NCAA Football – Week 7
SEC rivals clash in Starkville on the NCAA football odds on Saturday night, as the Mississippi State Bulldogs hope to move to 6-0 when they take on the Tennessee Volunteers.
The pressure is starting to mount once again on Head Coach Derek Dooley. After starting 2-0, the Vols have been beaten in two of their last three games with both losses coming in the SEC East, and losing this one would likely be the continuation of a four-game losing streak when push comes to shove. Up next after this after games against the Alabama Crimson Tide and South Carolina Gamecocks, and at that point, just getting to a bowl game seems unlikely. The passing game for the Vols is really all that they have going for them. QB Tyler Bray is completing 61.1 percent of his passes and has 14 TDs against six picks. That’s too many interceptions, but the rest of his numbers really aren’t all that bad. WR Justin Hunter has stepped up in the place of the booted WR Da’Rick Rogers, catching 33 passes for 456 yards and four scores almost halfway through the regular season. The defense has been suspect and badly needs to improve, as the 29.6 points per game allowed against the easy portion of the schedule just doesn’t cut it.
Does anyone even realize that Mississippi State is the fourth undefeated team in the SEC this year? There has been so much attention paid to the Alabama Crimson Tide and LSU Tigers in the SEC West that few recognize the fact that the Bulldogs do have a legit shot of competing this year. Win this one, and MSU is going to almost certainly be 7-0 and on a nine-game winning streak going into Tuscaloosa on October 27th. Remember that this is a team with a heck of a lot of talent. QB Tyler Russell is quietly putting up great numbers this year, and his lead receiver, WR Chad Bumphis is one of the more talented receivers that the conference has to offer as well. Bumphis has 21 catches for 375 yards and six TDs, and he is always capable of going off in some big time spots. All three of the top rushers on the team are averaging at least 4.9 yards per carry, and the leading rusher, RB LaDarius Perkins is good for 6.1 yards per rip. He has 499 yards and six touchdowns.
The oddsmakers are insinuating that these two teams are on relatively level terms and that the Bulldogs should only be favored by home field advantage. That being said, we’re not wondering if this isn’t an upset in the making here in favor of Tennessee. For as talented as MSU is, it has been dominated in this series for nearly two full decades, and Bray is the real deal. Go with the Volunteers to find a way in a desperation game to eke out an upset. Tennessee 28 – Mississippi State 27