Predicting the 2019 Over/Under Win Totals for the SEC

I wrote in yesterday’s ACC-centric breakdown about how the schedule is one of the most important factors when looking at over/under win totals. That’s especially true in the SEC with permanent cross-division rivals.

A team like Tennessee is at a disadvantage because they play Alabama every year. Georgia-Auburn and Florida-LSU are also annual matchups, which automatically makes their schedules more challenging on paper.

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Because of that, SEC teams often have lower win totals even if they’re one of the country’s best programs.

On that note, here are my predictions for the SEC.

SEC East

Georgia

2018 over/under win total: 10.5

2018 regular season record: 11-1

2019 outlook: Georgia will be one of the most talented teams in the country and deserves to be the favorite to win the SEC East. That being said, their schedule is one of the toughest in the country, with a non-conference game against Notre Dame in September, and Auburn and Texas A&M as their cross-division games. In the month of November, they play Florida in Jacksonville, host Missouri, travel to Auburn, host the Aggies and play at Georgia Tech. It’s a really tough stretch leading up to a possible appearance in the SEC Championship Game.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 10

Kentucky

2018 over/under win total: 5.5

2018 regular season record: 9-3

2019 outlook: Kentucky was one of the surprise teams of college football in 2018 and exceeded their win total easily. The Wildcats will be tested right away with September games against Florida, Mississippi State and South Carolina. Kentucky beat all three of those teams last season, so revenge will be a factor when handicapping that group of games. Along with Mississippi State, Kentucky gets a favorable draw by playing Arkansas as their other cross-division game. While their schedule sets up well after the opening stretch of the season, the loss of running back Benny Snell Jr. and linebacker Josh Allen will test the Wildcats’ depth.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 6

Florida

2018 over/under win total: 8.5

2018 regular season record: 9-3

2019 outlook: Expectations will be high in Florida after the Gators picked up nine regular season wins and a dominating victory over Michigan in the Peach Bowl. Even then, I would scale back the excitement for Dan Mullen’s team because I’m expecting them to be overvalued in the betting markets next year. The Gators have a really difficult schedule that opens against Miami in Orlando, while October features a tough stretch with cross-division games against Auburn and at LSU. The week after their trip to Tiger Stadium, they go back on the road to face South Carolina. Florida will have a bye in the last week of October and then play Georgia in a game that could decide the SEC East representative in the title game. They close the season with their annual game against rival Florida State.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 8.5

South Carolina

2018 over/under win total: 7.5

2018 regular season record: 7-5

2019 outlook: South Carolina will potentially play five top-10 teams next season, but the truly brutal part of their schedule starts in Week 3 when they host Alabama as one of their cross-division games. They later travel to Georgia and host Florida in back-to-back weeks in October and finish their season by hosting defending national champion Clemson. If you’re surprised when South Carolina’s win total comes out lower than expected, remember how taxing their schedule is.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 6.5

Missouri

2018 over/under win total: 7

2018 regular season record: 8-4

2019 outlook: It appears that Missouri has the most favorable schedule out of the 14 SEC teams and that could lead to value in their season win total. Unfortunately for the program, the NCAA handed Mizzou a postseason ban in a ruling that they plan on appealing. Their eventual win total will likely be altered if any players transfer from the program or any news regarding their postseason eligibility leaks. The Tigers’ toughest non-conference game is hosting a West Virginia team with a new coach in Week 2. Missouri plays five straight home games starting with that matchup with the Mountaineers and doesn’t have to leave their own campus until Oct. 19. They also draw Ole Miss and Arkansas from the West, who are the two weakest teams from that division.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 8

Vanderbilt

2018 over/under win total: 4.5

2018 regular season record: 6-6

2019 outlook: Vanderbilt’s first three games of the season are against Georgia, at Purdue and LSU. A win in one of those games is likely necessary in order to be bowl eligible. Along with LSU, Vanderbilt goes to Ole Miss in their cross-division games. The Commodores play road games in November against South Carolina, Florida and Tennessee.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 4.5

