We explore the Auburn Georgia odds spread money line and game pick ahead of Saturday’s college football slate.
Auburn Tigers at Georgia Bulldogs (-14)
A classic SEC showdown is set for Saturday night (7 p.m., ESPN) as the 24th-ranked Auburn Tigers (6-3) meet the fifth-ranked Georgia Bulldogs (8-1) “between the hedges” at Sanford Stadium. Georgia was set as a strong 14-point favorite at most sportsbooks, with the betting total hovering at 52 points.
Consecutive losses to Mississippi State and Tennessee had some wondering whether Auburn would fire the recently-extended Gus Malzahn, but he’s been given a vote of confidence by athletic director Allen Greene. However, a close shave at home with Texas A&M, off a bye week no less, suggests that the Tigers aren’t playing with any more desire than they were at the start of this disappointing season. Now they’ll play their third true road game of the season at a venue where they’ve lost five straight by an average of 20.6 points.
Jarrett Stidham, one of the reasons behind Auburn’s sub-par season, will be hard-pressed to lead his offense down the field against Georgia’s 11th-rated scoring defense (16.4 points allowed per game). He’s completed just over 60 percent of his passes while averaging only 7.4 yards per attempt with a 10-to-4 TD-to-INT ratio. The Bulldogs can be a little soft against the run (37th by yards allowed per game), but JaTarvious Whitlow (5.9 yards per carry on 109 attempts) isn’t the kind of player that can put a team on his back.
Jake Fromm, second to only Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa in his conference, should face little resistance from the Tigers’ 58th-ranked pass stoppers. Fromm has been smart with the football this year, completing two out of every three passes while averaging 9.2 yards per attempt. He’s tossed just four INTs compared to 17 TDs. And Georgia’s rush offense, led by Elijah Holyfield and D’Andre Swift, is second to none in the SEC at 233.8 yards per game.
The Bulldogs are at the end of the most grueling part of their 2018 schedule, as they lost at LSU but beat Florida and Kentucky, all ranked conference opponents and all away from Sanford Stadium. Returning home should be a real boost for this talented Georgia team that just clinched a spot in the SEC title game with the Crimson Tide (Dec. 1 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta). It seems unlikely that Georgia will get caught looking ahead at a game so far in advance, so expect the Bulldogs to take care of business and cruise to a comfortable win at home this week.
Prediction: Georgia wins, 34-14
The play: Georgia -14