Alabama at Tennessee Odds & NCAA Football Preview

Posted by Peter Boysen on October 11, 2016 in

The Tennessee Volunteers come off a double overtime setback at Texas A&M to host the top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide. Despite the loss, the Vols still hold the #9 ranking in the polls, though, and they have already beaten Florida and Georgia, showing the ability to come back from adversity and win tough games. This represents Tennessee’s best chance to knock off the Crimson Tide in years and give Butch Jones’ squad the bounceback they need from that tough game down in College Station. Take a look at our college football odds  for this weekend’s games.

Alabama at Tennessee Odds & NCAA Football Preview

When: Saturday, October 15, 2016, 3:30pm ET
Where: Neyland Stadium, Knoxville, TN
TV: CBS
Radio: Alabama Crimson Tide Sports Network / Vol Network from IMG
Live Stream: SEC Network Plus
NCAAF Odds: Alabama (-13)

 

Why should you bet on the Volunteers?

Tennessee can win this game if they practice ball security. They turned the ball over seven times — a school record — in their loss to Texas A&M. In 2015, they gained 132 yards on the ground against that ironclad Crimson Tide defense, and Tennessee will have Jalen Hurd back, giving them three elite tailbacks who can carry the ball. However, Tennessee needs to spread the field with wideouts Jauan Jennings and Josh Malone, which means that quarterback Joshua Dobbs must throw with accuracy, avoiding turnovers. Getting some big shots down the field will loosen up the Alabama D for the running attack. Finally, Tennessee can win if they get a big start. They trailed in just about all of their wins this year: 13 points to Appalachian state, 21 points to Florida and Texas A&M, and 17 points to Georgia. Alabama will not allow that sort of comeback.

Why should you put your money on the Crimson Tide?

An Alabama victory will follow a solid and relentless defensive effort. They provide intense pass rush and they take the ball away. Their defensive unit has strength, speed and considerable depth. If they can force Tennesee into a lot of third-and-long situations, and then pressure Dobbs into some interceptions, this will turn into a long day for the Volunteer faithful.

When the Tide have the ball, they must contend with defensive ends Derek Barnett and Jonathan Allen, as well as linebacker Tim Williams. They can bring pass rush in a hurry, and they can also bottle up the run. If the Tide find balance between the running game (Joshua Jacobs and Damien Harris average better than eight yard per carry, and Tennessee is only 10th in the SEC in run defense) and the passing game featuring the terrific arm of Jalen Hurts, they will dominate the action in this game.

Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction

I like the Tide to win this game. However, I don’t think that a two-touchdown line makes a lot of sense. Tennessee has too much talent to suffer this type of blowout at home at this point of the season. I predict a 31-20 Tide win (but a Vol cover).