For the Record: The Late SEC Games

Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

As usual when we start to run short on time in the evenings, we still like to get our official predictions on the record so you can mock them if necessary

Vanderbilt Commodores vs. Tennessee Volunteers, 7 pm ET, ESPN2
The favorite in this game is Tennessee, and the only real reason is the home-field advantage. The spread is 2.5 (at least in our Yahoo! Pick'em game), which basically translates to a 0.5-point Vanderbilt win on a neutral field. Personally, I think the spread would likely be in Vanderbilt's favor if it weren't for the names on the front of the jerseys, so to speak. To me, Vanderbilt is just a better team than Tennessee. And while Tennessee has more to play for in a technical sense -- the Vols won't go to a bowl here if they lose --  Vanderbilt has just as much to play for when it comes to program pride. The Commodores escape with a narrow win. Vanderbilt 26, Tennessee 20

Missouri Tigers vs. Mississippi Rebels, 7:45 p.m. ET, ESPN
If you go back to mid-October, there was really no reason to think this would be a big game for Missouri's SEC East hopes. The Rebels were 3-3 and on a three-game losing streak. Then came the LSU win, and Ole Miss started to look a little bit more intimidating. And while the game against Texas A&M might still be the biggest obstacle on the road to Atlanta for Mizzou, this is a dangerous game. James Franklin is coming back from injury, the Rebels have the home-field advantage, and Hugh Freeze's offense looks to be clicking as well as ever. But there's no reason to think that this won't be a close game late, and I don't trust Freeze  in critical late-game situations. Missouri 24, Ole Miss 21

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