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SEC Championship Game: No. 1 Georgia vs. No. 8 Alabama Predictions, Odds & Picks

Written by: Grant Mitchell
Published December 2, 2023
7 min read

The defending back-to-back national champion No. 1 Georgia Bulldogs (12-0) are set to take on the No. 8 Alabama Crimson Tide (11-1) in the SEC Championship Game on Saturday.

Georgia’s last loss came in December 2021, also in the SEC Championship Game. ‘Bama won 10 straight games after falling to Texas at home, 34-24, in the second week of the season. 

Here, we will go over the betting odds and share our best insights for the matchup and potential College Football Playoff decider. 

No. 1 Georgia vs. No. 8 Alabama Odds

TeamSpreadMoneylinePoints Total
No. 1 Georgia-5.5 (-108)-218Over 54.5 (-112)
No. 8 Alabama+5.5 (-112)
BET ON OUR PICK
+180Under 54.5 (-108)
BET ON OUR PICK

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No. 1 Georgia vs. No. 8 Alabama Betting Preview

SEC Championship Georgia vs Alabama

Georgia is the joint-favorite to win the national championship alongside Michigan. They’re guaranteed a spot in the CFP with a win this weekend but could see themselves on the outside looking in if they lose, depending on how the other dominos fall.

UGA’s strength is its defense. They rank sixth in points allowed per game (15.8) and an average of 15.3 against the four ranked opponents they’ve faced (all from the SEC). They’re also 12th in pass defense (176.5 yards allowed per game) and 26th in run defense (giving up just 3.98 yards per carry).

All that said, the defense isn’t full of game-wreckers. They’re tied for only 64th in team sacks per game and 101st in turnovers gained.

The offense hasn’t been overwhelmingly dominant but has been fairly consistent and showed up in big spots. On top of their average of 39.6 points per game (eighth), they scored 42.8 against ranked opponents (and broke 50 twice).

Junior QB Carson Beck leads the Bulldogs’ offense. He averages 291.3 passing yards and has 25 total touchdowns to six interceptions. 

Beck struggled in his last game against 6-6 Georgia Tech, going 13-20 for 175 yards, a touchdown, and an interception. However, he averaged 311.8 yards passing and totaled 11 touchdowns and two interceptions against top 25 opponents.

Presumptive top 10 pick in next year’s NFL Draft, tight end Brock Bowers, could make his return to action for the first time since suffering an ankle injury on Nov. 18 against Tennessee. His status is uncertain at the time of writing. 

The Bulldogs’ running game isn’t the focal point of the offense, but it’s highly effective. They gain 185.6 yards per game on the ground and average 5.26 yards per carry, the 14th-best mark in the country.

Alabama is no stranger to high-intensity games late in the season. They missed the CFP last year but dominated No. 9 Kansas State in the Sugar Bowl, 45-20, and made it to the national championship in 2021 before falling to UGA, 33-18.

The Crimson Tide barely survived the Auburn Tigers last week in another classic edition of the Iron Bowl. QB Jalen Milroe hooked up with wideout Isaiah Bond on fourth and goal from the 31 for a go-ahead touchdown with 0:32 remaining, and two plays later, an interception ended the game.

Milroe, a sophomore, has shown tremendous growth as the season progressed. He was benched earlier in the year after failing to impress during the Texas loss but has been highly impressive as of late, finishing each of his last four games with QBRs of 88 or better.

For the year, the Katy, Texas native averaged 269.5 total yards and racked up 33 total touchdowns and six interceptions. His best game was on Nov. 4 against LSU, when he threw for 219 yards and ran for 155 yards and four touchdowns.

Milroe also averaged 287.3 total yards and was responsible for nine touchdowns and four interceptions against four ranked opponents. Alabama went 3-1 in those games, winning the last three.

Alabama as a whole ranks 17th in scoring offense (35.8 points) and 14th in scoring defense (17.9 points allowed). That includes an average of 23 against top 25 teams and 20.1 against SEC opponents.

Whereas Georgia struggles to get QBs on the ground, ‘Bama is ninth in sacks per game (three). They also rank 15th in pass defense (184.2 yards per game) and 33rd in rush defense (128.4 yards per game).

No. 1 Georgia vs. No. 8 Alabama Picks & Predictions

No. 8 Alabama +5.5 (-112)

Milroe’s growth into the offense makes us confident that ‘Bama can keep it close. The UGA offense can score lots of points but won’t have a true game-breaker if Bowers can’t go or isn’t the full version of himself, and Milroe can be that player. Bama’s defense also has the ability to create pressure and force mistakes, which presents enough upside for us to believe in.

Over 54.5 (-108)

Even though both teams will look to their defense to help guide them to victory, we expect the nature of this rivalry to inevitably lead to points being scored. Georgia’s relentlessness in moving the football juxtaposed with Milroe’s ability to turn into a one-man band should make for great viewing and a game that ends up going over the total.

No. 1 Georgia vs. No. 8 Alabama Betting Promos

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How To Watch No. 1 Georgia vs. No. 8 Alabama

  • Where: Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta, GA

  • When: Saturday, Dec. 2, 4:00 p.m. ET

  • How to Watch: CBS

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AUTHOR

Grant Mitchell

397 Articles

Grant is a sports and sports betting journalist who prides himself on delivering breaking news and insightful analyses of the industry. Grant graduated from Virginia Tech in 2021 and is feverishly pursuing his ambitions in the sports betting field.

In his free time, Grant can be found passionately watching sports, doing a workout, or searching for adventure with his friends.

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