Auburn football game-by-game predictions

auburn football

The Auburn football and the rest of the SEC are now less than two weeks away from putting toe to leather and getting the 2020 season started. Surely this season will be interesting to see how it plays out. It will be especially hard to predict games when we are not sure who may have to sit out for COVID-19 related reasons any given week. Nevertheless, here are my predictions on how Auburn will fair with their 10 game, all-SEC schedule.

Sept. 26 vs. Kentucky

This will be an interesting test for Auburn’s first game. The biggest concerns coming into the season for Auburn are the starters lost along the offensive and defensive lines. Kentucky will have a chance to exploit inexperience in these areas. It returns 16 total starters, including most of that offensive line that lead the SEC in rushing last season. Something that might prevent an upset is the Wildcats will have to break in a new quarterback. Auburn has more depth and overall talent, which will push them to a fourth quarter victory.

Auburn 35, Kentucky 24

Oct. 3 @ Georgia

This will be the biggest game of the early portion of the 2020 football season. The fact that Georgia will need to find new starting quarterback is intriguing. The Bulldogs had one of the least productive offenses among the bluebloods in the SEC last year. This year, they have a true No. 1 receiving target in George Pickens. Their defense will be stout as always. It helps Auburn’s offensive line it will have faced an experienced front in its first game. Look for new offensive coordinator Chad Morris to use a lot of quick passes to negate the potent Georgia front. Anders Carlson hits a late field goal to win it.

Auburn 20, Georgia 17

Oct. 10 vs. Arkansas

Auburn is deeper and more talented at every position. Pending a huge loss of players from COVID-19 Auburn should roll in this one. Chad Morris gets a win against his former team.

Auburn 45, Arkansas 14

Oct. 17 @ South Carolina

This is the second of two added SEC games to the Tigers’ schedule with the other being against the Wildcats in Week 1. The Gamecocks lose their best player in Javon Kinlaw to the NFL. They do return numerous players on offense, including quarterback Ryan Hilinski. Still, Auburn’s talented and growing secondary will have a coming out party against the pass-happy Gamecocks. Bo Nix has solid game against a middle-of-the-pack defense.

Auburn 37, South Carolina 21

Oct. 24 @ Ole Miss

This a possible trap game for Gus Malzahn’s squad. Lane Kiffin knows how to run an offense and will have quarterback John Rhys Plumlee at his disposal. The Rebels return a lot on both sides of the ball. Look for Ole Miss to put up some points and make this a fourth quarter game. As has been for some time, Ole Miss may have trouble stopping teams. Bo Nix and Seth Williams connect for two touchdowns, including a fourth quarter one to ice it.

Auburn 41, Ole Miss 30

Oct. 31: vs. LSU

Auburn returns home for a big one against its rival. LSU loses more starters than anybody in the conference, but Coach Ed Orgeron will have the troops ready to go by mid-season. Terrace Marshall will be the No. 1 target throughout the season and have a solid game here. Seth Williams and Anthony Schwartz will have to show up for this one. DJ Williams and Tank Bigsby have success on the ground. The home Tigers pull away late in the fourth quarter for a two-possession win.

Auburn 31, LSU 21

Nov. 14 @ Mississippi State

The Bulldogs should have a more exciting offense under tutelage of Mike Leach. They do not return many starters on either side of the ball, but they did acquire former Stanford quarterback K.J. Costello. Look for him to attempt north of 45 passes in this one because the Cardinal will be playing from behind. Tank Bigsby emerges as the No. 1 running threat out of the backfield against a shaky defense.

Auburn 49, Mississippi State 24

Nov. 21 vs. Tennessee

It certainly feels like Jeremy Pruitt has the Vols trending the right direction. They finished 2019 on a six-game win streak and Pruitt has recruited well. Tennessee looks the part of a contender. It finished strong and returns eight starters on each side of the ball. The defense should be solid but to knock off a top-five Auburn team on the road, they need a championship quarterback. Jarrett Guarantano has a tough day under center. DJ Williams and Tank Bigsby score on the ground early. Roger McCreary comes up with a huge interception to seal it for the home team, following a late touchdown from Bo Nix to Freshman Ze’Vian Capers.

Auburn 27, Tennessee 20

Nov. 28 @ Alabama

Both teams enter the contest that decides the SEC West with records of 8-0. This will be an unusual Iron Bowl, since both teams have a regular season game the next week. No matter who is the starting quarterback this season, he will find receivers Davonte Smith and Jaylen Waddle often. Tiger fans have anxious memories of Waddle almost single-handedly taking down Auburn last year with four total touchdowns. This will be the best offense Auburn will see. Smith and Waddle each catch scores. Seth Williams and Eli Stove haul in touchdowns for the road team. Najee Harris runs for a couple scores, as the Tide get revenge from 2019 on their own turf. Expect another shootout.

Alabama 42, Auburn 38

Dec. 5 vs. Texas A&M

Kellen Mond should be improved this season. The Aggies return one of Mond’s favorite targets in Jhamon Ausbon. Mond will find some success through the air in this game. He will need to because the home team takes an early lead. Auburn takes a two-score lead into the intermission. Texas A&M crawls back into it, but Auburn will be angry after surrendering the SEC West to its bitterest rival. Auburn refuses to drop to third place in the division, and they’ll find themselves in a New Year’s Six game. Bo Nix runs and throws for a score in the fourth to solidify himself as a top three quarterback in the conference. The Tigers finish 9-1, with a likely berth to the Peach Bowl or Cotton Bowl.

Aubun 34, Texas A&M 28

Photo courtesy of Auburn Athletics