The No. 8 Alabama Crimson Tide are flying high and sitting alone on top of the SEC standings, they’ll try not to slip up when they welcome the Vanderbilt Commodores to Tuscaloosa on Saturday.
The Commodores are not a good team. They have been profitable recently though, with just two ATS losses in their last ten games. Scotty Pippen Jr is one of the most productive players in the SEC but one against five is a tough formula if you are playing a team like Alabama. They did hang in there recently against Kentucky but the Wildcats are struggling this season. For some reason, Vandy has matched up really well with those guys. That is a bad sign for Kentucky fans.
Alabama has not played since last weekend when they demolished Georgia. It was not their best defensive game of the year, giving up 82 points, but they scored 115, a lot for a 40-minute game. When Alabama was humming before their loss to Oklahoma in the SEC/B12 Challenge they were playing some really great defense, however, their best strategy against a lot of teams might be to speed them up beyond their comfort zone. Few teams have the shooters they have.
Alabama is a massive favourite in this spot. This is actually their biggest line of the season so we should tread a little carefully. But I do not see the makings of an upset in Tuscaloosa and the way they just beat Georgia at home, as 11.5 point favourites is encouraging. The only other time they were a favourite of more than ten points was in their opening game against UNLV. They did not cover in that one but I am not sure how much relevance you can give the opener now. Even though they are only 5-6 ATS off an ATS win I have to lean towards the Tide for their ability to dominate.
The Crimson Tide (17-5, 12-1 SEC) have been a bit of a surprise this season with how dominant they’ve been. They’re averaging over 80 points per game and are allowing opponents to score just 70. They’ve lost two of their last five, but came out on fire in their last game against the Georgia Bulldogs with a season-high 115 points. Jaden Shackelford and John Petty Jr. lead the way offensively for Bama, scoring just over an average of 13 points each, but they have four players who average double figures, so it’s not any one player who will hurt the opposition more than the rest.
Vandy (6-11, 2-9 SEC) is having a rough go of it in 2021, only winning twice since the start of the new year. Their offense is scoring just about 73 points per game, but their defense is allowing about the same amount, which is less than ideal. They’ve only eclipsed 80 points four times this season and haven’t done it at all since Jan. 30. Scotty Pippen Jr. is the lone bright spot for Vanderbilt, he’s scoring over 20 points per game and has played in every single contest so far this year.
Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming
You can watch Vanderbilt vs. Alabama on Saturday, February 20th at 1:00 p.m. ET on SEC Network, or you can stream it via the ESPN app with a cable or streaming service login. If you don’t have a cable login to access the ESPN app, you can get a free trial from YouTube TV, Hulu with Live TV, AT&T TV Now, FuboTV, or Sling TV to stream it.
Point Spread, Totals, Odds, Trends
Point spread: Alabama -14.5
Point Total: 153
Money line: Vanderbilt +850, Alabama -1667
- Despite their overall record, Vandy has gone 4-0-2 ATS in their last six games.
- The total has gone over in eight of Vanderbilt’s last 11 thanks to the shaky defense.
- Bama has been pretty close to a lock against the spread, going 10-4-1 ATS in their last 15.
- The total has gone under in four of Alabama’s last six games.
The Best Game
Vanderbilt has played four games against top-40 KenPom opponents this season and have gotten wrecked by 20 points or more in three of them. They are primed to give up points to a Crimson Tide team that has consistently put up 80+ in various games, but expect the Commodores to put up enough themselves to trigger the over.