KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Alabama has opened as a 34-point favorite over Tennessee in the teams’ 3:30 p.m. game next Saturday at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa, according to VegasInsider.com.
The No. 1-ranked Crimson Tide is off to an 8-0 start this season after consecutive appearances in the College Football Playoff championship game.
The Vols are 3-3 overall and 0-3 in the SEC, suffering last-second losses at Florida and home to South Carolina, and with a 41-0 blemish on their slate after No. 3-ranked Georgia wiped them out three weeks ago.
Alabama beat Tennessee last season by a 49-10 count in Knoxville.
Tennessee recently made a change at quarterback, inserting redshirt freshman Jarrett Guarantano as the starter.
Guarantano engineered a 73-yard drive in the final minute of the loss to the Gamecocks before stalling 2 yards short of the end zone in the final seconds.
“We have to make great strides in a lot of situational football areas, and then it’s on to Alabama,” Vols coach Butch Jones said on his Sunday morning television show. “It will be a great, great challenge, but also a great opportunity.”
Tennessee hasn’t beater Alabama since 2006 in Knoxville (16-13), and its last win in Tuscaloosa came in 2003 when Casey Clausen quarterbacked a 5-overtime victory, 51-43.
The Vols played Alabama as their annual opponent from the SEC West Division each year, and then another SEC West opponent that rotates.
This year, Tennessee plays host to LSU in November.
Coach Butch Jones and the Vols lost to Nick Saban and the Tide 19-14 the last time the teams met in Tuscaloosa, in 2015.