Like It Is

Wally Hall's weekend predictions

It is rivalry weekend in the SEC and across the country and mostly what’s on the line is history.

Someday, Arkansas and Missouri might be a rivalry, the Razorbacks first if that happens. But while it is a trophy game, it is not a game either team circles on its schedule and the fans revel in the competition.

LSU vs. Arkansas was almost a rivalry before Texas A&M and Missouri joined the SEC and the league decided the Tigers vs. the Aggies meant more than the Tigers and Razorbacks the day after Thanksgiving.

The biggest game in the country happens in the Big 10 when undefeated Michigan travels to undefeated Ohio State, so that game will be a bonus prediction.

Last week the record was 9-2 bringing the season total to 85-25.

Here’s this week’s predictions:

Arkansas at Missouri

The Razorbacks are trying to improve their bowl situation while the Tigers are trying desperately to get in one. Hogs will miss Bumper Pool, but redshirt freshman Chris “Pooh” Paul has helped at linebacker off the bench. If Tigers sell out to stop the run, KJ Jefferson will beat them with his arm. Arkansas 35-24

Troy at Arkansas State

The Trojans are one win away from the Sun Belt Conference championship game, while the Red Wolves are a game away from the season finally being over although head coach Butch Jones is promising better days are on their way. Troy 35-17

Auburn at Alabama

Sometimes you can throw the record book out when these two play, but Gus Malzahn isn’t walking through the door and Nick Saban will want to get the 10-win standard that Tide fans have been accustomed to. Alabama 35-14

Florida at Florida State

The Gators will have to stop the jet fuel Seminole offense, which is averaging 35 points per game and has won four consecutive games. Florida is trying to play themselves into the Gator Bowl in Jacksonville, Fla. Florida State 35-24

Georgia Tech at Georgia

The Bulldogs might be looking ahead to next week’s SEC Championship Game with LSU, but that probably won’t be enough for the Yellowjackets (5-6) to win Saturday. Georgia 42-17

Louisville at Kentucky

Bragging rights on the line as both teams are bowl eligible and looking to improve their position. Cardinals and Wildcats are good but not great teams. If there were ties in college football that would be the pick, but since it is Krogerville, I’m going with the home field advantage. Kentucky 28-27

LSU at Texas A&M

No reason to believe the Tigers will be looking ahead to next week’s showdown with Georgia. First year Coach Brian Kelly has proved to be savvy and SEC good. The Aggies were not impressive against one-win Massachusetts. LSU 42-14

South Carolina at Clemson

The Gamecocks are fresh off a stunning 63-38 win over Tennessee, which was basically eliminated from the College Football Playoffs with that loss. The Tigers’ loss to Notre Dame knocked them out of the playoffs if there are not a lot of major upsets this weekend. Clemson 42-21

Tennessee at Vanderbilt

Hard not to pull for the Commodores, who could get bowl eligible with a win over the guys in orange. But the Vols are playing for a top-tier bowl and will be wanting to regain some respect even without its starting quarterback Hendon Hooker. Tennessee 39-21

Michigan at Ohio State

The opinion here is the loser of this game is not necessarily knocked out of the CFP race if they don’t get blown out. The Buckeyes have a powerful offense and are averaging 46 points a game in Big Ten play. Michigan might have a better defense. This one comes down to turnovers. Michigan 35-31