NCAA Football Preview: Kentucky at South Carolina

NCAA Football Preview:  Kentucky at South Carolina

SEC football action at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia as South Carolina hosts Kentucky. Gamecocks 3-1 SU on the season but only 1-3 ATS. They had a tougher than expected time with Central Florida last week winning 28-25 and failing to cover as -7 point road favorites. Kentucky 1-3 SU/ATS in Mark Stoops first season at the Wildcats’ helm with their only win/cover coming against hapless Miami-Ohio.

Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops faces an uphill battle trying to get the basketball powerhouse competitive in the toughest football conference in the country. The Wildcats put together some winning seasons in the mid 2000’s but were 6-7 in 2010, 5-7 in 2011 and 2-10 last year. Kentucky needs to pick up the wins where they can–they have at least one more almost certain win on 11/2 against Alabama State in their homecoming game but the rest of the card is almost comical in it’s difficulty. They’ve already played two tough in state opponents (Western Kentucky and Louisville) along with Florida. They take on the Gamecocks at Williams Brice Stadium today and go from the frying pan into the fire next week hosting defending National Champion Alabama. Kentucky has been a horrible pointspread team in recent years 3-12 ATS in their last fifteen games. They’re also 5-14 ATS as an underdog since 2011 and 0-11 SU/ATS as an underdog between +10 and +21 points.

The Gamecocks though they were going to have to start backup Dylan Thompson at QB this week following an injury to starter Connor Shaw but he’s been upgraded to probable. That’s bad news for a Kentucky defense coming off a physical beatdown against Florida. The Gamecocks’ defense should also benefit from a step down in class after a tough run to start the season. Wildcats have been relatively competitive against the spread against the Gamecocks at Columbia (5-5 ATS L10) but this is just a horrible matchup for them here. Gamecocks should score at will and get the win and pointspread cover. We’ll also look for the ‘Over’ trend in the series to continue with the last 8 in Columbia exceeding the total. Some concern about Kentucky’s ability to score points but South Carolina could exceed this total on their own.