Coming off a potentially crippling upset loss, the Georgia Bulldogs aim to rebound on Saturday when they host the Kentucky Wildcats in an SEC East battle. The nationally-televised contest kicks off at 6 p.m. ET from Sanford Stadium. Georgia (5-1, 2-1) saw its SEC title and College Football Playoff hopes dealt a serious blow last week when it was upset 20-17 at home by South Carolina as a three-touchdown favorite. The Bulldogs still have the SEC East title within reach, but they need to avoid a potential letdown against the Wildcats (3-3, 1-3), who overcame a 13-point deficit to beat Arkansas 24-20 last week. The Bulldogs are 25-point favorites and the over-under is 46.5 in the latest Georgia vs. Kentucky odds. Before finalizing your Kentucky vs. Georgia picks, look at the college football predictions from SportsLine senior analyst Josh Nagel.
A Nevada-based handicapper with more than 20 years of experience in the sports wagering industry, Nagel specializes in collegiate athletics and was SportsLine’s top college football analyst last year. Now, he’s in the midst of another strong season for SportsLine members. What’s more, he has had a sharp eye for the trajectory of these SEC programs, posting a record of 13-3 on picks involving the Wildcats or Bulldogs over the past two seasons.
In Week 4, Nagel advised SportsLine members that Georgia (-14.5) was getting a bit too much respect from oddsmakers in its crucial showdown with Notre Dame. The Irish kept it a one-score game most of the way, and the Bulldogs had to knock down a goal-line pass to preserve the 23-17 victory. Anyone who followed Nagel’s advice picked up another easy winner, and those who have consistently followed him are way up.
Now, he has zeroed in on Georgia vs. Kentucky from every angle and released another strong against the spread pick that he’s sharing over at SportsLine.
Nagel knows the Bulldogs will be motivated to set the tone for the rest of the season with a strong performance following their worst showing in recent memory. They came out flat against South Carolina and never fully recovered against the upset-minded Gamecocks. Even so, they scored the game-tying touchdown in the final minute, only to come up short in overtime when the normally reliable Rodrigo Blankenship missed a field goal to force a second extra period.
Jake Fromm threw for 295 yards, but was hampered by three interceptions. D’Andre Swift logged 113 yards on 23 carries with a touchdown. The Bulldogs allowed a season-high 20 points in the defeat, but their 12.3 average points allowed still ranks No. 7 in the country. They also boast the country’s No. 10-ranked offense with 505.2 yards per game and 38.5 points scored per contest.
The Bulldogs have dominated this series of late and won 34-17 last year at Kentucky with the SEC East title on the line. But they are far from assured of covering the Georgia vs. Kentucky spread Saturday against a team that is notoriously stubborn and finding creative ways to remain competitive.
Last week, Kentucky’s depth issues at quarterback resulted in receiver Lynn Bowden Jr. starting behind center. He accounted for three touchdowns, including a 24-yard run in the fourth quarter that held up as the difference. The junior finished with 196 yards on 24 carries while also completing 7-of-11 passes for 78 yards. A.J. Rose also picked up 90 rushing yards for the Wildcats, who finished with 418 yards of total offense.
The defense limited Arkansas to just seven second-half points and forced a turnover on downs on the final possession as the Razorbacks reached the Kentucky 15-yard line.
We can tell you Nagel is leaning over, and he’s also identified the critical factor that has him all over one side of the spread. He’s only sharing it at SportsLine.
Who wins Kentucky vs. Georgia? And what critical factor makes one side of the spread a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Kentucky vs. Georgia spread you should jump on Saturday, all from the seasoned expert who has hit 81 percent of his picks on these teams, and find out.