Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Tennessee Volunteers – College Football, October 24, 2020
Alabama storms into Neyland Stadium with more than just a 4-0 record. After smacking around third-ranked Georgia, the Crimson Tide will arrive in Knoxville oozing with supreme confidence.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, Tennessee was embarrassed for the second straight weekend.
All signs are pointing toward Jeremy Pruitt collecting a third consecutive loss, the question is:
How deep are the Tide going to bury the Vols on Saturday?
This Alabama vs. Tennessee prediction aims to find out.
Alabama vs. Tennessee Odds
Forget about a money-line bet in the Alabama vs. Tennessee matchup. There’s no upside to coughing up -1450, and there’s no value in backing the Vols to win outright.
There seems to be merit in choosing one side to cover (more on that later), but don’t lose sight of the value lurking with the total. The game has gone “over” the total in each of the Crimson Tide’s first four games, and don’t forget that Tennessee just surrendered 34 points to Kentucky.
Crimson Tide Assessment
Starting with Nick Saban’s leadership at the top, and trickling down to the meteoric rise from Mac Jones under center, Alabama is unquestionably in the hunt to win the National Championship. Their defense is yet to resemble a typical Saban-coached group, but perhaps this unit turned the corner in the second half versus Georgia.
The Bulldogs were shutout in the final 30 minutes, and Stetson Bennett finished the game with three interceptions and a 45% completion rate. If Dylan Moses and company hit their stride, lookout.
Speaking of hitting their stride, how about Steve Sarkisian’s bunch?
Mac Jones has delivered three consecutive games of 400+ passing yards and Najee Harris leads the nation with 11 rushing TDs. Then you got an elite wideout in DeVonta Smith and a big-play waiting to happen in Jaylen Waddle.
Mac Jones is the first player in Alabama history with multiple 90-yard touchdown passes.— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 18, 2020
Jaylen Waddle's 90-yard Rec TD was his 3rd career catch of at least 80 yards. All of them went for TD.
Waddle has the most 80+ yard TDs in Alabama history. pic.twitter.com/YZAiBge0WP
Throw in John Metchie’s 24.9 yards per reception and a top-tier O-line – it’s not hard to see why this offense is moving like a roaring locomotive.
So much for all the hype about Jarrett Guarantano being a force this year in the SEC. The dude has thrown more picks than touchdowns during over his last two games is no longer guaranteed to be the starter.
Talk about a wishy-washy coach, this comes just days after Coach Pruitt said the following:
The Vols have a sturdy offensive line and a couple of talented running backs, but will game flow allow Pruitt to pound the rock on early downs? If the Tide get up early, Tennessee’s hand will be forced into flinging the pigskin around.
Whether that’s Guarantano, J.T. Shrout, or even freshman Harrison Bailey, that remains to be seen.
In terms of the defense, it’s too bad the Volunteers can’t throw Smokey into the mix and let him “hound” the quarterback. Tennessee has only been able to muster up eight sacks collectively through their first four games.
Alabama vs. Tennessee Pick
There’s nothing Tennessee’s defense can do to impede on Mac Jones’ progress, and this is an unlikely spot for Jarret Guarantano to suddenly settle into a groove.
In other words, those Rocky Top chants are going to fade away quickly Saturday at Neyland Stadium.
I like the Tide so much in this spot, I even included my Alabama vs. Tennessee prediction among my best college football bets this week.