This Saturday marks the final Saturday of September, and no longer will teams be able to say, “It’s early,” after this weekend.
Rivalry time in the South is starting too—Georgia visits Auburn at 3:30 for the Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry, LSU travels to Oxford for the Magnolia Bowl, Texas A&M and Arkansas square off in Arlington, and, of course, Florida comes to Kroger Field for the rivalry game that’s only viewed as a big-time rivalry game by the Kentucky Wildcats fans, as the Gators are one of their favorite teams to beat. Just look at the ticket prices when the game’s in Lexington compared to Gainesville.
Last week, I completely whiffed on all my predictions (except UK winning, but that wasn’t a bold one), but now it’s time for a bounce back. Here are three more bold predictions for Week 5:
1. Kentucky beats Florida
Lots of people are going to predict Florida will beat Kentucky on Saturday. After all, putting the past two years and 2018 aside, that’s what happened as reliably as sunrise and sunset since the 1980s, right? The Gators got rolled by Utah, but that was on the road against a legit, contending team, and they haven’t been troubled much since.
UK is 4-0, but the offense has been quite shaky. This seems destined to be the kind of game UK just barely loses thanks to a costly 4th-quarter mistake, but it also seems destined to be the one game of the year Stoops “bucks the expectations,” and the Cats get rewarded for four extremely physical, no-quit quarters.
Why not Kentucky? It’s not undoable.
2. Alabama struggles heavily with Mississippi State
The Mississippi State game is the one that the Crimson Tide often flex the most muscle in of all their SEC games, often winning 49-0 or something, but this year the cowbells will get in their heads, and it’ll be a four-quarter game. I won’t be surprised at all if the Tide only win by one possession and have to escape Starkville surviving a scare.
3. Vanderbilt will end Missouri’s undefeated ride
The Tigers are 4-0 after some thrilling home victories, but heading into their first road game against a Commodores squad that will really be trying to improve things after a 17-point home loss of squandered opportunities to Kentucky, Mizzou will stumble and take their first L. Not sure how, but I have a hunch that’ll be an unexpected upset.