Putting this preview up 20 minutes before kick probably isn’t the best marketing strategy, but the information needed to write wasn’t provided until now. Here’s to an awesome game.
SEC Championship Game: No.6 Georgia vs. No.2 Auburn
This is the best game of the weekend by far. ESPN’s Football Power Index has an Auburn victory at a 50.5% of happening.
Jarrett Stidham has invoked a vertical passing game that Auburn hasn’t had in years. He’s completed 68.5% of his passes, averaging 9.09 yards an attempt. Darius Slayton’s been a big part of that. He’s only caught 22 balls all year, but is averaging 25.2 yards a catch and has five touchdowns. That calculates to a 22% touchdown rate!
The Auburn and Georgia defenses are practically identical. Auburn’s 1st in FEI, Georgia 3rd. Auburn gives up 3.3 yards per rush attempt, Georgia gives up 3.5 Both teams allow 5.7 yards per pass attempt, 3rd and 4th in the country. You can’t even throw screen passes on these teams.
They couldn’t be more equal. And this pick couldn’t be harder. The Bulldogs won’t be as unprepared as they were in November. It was a shockingly poor performance, with dropped punts and missed coverages. It was such an outlier of their season, that there’s no way it happens again. That makes things tougher for Auburn.
Even though Kerryon Johnson will play for the Tigers, it’s hard to say how effective he’ll be. He’s a massive part of their offense, and though Auburn dominated Georgia in every way earlier this year, having Johnson gives them a more equal distribution. Given that he’s a game-time decision, he’s probably not gonna be a 100%. Georgia’s defense will take advantage of that.
Again, this pick was excruciating, but I’m gonna go with the safest team. Right now, that’s Georgia.
Prediction: Georgia-28 Auburn-24