Well, Vanderbilt ended its 26-game SEC losing streak last Saturday with a win at Kentucky. Can the Commodores string together back-to-back conference wins for the first time since 2018? Let’s see what the writers think!
No, I don’t think this is going to go as well as last week. It’s not that I think Florida is a juggernaut — they’re not — but Vanderbilt will probably be... less inspired now that they’re not fighting to end a long losing streak. As such, this is the first time in a while that I’ve picked Vanderbilt to not cover. Yeah, it’s going to be cold; no, I don’t think this will matter so much.
The Pick: Florida 35, Vanderbilt 17
The SEC Upset Pick of the Week: I like ARKANSAS (+2.5) to beat Ole Miss.
Andrew VU ‘04
I honestly don’t have a real good feel for what the outcome of this game will be. Had Kentucky smoked us, I would have predicted a similar drubbing by a pretty cromulent Jortsville Jorts team this week. Of course, The New Bald Coach and OC Joey Lynch dialed up a one two running punch of Wright and The Hypothesis, our run D played well, and our DBs were able to keep up with UK’s WRs now that they no longer have to wear tinfoil hats under their helmets.
Add to that the fact that this will be a cold weather road game for just clinched bowl eligible Jorts squad, and I could see this turning into a run-heavy game on both sides. Does that mean we freeze out the Jorts and start talking APR?
Probably not. It does mean it will likely be a more low scoring affair, though. Give me Vanderbilt and the points (+14.5), but know that I’ve been getting my ass handed to me in the Pick ‘Em contest this year.
The Pick: Jortsville 27 - Vanderbilt 20
The SEC Upset Pick of the Week: Screw it, let’s get weird... UMASS is taking down Aggie at The Grode Dome! Jimbo is getting that $97 mil retirement buyout come hell or high water.
Everything about this game screams low scoring and ugly. The weather will be a little better than last week without precipitation. I just have a sneaking suspicion that we are in for shenanigans. Whether it is Mike Wright or Anthony Richardson, one of these QBs is going to make some ridiculous plays.
The Vanderbilt defense is the wildcard. If they replicate last week's effort, I think they can force some turnovers and get some big stops. I do not know if it will be enough.
Vanderbilt 24, Florida 27
The SEC Upset Pick of the Week: Uh, I don't see one happening? I am about to talk myself into taking Vandy just to have an upset pick. Screw it. Us. Vanderbilt 28, Florida 24! ATFD
Florida is hot, but Vanderbilt is hotter. Just look at it this way, Florida last beat a ranked SEC team on the road on September 29, 2018. That was 1,511 days ago. You know when Vanderbilt last did that? SEVEN DAYS AGO BABY! HAIL PINMAN! GIVE ME THE COMMODORES!
Also, Florida has always seemed like the type of team to be overconfident and give up early if things don’t go their way both in the season and in a game. We usually get out to a decent start, so I think we can build on that. Since that’s pretty anecdotal and vibes-based as far as analysis goes, I’ll also say that Florida’s run defense is worse than Kentucky, who we cooked on the ground. Plus, Florida relies pretty heavily on the run which plays to our defensive strengths especially since this will be Florida’s first real “cold game” of the year with temperatures hovering in the forties; that could help neutralize their passing game enough that we can win an ugly one on the ground. I’m still riding a massive high from last Saturday, so take this with a grain of salt, but I feel good that the Gators won’t make it out of The Bank alive.
The Pick: Vanderbilt 17 - Florida 13
The SEC Upset Pick of the Week: I most want to see Kentucky upset Georgia for the chaos and to make our win look better (you know, so we can build up our playoff resumé) but that’s very unlikely as is ETSU upsetting Mississippi State to make me feel better about that thing that happened last year. I’m actually going to take Western Kentucky in a second half blowout against Auburn because Auburn is a weird, weird team in the middle of a bad, bad season. They will then, OF COURSE, go on to win the Iron Bowl in the (second) most unbelievable fashion you will ever see because that’s just what this season is for those two schools. Yep, WKU by 17 but then Auburn by a field goal or so.