College Football Odds, Picks for Auburn vs. Georgia: Saturday SEC Betting Preview

College Football Odds, Picks for Auburn vs. Georgia: Saturday SEC Betting Preview article feature image

Pictured: Robby Ashford. (Photo by Michael Chang/Getty Images)

Auburn vs. Georgia Odds

Saturday, Oct. 8
3:30 p.m. ET
Auburn Odds
-110o / -110u
Georgia Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

"The Deep South's Oldest Rivalry" will have its 127th meeting on Saturday afternoon, as the Auburn Tigers try to take down the Georgia Bulldogs between the hedges.

This series is the second-most played rivalry in FBS, trailing only Minnesota vs. Wisconsin.

Auburn and Georgia first played each other in 1892, eight months before "The South's Oldest Rivalry" (North Carolina vs. Virginia).

That first meeting was organized by Charles Herty and George Petrie, the two founders and head coaches of the respective football programs who had been grad school classmates at Johns Hopkins.

Auburn won that first game 10-0 and legend says it was also when the Auburn cheer "War Eagle" originated.

Now, 130 years later, Georgia leads the all-time series 62-56-2 and is currently on a five-game winning streak. In fact, the Bulldogs have won 14 of the past 17 meetings, and Auburn has not won in Athens since 2005.

Auburn has a laundry list of issues it needs to figure out, but after Georgia's close call against Missouri last week, are the Tigers worth backing as 30-point underdogs on the road?

Auburn Tigers

It's the first week of October and Bryan Harsin is still the head coach of the Auburn Tigers.

I mention that because it wouldn't be a shock for that to no longer be the case in the near future. Harsin's exit feels more like a when, not if, with each passing week, and last week was no different.

The Tigers held a 17-0 lead over LSU in the second quarter, but proceeded to give up 21 unanswered points to lose the game. That marked the fifth consecutive SEC game in which Auburn has had a double-digit lead. Yet somehow, the Tigers are just 1-4 in those games.

Auburn moved the ball well against LSU and outgained the Tigers on yards per play 6.3 to 3.6.

The defense also had a great showing, holding two LSU quarterbacks to a combined 10-of-26 passing. The defense held LSU to just 5-for-15 on third-down attempts, but it didn't matter much because the offense turned it over four times.

Quarterback Robby Ashford has struggled in the passing game and is completing just 54.1% of his passes. He's also logged three interceptions to match his three touchdowns.

I can't see him having a breakout game against the No. 1 Defensive Passing Success Rate team in the country, but in fairness, he has done better than T.J. Finley.

Georgia Bulldogs

It's the Georgia Bulldogs, the reigning national champions. I don't have to tell you much about this team, but there are a few things to take notice of prior to this matchup against Auburn.

The Bulldogs have experienced a bit of an injury bug this season. Running back Andrew Paul got hurt before the season started, receiver AD Mitchell hasn't played in nearly a month and running back Kenny Mcintosh suffered a quad injury against Kent State.

Receivers Arian Smith and Ladd McConkey are also hurt, and the Bulldogs' best defensive lineman, Jalen Carter, left the Missouri game with an MCL injury.

Georgia is also without defensive back Javon Bullard due to an off-the-field incident, and head coach Kirby Smart didn't seem optimistic about inside linebacker Smael Mondon, who missed part of the Missouri game with an ankle injury.

Again, they are the Georgia Bulldogs, and I have no doubt there are talented players down the depth chart who can make an impact. But the unfamiliarity on both sides of the ball can cause errors and issues.

Georgia is third in the SEC in both scoring and total offense. Stetson Bennett has gotten even better since his national title campaign last year. Bennett is completing 69% of his passes and has racked up 1,536 passing yards with five touchdowns and just one interception.

On defense, Georgia picked up right where it left off last year as one of the best units in the nation. The Bulldogs lead the conference and rank fourth nationally in scoring defense, giving up an average of just 10.8 points per game. They're outscoring opponents 195-54 to start the year.

However, some eyebrows have begun to rise over the past two weeks.

Through their first three games, opponents combined for a total of just 10 points against the Bulldogs. It seemed as if the defense had somehow improved from last year.

However, in the previous two weeks, Georgia has given up 22 points to both Kent State and Missouri. And this wasn't just garbage time scoring, as Missouri went to halftime up 16-6. Kent State was down just two points, 12-10, with 11 minutes left in the second quarter and went to halftime down 13.

If Georgia leaves that door open for a rival Auburn team and a head coach who may very well be coaching for his job, the Bulldogs may not find that 14-point fourth-quarter comeback win like they did against Missouri.

Auburn vs. Georgia Matchup Analysis

Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Auburn and Georgia match up statistically:

Auburn Offense vs. Georgia Defense
Rush Success7814
Line Yards1067
Pass Success7818
Pass Blocking**6178
Finishing Drives10912
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Georgia Offense vs. Auburn Defense
Rush Success948
Line Yards1890
Pass Success1445
Pass Blocking**2511
Finishing Drives32104
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Pace of Play / Other
PFF Tackling3025
PFF Coverage398
SP+ Special Teams485
Seconds per Play26.6 (69)29.1 (115)
Rush Rate57.4% (41)47.1% (104)
Data via (CFBD), FootballOutsiders, SP+, Pro Football Focus and SportSource Analytics.

Auburn vs. Georgia Betting Pick

The Tigers have had severe issues maintaining leads, but I don't see that being a problem here.

This Auburn team has been awful, but Ashford has been a significant improvement over Finley, and I think the Tigers will improve even more this week.

Auburn has made serious changes to its depth chart on both sides of the ball.

On offense, Kameron Stutts is now the starting left guard, Brandon Council takes over at center and Alec Jackson steps in at right guard. This current offensive line is a result of starting center Tate Johnson's elbow injury, and the unit had success last week against LSU.

The injury to Eku Leota forced the defense to shift to a 4-2-5 alignment, and Derick Hall is now the lone edge rusher in the starting lineup. These changes come as a result of injuries, but I think they present an opportunity that could benefit this team, as it'll show a new look to Georgia.

Our Action Network projections make Georgia a 25-point favorite in this game. Given the current number of +29.5, Auburn's new look and Georgia's defensive struggles of late, I'm holding my nose and taking the points in this one.

Pick: Auburn +28 or better

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