Top 25 matchups number but two on the Week 5 college football betting card, one of them a crucial SEC battle at Auburn between the Tigers and Mississippi State Bulldogs.
We haven’t reached the end of September yet, and the math has already become very simple for Dan Mullen and the Mississippi State Bulldogs: Lose another conference game, and kiss your SEC Championship hopes goodbye. If the numbers at Bookmaker and most other shops are correct, the Bulldogs can pucker up Saturday at Auburn against the Tigers.
The top 25 collision boots at 6 PM (ET) with ESPN providing the coverage from Jordan-Hare Stadium. Backing No. 13/15 Auburn means bettors will be burdened with a 10 point spread to cover, and the clash with No. 24 Mississippi State has one of the lower totals for the Week 5 betting card at 47-47½.
Tigers Begin SEC Schedule With Dominating Road Win
It’s the second consecutive SEC road test for the Bulldogs who were no match at Georgia this past Saturday. A 2½ point underdog on the NCAA football odds, Mississippi State was expected to give the other Bulldogs a good game only to fall flat in a 31-3 final. Mullen’s troops never could get their aerial game going against a stout Georgia defense that picked Nick Fitzgerald off twice, and that phase of the game won’t be any easier against Auburn’s 10th-ranked pass defense. The Bulldogs will be without starting defensive tackle Cory Thomas, and might not have wideout Gabe Myles with both upperclassmen nursing foot injuries.
Auburn rolled in its conference opener which also took place on the road at Missouri in a double-Tigers tilt. Gus Malzahn’s men finally found their offense as Kerryon Johnson scored four touchdowns in the game’s first 22+ minutes, and ran for five scores on the night as Auburn amassed more than 260 yards on the ground to cover a -18½ spread with plenty to spare after going 0-3 against the spread to begin 2017. Johnson and Kam Martin should get the majority of the carries this week with Kamryn Pettway (ankle) listed as questionable.
Rivalry Trends, Final Thoughts & A Free Pick
With 12 victories in the last 16 matchups, Auburn has a commanding 62-26-2 advantage in the rivalry, though Mississippi State has gained a measure of respectability lately by taking three of the last five meetings. The Bulldogs did have a little bit of success when the games took place in Birmingham back in the day, but they’ve only manage to win six times in Auburn. The visitors have won and covered the last two encounters, the Tigers coasting to a 38-14 decision a year ago in Starkville as 4 point favorites, The final fell well short of a 55 point total, the fifth consecutive ‘under’ in the series.
There could be a shower pup up in Auburn during the day, so check for a weather update before making your play. Despite the current ‘under’ trend in the rivalry and both teams 1-3 O/U on the season, I’m going to play contrarian with a free college football pick on the ‘over.’
Article by Willie Bee