CFB Betting – Mississippi State Bulldogs at LSU Tigers

Written by:
Phil Simon
Published on:

With the SEC returning to the gridiron this week we can say college football has returned. Games have been played for a few weeks, but you get the idea. The best football conference in America did its due diligence and is back with a 10-game league-only slate with the defending national champion LSU Tigers hosting the Mississippi State Bulldogs on Saturday. Both teams have a different look from a season ago with many of the stars from LSU’s record-setting offense no longer around. And speaking of record-setting offense, Mike Leach took his Air Raid from Pullman to Starkville in an attempt to revive the program. Oddsmakers like the Tigers setting them up as a 17-point favorite on the college football betting line.  Bookmaker.eu is offering a generous welcome bonus (max bonus $1000).

Mississippi State Bulldogs at LSU Tigers
Date and Time: Saturday, September 26, 2020, 3:30 p.m. ET
Location: Tiger Stadium, Baton Rouge, LA
Opening CFB Odds: LSU -19, O/U 55.5
Mississippi State at LSU TV Coverage: CBS

Odds Analysis

Two teams basically starting over and with no data to study makes this an interesting matchup. One thing bettors need to know is that the Tigers lost a lot from last year’s undefeated title winning team. A number of players went to the NFL, including Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow with the first overall pick. Biletnikoff Award winner Ja’Marr Chase and defensive lineman Tyler Shelvin, two mainstays from last year, opted out to prepare for next year’s draft. LSU hit the board as a 19-point favorite, but that number was wagered down to -17. After going 6-7 last season MSU cut ties with Joe Moorhead bringing in Leach, who had successful stints at Texas Tech and Washington State, mainly because the passing game ranked among the best in the nation. The last five meetings between the schools have all cashed the UNDER.

Mississippi State Bulldogs

One thing that plagued MSU under Moorhead was a lack of offense. In 2018 the Bulldogs averaged 28.5 points to rank 68th in the 130-team FBS. They went 8-5 thanks to the second-best scoring defense in the country. The rankings fell to 74th in both categories last season and the record tumbled to 6-7. A revolving door at quarterback along with off-field issues never allowed the Dogs to find traction and ultimately cost Moorhead his job.

There shouldn’t be problems on the offensive side this season. Leach’s teams have always had one of the most prolific passing games in the country. To make sure that continues he brought in quarterback K.J. Costello, a graduate transfer from Stanford. Costello threw for over 3,500 yards with 29 touchdowns for the Cardinal in 2018 before injuries limited him last season. “If you know what you’re doing and make quick decisions in this system, you’re going to be successful pretty fast,” Costello said.

One of the top backs in the conference will help make the transition. Kylin Hill was the SEC’s third leading rusher a season ago with 1,350 yards. “The biggest thing is that we’ve got some explosiveness but we want to have some consistency,” Leach said. Just two seasons ago the Dogs allowed an average just over 13 points per game to rank second in FBS. Last year they were next to last in the SEC surrendering nearly 29 points per outing.

LSU Tigers

As long as the comparisons to Burrow and what he did last season stop, Myles Brennan should be just fine. I don’t think that’s going to happen right away. So it’s up to the fourth-year junior to make his own statement with the offense as the quarterback that succeeded the record-setting Heisman winner. He’ll have to do it with a retooled group, though. Four starters on the offensive line, five of the top eight pass catchers, and the leading rusher from last season are gone. Oh, and Joe Brady, the architect of the passing game, also departed.

Brennan threw for 353 yards with a touchdown and an interception in limited snaps last season. “I’ve always believed in Myles Brennan. The only thing we don’t know – and I do believe that he’s going to do very well – is how he’s going to do in the fire, and the only way to know that is put him in the fire,” Ed Orgeron said.

There are a lot of moving parts on both sides of the football, but the Tigers have always recruited well and talent has never been an issue. Still, they aren’t going to be as successful as last year’s team and the initial national ranking of No. 6 is bloated.

Bet Mississippi State at LSU at BookMaker.eu

MSU hasn’t enjoyed a lot of success recently in the series losing four of the last five meetings. The Bulldogs did cover the closing line in each of the last two and the spread is high enough for me to back the visitors. The Tigers lost a lot of talent on both sides of the football. They aren’t going to run away from teams. With so many changes on both teams you would expect some sloppy play and the score to fall UNDER the total of 57.5.

CFB Score Prediction: LSU 30, Mississippi State 20

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- Phil Simon, Gambling911.com

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