Every Wednesday right here you can read Across the South, where we’ll get into a different topic on the SEC, break down the biggest matchups of the previous week, preview the coming week’s slate, and talk about where things stand in the best conference in the land!
In this week’s edition, the SEC Championship is finally here. The stakes for this game have not been this high since 2012 when Alabama and Georgia faced off in a battle to see who went to the BCS National Championship where Alabama came on top. With the Dawgs up to six point favorites, can Alabama topple Georgia once again?
The first thing that needs to be acknowledged when looking at the SEC Championship matchup is this: Georgia is the better football team. You can frame the game any way you want and try to dissect how Alabama could win, but the talent of this Dawgs team is undeniable.
Down the stretch, Georgia has been dominant and has answered every challenge that’s come its way. It destroyed Ole Miss in a top-ten matchup, it went to Knoxville and blew out the Vols in one of the most difficult places to play in the country, and it took down Missouri without star tight end Brock Bowers.
This is a team that has won 29 games in a row for a reason. They six point spread is beyond fair.
But giving Alabama no chance would be discounting the strides the Crimson Tide team, and its quarterback, have made over the course of the season.
Since Jalen Milroe’s benching, he has been one of the best quarterbacks in the nation and Alabama has improved weekly. This matchup against the Bulldogs will be the toughest test yet, though.
In order to give Alabama any chance, Milroe will have to play the game of his life. Alabama cannot afford to lose the turnover battle. It cannot afford Jalen Milroe taking critical third down sacks. Most importantly, Alabama must keep its composure and avoid forfeiting yards due to foolish pre and post snap penalties.
This is also a matchup between two elite defenses, and whichever unit proves better could end up being the deciding factor. By all accounts, Brock Bowers is going to play. Though it gets lost in Alabama’s victory, Bowers had a huge game against the Tide the last time these two teams faced off in this game, catching 10 passes for 139 yards and a touchdown.
Stopping Bowers could prove to be an X-factor in this one.
Will Georgia be too much, or can Nick Saban get another victory over Kirby Smart?
Ultimately, when making a prediction, I’m inclined to think the Tide come up short in this one. But by no means do I expect a blowout in Atlanta.
Prediction: Georgia 31, Alabama 27