Ole Miss Rebels at Memphis Tigers
TV: ABC; Line: Memphis -6; Over/Under: 68
Saturday, Aug. 31 at 12 p.m.; Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium; Memphis, Tenn.
Nobody looks like a bigger threat to Tennessee football’s claim as an elite program than in-state programs, and the Memphis Tigers may have the top football program in the state. The expectations for them entering the year are through the roof, potentially their best team ever, and they get to play another SEC team to open the season.
Memphis will face Matt Luke’s Ole Miss Rebels, who lost five straight games down the stretch of last season to miss a bowl and now have lost their quarterback, Jordan Ta’amu. Yes, morale is low in Oxford, and it’s not a good time for this rivalry to renew.
Ole Miss is still an SEC program, though, and has a ton of talent, so there are expectations for them to be competitive in this game. Will it happen, though? Or will the Tigers start things off right in the quest to prove they are the top Group of Five team on the season.
The Rebels are the SEC, and Luke is an offensive genius. But Mike Norvell is also an offensive genius, and this is his first year having his players with a ton of experience. That combination is a deadly one, and it will lead to Memphis covering. And there’s no way this game isn’t a shootout. Take the over with ease.