Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#179 South Carolina -4.5 vs.
#180 Tennessee 47.5
Saturday, October 26, 2019 at 4:00pm EDT
Neyland Stadium, Knoxville
Written by Sporty Jordy



#179 University of South Carolina
#180 University of Tennessee


This article covers a past game!

View upcoming games.

When and where: October 26, 2019, Neyland Stadium, Knoxville, TN, 4:00 PM ET

After a fierce battle with Alabama, the Tennessee Volunteers hope to get back on the winning track on Saturday, when hosting the visiting South Carolina Gamecocks. There have been talks about poor officiating in the fallout from the Volunteers’ 35-13 loss to Alabama, but it’s time for coach Jeremy Pruitt to bury that nonsense and move on to planning for another conference opponent. South Carolina gave No. 9 Florida all they could handle, despite ultimately coming up short in a 38-27 loss.

South Carolina wilts in fourth quarter

This hasn’t been the best week for the Gamecocks, following a disheartening loss to Florida. On Tuesday, it was announced the program was being put on one-year probation due to an “impermissible off-campus contract” involving a recruit and an assistant coach.

It surely wasn’t nearly as impermissible as the Gamecocks poor defensive play that led to Florida racking up 21 points in the fourth quarter and avoiding the upset last week. Imagine the buzz around South Carolina if the Gamecocks would have beaten Georgia and Florida in back-to-back weeks.

But we’ll never know.

The big question is whether they’re able to get back up psychologically for a meeting with the Volunteers on Saturday. Senior tailback Tavien Feaster is coming off a monster 175-yard rushing performance, and he’ll be looking to plow over a Volunteers run defense allowing 156.9 yards on the ground per game. The less you hear from freshman Ryan Hilinski is usually a good thing. Tennessee’s defense has their fair share of problems, but they stood in tough against Alabama, even when Tua Tagovailoa was on the field.

Hilinski has to play smart football on the road and avoid costly turnovers. He could be forced to do so without Rico Dowdle coming out of the backfield. The senior tailback is the thunder to Feaster’s lightning, and he is officially listed as doubtful with a knee injury. Leading receiver Bryan Edwards is also questionable with an ankle ailment, along with standout defensive lineman Aaron Sterling, who is working his way back from a knee injury.

Tennessee hoping Alabama game sparks a turnaround

Even in a defeat, there are some positives for the Volunteers to take away from their heartfelt effort against the Crimson Tide last week. If not for bad penalties and mental mistakes, the final score would have been much closer than it ended up being. Of course, Pruitt also has to be upfront and honest with his team instead of calling out the officiating.

Great teams don’t make the kind of back-breaking mistakes the Volunteers made in that game. So they certainly have some growing to do.

They can start against a Gamecocks pass defense that has given up 15 touchdown passes through the air. Volunteers star receiver Jauan Jennings should be licking his chops for his chance to exploit the third-worst passing defense in the SEC. However, quarterback Jarrett Guarantano, assuming he starts on Saturday, has to avoid forcing throws because the Gamecocks are opportunistic in takeaways. They’ve already picked off nine passes in the season, including a red zone throw from Tagovailoa.

Volunteers starting quarterback Brian Maurer is still questionable for Saturday’s game after getting knocked out of the meeting against Alabama with a concussion.

On the defensive side of the ball, Tennessee has to figure out a way to generate some pass rush and get Hilinski moving around with happy feet in the pocket. Turnovers are the perfect way to rattle the Gamecocks offense early in a road game. They have to show the same scrappy defensive play they showed against Alabama.

Best Bets for this Game

Full-Game Side Bet

Insiders Status:


Tennessee has broken too many hearts to try and cozy up with them this soon after a valiant effort against Alabama. Let’s not forget Tagovailoa wasn’t even on the field, and the Volunteers still got stomped 35-13.

The Gamecocks have been rolling as of late with the lopsided win over Kentucky, upset over Georgia and solid outing against Florida. There is a toughness burning within that organization that is sadly mistaken for luck. However, they could make a statement by going into Neyland Stadium and taking the heart from the Volunteers. It would be surprising to see Maurer return on Saturday, which would put the reins behind center back into the hands of Guarantano.

Tennessee ranks second-worst in the conference in offense, and Guarantano is prone to turning the football over. There is a reason why Pruitt benched him and went with Maurer as the starter. Hilinski doesn’t have to be perfect. He just has to be better than Guarantano. I’ll gladly take those odds and the Gamecocks to come out on top.

Prediction: South Carolina Gamecocks (-4.5)

Full-Game Total Pick

Insiders Status:


Both teams rank in the bottom-half of the league in total offense, but they’re also bad on defense. South Carolina is allowing 25.3 points per game to opponents this season, while the Volunteers are allowing 27.0 points. Even if Guarantano plays, he was the team’s original starter before Maurer got brought into the mix. So don’t expect him to back down from an opportunity to reclaim his position. I like the over betting total here.

Prediction: Over (47.5)

Written By Jordy McElroy , "Sporty Jordy"

Born in Germany and raised in the beautiful state of Tennessee, Jordy McElroy is a storyteller of sports, a sports betting enthusiast and a semi-deep thinker. Being a New England Patriots fan means he's a six-time Super Bowl winner as well, which means you'd have to be a fool to ignore his advice. Prior to joining our team here at Winners & Whiners, Jordy’s work appeared on, FOX Sports, Bleacher Report, USA TODAY and There are no beaches where he comes from -- just rolling hills, green valleys and all the Sun Drop you can drink.