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Auburn Tigers vs. Mississippi State Bulldogs Betting Pick

Opening Line: Auburn -3
Over/Under: 63

Time: 3:30 PM EST Saturday October 11, 2014 on CBS

No. 2 Auburn Tigers (5-0) vs. No. 3 Mississippi State Bulldogs (5-0)

First place is up for grabs in the SEC West in this game and the winner may be all-alone at the top of the division if Texas A&M can beat Ole Miss. Each of these teams are coming off impressive conference wins in their last game, especially MSU, who handed Texas A&M their first loss on the season.

Both of these teams have a great offense and each ranks in the top 15 in the nation in points per game. Since starting last season at 4-6 MSU has won 8 straight games, but they are still a 3-point home betting underdog facing Auburn.

In their last games Auburn beat LSU 41-7 and MSU beat Texas A&M 48-31.

Auburn is 3-2 ATS and they have an Over/Under record of 3-2 and MSU is 4-1 ATS and they have an Over/Under record of 3-2.

On the season MSU is 3-0 at home and Auburn is 1-0 on the road.

MSU QB Dak Prescott, who has been thrust into the Heisman race, as he has been putting up great numbers, leads MSU. He has not been picked off in his last 3 games and in 3 of 5 games this season he has rushed for over 100 yards. His 2 main targets each has over 220 receiving yards and has averaged over 14 yards per catch.

While Prescott can air it out and has a solid WR corps the run game may be the key for the Auburn defense. Prescott is the team’s 2nd leading rusher and RB Josh Robinson who is 4th in the SEC with 592 rushing yards and is averaging 7.5 per carry. Auburn has the nation’s 13th ranked run defense and they are solid and very big up front.

When Auburn faced another good duel-threat QB in Jake Waters in playing a ranked Kansas State team the Tigers did give up 245 passing yards, but stuffed the run.

Auburn is much like MSU on offense in that the run game is the strength of the unit. QB Nick Marshall only has 1 pick all season and in his last 3 games he has 7 TD. He is also the team’s 2nd leading rusher. D’haquille Williams is the main WR the Bulldogs have to worry about, as he has 25 catches while the next leading target has 9.

Auburn RB Cameron Artis-Payne is averaging over 5 yards per carry and he has rushed for over 100 yards in 4 of 5 games this season including the last 2.

While Auburn’s offense is tailored for the run they may want to air it out since the run defense for the Bulldogs is much better than the pass defense. MSU ranks 11th in the nation defending the run, but only 123rd defending the pass.

Betting Trends

Auburn is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 road games, 16-5 ATS in their last 21 games overall, and they have an Over record of 10-4 in their last 14 games.

MSU is 9-1 ATS in their last 10 games overall, 5-1 ATS in their last 6 home games, and they have an Over record of 4-1 in their last 5 games facing a team with a winning record.

In the last 9 games between these 2 teams the total has gone Under 7 times.

Free Against The Spread Pick

Let’s see we have two 5-0 teams playing from the same conference and the road team is favored? Yes Auburn’s schedule has been more difficult but not by a huge margin. They do have one common opponent in the LSU Tigers that Auburn crushed 41-7 last week and Mississippi State beat by only five points 34-29 in Week 4. If you were foolish enough to just consider the final box score for yardage stat and score in your handicapping then you may think that Auburn proved their superiority by how they disposed of LSU, but you’d be misinformed. The Bulldogs lead LSU by 24 points early in the 4th quarter before the backups came in and the Tigers reeled off 19 points to end a game that was never in doubt. Also keep in mind that the Bulldogs played against LSU in Louisiana. Auburn played at home. A common pattern appears again in the Mississippi State’s game against the Aggies. The Bulldogs lead by 31 points less than 5 minutes into the 4th quarter before two meaningless touchdowns by Texas A&M closed the winning to 17 points. This game opened at 3 and has moved down to 2.5 at some of the sharper books, but 3’s are still out there with no extra juice which of course is what I think you should play this at.

Take the Mississippi State Bulldogs +3

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