Week 13 – Kentucky at Tennessee

Posted Nov 22, 2012

Week 13 Fearless Prediction – Kentucky at Tennessee

Kentucky (2-9) at Tennessee (4-7) Nov. 24, 12:21, SEC Network

Here's The Deal: It's the lame duck game for two programs about to undergo a coaching search coming off of ugly and disappointing seasons. The Vols appeared to be okay with their yearly end-of-the-season layups against Vanderbilt and Kentucky to close things out, but instead they picked the wrong time to come up with the biggest clunker of the season, getting blown away by Vanderbilt to ensure a losing season. Derek Dooley was soon fired, and now the promising team with the high-octane passing game is looking to avoid the unthinkable – an 0-8 SEC slate.

Kentucky's fun was over long ago, embarking on a brutal eight-game losing streak before finally getting a little bit of relief last week against Samford. The lone win this season turned out to be the only loss for Kent State, but that's been it with blowout after blowout thanks to a miserable offense and not enough defense to pick up the slack. A win at Tennessee won't matter, but it'll keep the Cats from a winless conference season.

Why Kentucky Might Win: What kind of a mindset will the Vols have? There were problems all season long, but at least there was the hope that things would turn around just in time to finish with a bowl appearance. Now that that's gone, and now that Dooley is out, there's nothing to play for except for the offseason. The UK offense might be awful, but the Tennessee defense has been equally bad, ranking last in the SEC in yards and points allowed with no pass rush and little production from the secondary. Tennessee has allowed 41 points or more in six of the last seven games, with the lone exception a 38-35 loss to South Carolina.

Why Tennessee Might Win: Yes, the Tennessee is horrible, but Kentucky's offense just doesn't work. In SEC play, the Cats have scored more than 17 points just once in a 29-24 loss to Georgia. The passing game is non-existent with no big plays down the field. The Vols can take chances with their secondary for the first time in a long time this year to load up on the run; Kentucky won't be able to take advantage. On the other side, Kentucky's secondary get torched for big plays on a regular basis, meaning it should be a huge day for …

What To Watch Out For: Tyler Bray, who was awful against Vanderbilt completing just 11-of-29 passes for 104 yard and a touchdown with two picks. Is he going to stay or is he taking off for the NFL a year early? With his top targets Justin Hunter and Cordarrelle Patterson almost certain to go to the pros as juniors, and with a new regime coming in, Bray might not want to stick around. However, it wouldn't be a bad thing to close out on a high note after last week's problems. Red hot in the three weeks before the Commodores, he put together an all-star caliber season with 30 touchdown passes and 3,319 yards, but he needs to keep the mistakes to a minimum after throwing four picks in the last two games against UK. He winged it around for 354 yards and two scores in the 2010 win, and last year he struggled completing just 15-of-38 passes for 215 yards and a score in the 10-7 loss.

What Will Happen: Which team will care more? They both will. Offensive coordinator Jim Chaney will come up with a good gameplan for the Vol attack and Bray will throw at will. Kentucky won't be able to keep up the pace.

CFN Prediction: Tennessee 41 … Kentucky 20
ATS Consultants Line (Click for more lines and picks) Tennessee -13 O/U: 61
Must Watch Rating (5 – Beware of Mr. Baker, 1 – Life of Pi): 2