Roberts, DC, Auburn (Baylor DC)
  • Matt Brock, DC, Mississippi State (defensive assistant)

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