Saturday Selections: Week 12 SEC Football Picks Against the Spread

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Nov 1, 2014; Columbia, SC, USA; Tennessee Volunteers quarterback Joshua Dobbs (11) scrambles away from South Carolina Gamecocks linebacker Bryson Allen-Williams (4) in the first quarter at Williams-Brice Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

 Kentucky at Tennessee (-9.5), 3:00PM CT, SEC Network

In another case of two teams headed in opposite directions, the Tennessee Volunteers and Kentucky Wildcats will meet in Knoxville with bowl aspirations on the line. The game won’t get much attention nationally, but it is perhaps the most important game of the season for both teams.

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Tennessee picked up their first SEC win of the year in dramatic fashion two weeks ago against South Carolina. With two weeks off to prepare for the Wildcats, and riding the momentum that has come with the play of new starting quarterback Joshua Dobbs, it’s no wonder the Vols are favored to win again.

They need two in three games to reach the program’s first bowl game since Derek Dooley’s first year on campus. With games against Missouri and Vanderbilt left on the schedule, Tennessee could even pick up the program’s first winning season since Lane Kiffin was in charge. Yup.

At 5-5, Kentucky needs only one more win to reach bowl eligibility, but trips to UT and Louisville stand in the way. The Wildcats have lost four games in a row, and last week dropped a 63-31 laugher to Georgia. Kentucky will need to pull themselves up by the boot straps and make a stand over the next two games in order to pick up huge momentum for the program heading into 2015.

I think they will, and will reach bowl eligibility with an upset win on the road. But, even if they fall short, taking the 9.5-point underdog here seems like the right bet.

Kentucky 28, Tennessee 27

Next: Missouri at Texas A&M