Tennessee

2018 over/under win total: 5.5

2018 regular season record: 5-7

2019 outlook: Tennessee fell short of a bowl game in Jeremy Pruitt’s first season, which will have Volunteers fans expecting six or more wins next year. When you look down the calendar to the month of October, you realize that we’ll quickly find out if Tennessee is ready to take a positive step forward. They host Georgia and Mississippi State, travel to Alabama and finish the month with a home game against South Carolina. If the Vols can win one game during that stretch, they’ll have a chance to be bowl eligible.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 6

SEC West

Alabama

2018 over/under win total: 11

2018 regular season record: 12-0

2019 outlook: Alabama is a 5/2 favorite to win the national title, and they will be a favorite in all 12 of their regular season games. They open the season against Duke in Atlanta and have a road game against South Carolina in Week 3. Their other cross-division game is against Tennessee the week after they play at Texas A&M. In November, the Crimson Tide get LSU at home, play at Mississippi State and head to Auburn for the Iron Bowl.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 11.5

Texas A&M

2018 over/under win total: 7

2018 regular season record: 8-4

2019 outlook: Texas A&M has the potential to be a top-10 team next season based on coaching and talent. However, their schedule might hold them back from competing for the SEC West title. They play at Clemson in Week 2 and finish the season with back-to-back road games at Georgia and LSU. The Aggies host Auburn, Alabama and Mississippi State during the heart of their schedule.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 8

LSU

2018 over/under win total: 7

2018 regular season record: 9-3

2019 outlook: LSU had a low win total last season because of their schedule and they overachieved with several outright upsets. Not only will the expectations be higher in 2019 for Ed Orgeron’s team, but the schedule still has plenty of landmines. The Tigers will be in the national spotlight early this season when they play at Texas in Week 2. Their first two SEC games are cross-division tilts at Vanderbilt and home against Florida, while an October stretch that features Mississippi State and Auburn will likely decide if the Tigers go over or under their magic number.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 8.5

Mississippi State

2018 over/under win total: 8

2018 regular season record: 8-4

2019 outlook: Joe Moorhead inherited a really strong team in his first season with the Bulldogs which is why it’s disappointing that they finished the regular season with an 8-4 record and a bowl loss against Iowa. As for 2019, Kansas State is their toughest non-conference game and that will be played in Starkville. The Bulldogs host Kentucky and travel to Tennessee in their games against SEC East foes.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 8

Auburn

2018 over/under win total: 9

2018 regular season record: 7-5

2019 outlook: Auburn is a team I will be looking to bet under their win total because of an overreaction to their dominating bowl victory over Purdue. There is uncertainty at the quarterback position and their schedule is really tough. The Tigers open the season against Oregon in Arlington and travel to Texas A&M and Florida — all before their first bye week. On top of that, the Tigers go all of October without playing a game at home. A bright spot for Auburn is that their annual November games against Georgia and Alabama are at home this year.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 7.5

Ole Miss

2018 over/under win total: 5

2018 regular season record: 5-7

2019 outlook: Ole Miss is in a tough position because they play in the loaded SEC West and are still trying to rebound from recent NCAA sanctions. Luckily for them, they are now eligible to make a bowl game after a two-year postseason ban. The Rebels have to play both Alabama and Auburn on the road, and they finish their season on Thanksgiving night at Mississippi State in an Egg Bowl showdown.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 4.5

Arkansas

2018 over/under win total: 5.5

2018 regular season record: 2-10

2019 outlook: Razorbacks head coach Chad Morris will still be seeking his first SEC victory when Arkansas takes the field in 2019. While there are wins to be had for the Razorbacks with a non-conference slate that includes Portland State, Colorado State, San Jose State and Western Kentucky, one has to wonder if Arkansas can get on the board in conference play. They draw Kentucky and Missouri from the East and have to play Auburn and Alabama in back-to-back weeks in October.

2019 over/under win total prediction: 4.5

MORE: SEC Football National Championship Odds: Favorite, Dark Horse & More