Week 8 in the SEC features a traditional rivalry between Tennessee and Alabama in Tuscaloosa, another sneaky-fun rivalry between LSU and Ole Miss in Oxford and a hinge game in Fayetteville between Auburn and Arkansas that will determine which way the once-dominant Tigers are heading down the homestretch.

How will it all shake out this weekend? Let's make some picks straight up and against the spread and keep the hot streak against the number going as we pick Week 8 in the SEC.

Record straight up: 51-12 (6-1 last week)
Record against the spread: 35-17-2 (6-1 last week)
*Games without lines are not counted in the ATS record.

Main Course

No. 24 LSU at Ole Miss (+6.5)

  • SportsLine game forecaster
  • LSU has an identity now
  • Ole Miss can stress undisciplined defenses
  • This means something to Tiger coach Ed Orgeron

The Magnolia Bowl between LSU and Ole Miss might not seem exciting on paper since the Tigers have suddenly found a spark and the Rebels are sputtering through a transition year. Make no mistake, though, this game means a lot to both fan bases and LSU coach Ed Orgeron (who once held the same title at Ole Miss). Led by the conference's top passer in Shea Patterson (357.2 YPG), receiver A.J. Brown (113 YPG) and an offense that is tough to slow down, the Rebels can stress defenses that play undisciplined football. LSU played that way for the majority of the season, but the last two weeks has proven that the Tigers of old are back. This one will be close for a while, but Tiger linebacker Devin White and his crew will force some mistakes late and the offense will do enough to pull away and cover a surprisingly tight line. Pick: Tigers (-6.5)

Strong Cocktail

No. 21 Auburn at Arkansas (+15.5)

Auburn coach Gus Malzahn is back on the hot seat after blowing a 20-point lead thanks to ultra-conservative play-calling last weekend at LSU, and this game against Arkansas will determine which direction this team is headed down the stretch. I'm betting on them getting things figured out. Good, athletic defenses can shut down Auburn and force them into predictable play calling, but Arkansas' defense is neither good nor athletic. Auburn will get back to its old ways, run the ball effectively and wear down an Arkansas defense that got pounded by Alabama a week ago en route to a win and a relatively easy cover. On the flip side, nobody has doubts about a Tigers' defense that will rattle Razorbacks' quarterback Cole Kelley -- who will be starting in place of the injured Austin AllenPick: Tigers (-15.5)

Tennessee at No. 1 Alabama (-34.5)

  • SportsLine game forecaster
  • Tennessee is a complete lost
  • Alabama's defense is suffocating
  • There's more embarrassment coming on Rocky Top 

The last time Tennessee beat Alabama, the iPhone hadn't been released. Yes, it's been that long. A decade of misery will continue this weekend in Tuscaloosa when the Crimson Tide stays hot against a downtrodden Volunteers program that has no identity, no hope and a lame duck coach who has virtually no shot of staying employed beyond this season. Tennessee hasn't scored a touchdown in 10 quarters, hasn't scored a touchdown from inside the 5-yard line since the first quarter of a Week 2 victory over Indiana State (yes, John Kelly does still exist on the Vols' roster despite coach Butch Jones forgetting about him in these situations) and has the worst red zone scoring percentage in the conference (73.68 percent). Will they find success against Alabama's defense? Of course not. The Crimson Tide will shut the Vols down, its punishing offense will turn the game sideways early and it'll stay that way late. Pick: Crimson Tide (-34.5)


Kentucky at Mississippi State (-10.5)

  • SportsLine game forecaster
  • Dan Mullen quietly has done a tremendous job
  • Bulldogs have plenty to play for
  • Kentucky's defense won't be able to hang on

Does anybody want to take notice of the job Dan Mullen is doing with Mississippi State? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? The Bulldogs are averaging 442.7 yards per game, 31.8 points per game and Mullen knows how to get the most out of quarterback Nick Fitzgerald and running back Aeris Williams. I know Kentucky is sitting at 5-1 and the one loss was a direct result of alignment issues in the defensive backfield on two separate occasions vs. Florida. Its defense gives up 5.63 yards per play, which doesn't bode well for the Wildcats. Pick: Bulldogs (-10.5)

Side dish

Idaho at Missouri (-15.5)

Missouri is a favorite. No seriously, Missouri is a favorite in real-life college football. Granted, it's just over two touchdowns at home over 2-4 Idaho, but hey, at least it's something. Quarterback Drew Lock will have success against a Vandals defense that actually does play solid pass defense, and allow the Tigers to pull away late. Pick: Tigers (-15.5)