Kentucky vs Penn State -6.5 (o/u 47)
At 9-3 in the SEC, Kentucky has to have been one of the biggest surprises this season. Two of the team’s losses were to powerhouse teams, #5 Georgia 34-17 and #18 Mississippi State 20-14. Note: Mississippi State had the nation’s top scoring defense at 12 PPG. There really is no secret to Kentucky’s success. It all boiled down to a great defense that was able to compensate for an anemic offense. The offense ended up the season ranked 191st in the nation with slightly over 366 TYPG. There was one shining star on offense in RB Benny Snell, who ran the ball 263 times for 1,305 yards and 14 TDs. As for the defense, they limited opponents to 16.3 PPG (8th in the nation) and 332.2 YPG (21st in the nation). Those are solid numbers in the SEC.
Penn State played good ball all season, proving to be one of the best teams in the nation. Two of the team’s three losses came at the hands of #7 Michigan in a blowout and a nail-biter to #6 Ohio State 27-26. The other loss was an unexplainable loss at home to a struggling Michigan State team 21-17. The offense started off scoring 55.5 PPG in the team’s first 4 outings. After that, they would struggle at times, scoring at 24 PPG over the remaining 8 games. The rushing offense was led by the duo of RB Miles Sanders and QB Trace McSorley, who combined for 1,946 yards and 20 TDs. The defense was strong enough to keep games close while giving only 354.9 YPG to finish 36th in the nation.
Prediction: Kentucky is not going to light up the scoreboard. In handicapping this game, one only has to decide if Penn State is going to be able to score against Kentucky’s defense. The fact Penn State only put up 24 PPG over its last 8 games is troubling. With that said, the time off favors Penn State and they should do just enough to cover the spread. Play Penn State -6.5