Tennessee football: Week 12 SEC and top 25 picks by Dean Zulkofske

Sep 26, 2020; Auburn, AL, USA; Fans cheer during the opening ceremonies before Auburn takes on Kentucky at Jordan-Hare Stadium in Auburn, Ala., on Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020. Mandatory Credit: Jake Crandall-USA TODAY NETWORK
Sep 26, 2020; Auburn, AL, USA; Fans cheer during the opening ceremonies before Auburn takes on Kentucky at Jordan-Hare Stadium in Auburn, Ala., on Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020. Mandatory Credit: Jake Crandall-USA TODAY NETWORK /

Here are Dean Zulkofske’s Week 12 Tennessee football Volunteers, SEC and top 25 picks.

Following a brief hiccup in the 2020 schedule, Tennessee football will take the field again this Saturday to face the Auburn Tigers at Jordan-Hare Stadium. The SEC, Big 10, and Big 12 are all represented on this Week 12 slate of games. Before we dive into the picks, check out how I did last week and how I’ve done overall this year.

Week 11 performance

Straight up: 3-0

Gambling picks: 3-3

  • 1-2 against the spread
  • 2-1 over/under

Overall performance for 2020

Straight up: 41-14

Gambling picks: 57-53

  • 27-28 against the spread
  • 30-25 over/under

A pretty eh week came from last Saturday but we’re still in the green overall in 2020. However, with a massive slate here in Week 12, that can all change. With the wide variety of games to pick from and how close our record has been, the tables can be absolutely flipped on Saturday. Let’s flip them in the right direction. Here are my Tennessee football, SEC and top 25 picks.

55. 840. 21. 887. Prediction

Florida -31.5; Over 67.5

What should jump off the page right away is this game features two defenses that don’t play much defense at all. Somehow, still, Kyle Trask isn’t being considered as a serious Heisman contender. With an absolutely massive performance against the Commodores this weekend, that’ll change. The Gators cover this huge spread with both teams doing their part to hit the over.

21. 817. 27. 844. Prediction

Arkansas +2.5; Under 64.5

Arkansas hasn’t gotten the better of LSU since 2015, and Saturday at home in Fayetteville they’ll finally get the win they’ve been looking for. Yes, the Razorbacks gave up an obscene 62 points to the Florida Gators last week, but the defense should have a nice rebound game against a Tigers offense that hasn’t stepped on the field since late October. Take the Hogs to win and the under.

813. 42. 812. Prediction. 21

Ohio State -20.5; Under 66.5

Former Tennessee football commitment Michael Penix Jr. has led the No. 9 Hoosiers to an undefeated 4-0 start, but Indiana’s streak will end this week. Justin Fields and the Buckeye’s offense shouldn’t keep this game close, but the three-touchdown spread will be tight at the end of four quarters. Let’s give No. 3 Ohio State the floor here, with both the spread and the total coming down to the wire.

26. 809. 21. 882. Prediction

Northwestern +8.5; Over 43.5

No, Wisconsin isn’t exactly on upset alert here, but a nine-point spread seems a bit much in a contest of unbeatens. The Wildcats defense has been stout enough to keep them close, even though the Badgers have scored more than 40 points in both of their games this season.  Look for Northwestern to cover and the over to hit in a game where Wisconsin is just the better team.

light. Related Story. Five reasons Vols could upset Auburn Tigers

829. Prediction. 18. 833. 52

Alabama -29.5; Over 57.5

The Crimson Tide might win this game by 40, and with Terry Wilson, Chris Rodriguez, and Asim Rose, Kentucky is bound to have someone to put points on the board. The bottom line is Alabama is on their way to win another SEC title and the Wildcats won’t be able to slow them down. Cash the Tide to cover and the over in Tuscaloosa.

814. Prediction. 14. 893. 33

Mississippi State +24.5; Over 44.5

There’s no question Georgia wins at home but could UGA’s quarterback problems prevent them from covering? They just might. It doesn’t seem likely that MSU finds a way to score more than twice, but MSU’s defense has actually held some teams in check this year despite the 41 points they gave up to Alabama. Georgia wins pretty easily, but 25 points are too many for Stetson Bennett and the Dawgs to cover.

20. 850. Prediction. 30. 822

Missouri -6.5; Under 56.5

Please don’t bet on this game. Will Muschamp is officially out as head coach of South Carolina, prompting one of their best players, defensive back Jaycee Horn, to opt-out of the remainder of the season. But Missouri is also not great at football in 2020, so who knows what team will show up on Saturday. Let’s say the presence of Larry Rountree and Nick Bolton will be enough for the Tigers.

815. Prediction. 30. 856. 27

Oklahoma State +7.5; Under 58.5

Historically, the Sooners dominate the all-time series between the two Oklahoma universities but that won’t be the story on Saturday. The Cowboys have been strong through six games with their only hiccup being an overtime loss to the Longhorns. Look for Mike Gundy to rely on running back Chuba Hubbard and find a way to upset the Sooners.

dark. Next. Five Vols to watch for at Auburn

21. 839. 35. 842. Prediction

Auburn -10.5; Over 50.5

If Tennessee football finds a way to win on the road, it’ll be a really close, hard-fought victory. However, if the Vols lose, it’ll be ugly. By now our guts should tell us the latter is more probable. The Tiger’s receiving core should be too much for a Vols secondary that hasn’t had its best stuff all season. Unfortunately, Tennessee football will drop to 2-5, but they’ll score enough to hit the over.