College Football Picks Against the Spread Week 8: Auburn Tigers vs. LSU Tigers, SEC Predictions

No. 20 Auburn Tigers at No. 1 LSU Tigers
Saturday, 10/22/11, 3:30 PM EST, TV:  CBS
Opening Point Spread:  LSU -21
Current Betting Line:  LSU -22
Opening Total:  46
Current Total:  46.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The LSU Tigers are the No. 1 team in the BCS standings

Auburn is going in another direction at quarterback in starting Clint Moseley instead of Barrett Trotter this week, who started the first seven games of the season.  He stepped in last week and led the team to a game-winning drive in a 17-6 win over the Florida Gators as three-point home underdogs.  “It was all surreal at first, especially because it’s all been such a roller coaster for me,” commented Moseley after the game.  The Tigers are 5-14-1 versus LSU in Baton Rouge, dropping the last five meetings at Tiger Stadium.  Auburn is 3-1 ATS versus SEC opponents this year and 15-6 ATS over the last two-plus seasons.

The Tigers have won 11 of their last 12 conference games and are 9-0 in games decided by four points or less under head coach Gene Chizik.  Auburn is 3-7 all-time against team’s ranked No. 1 in the AP Top 25 poll.  On the defensive side of the ball, the team has made great improvement in allowing 307 yards and 17.8 points per game over the last four contests, which is much better than the 36 points and 534.3 yards it allowed in the first three contests.

LSU aims to go 8-0 for the first time since 1973 and currently occupy the top spot in the BCS standings.  For the first time in school history, the Tigers have won their first seven games by double digits.  The program brings in a 14-game Tiger Stadium winning streak and an eight-game overall win streak into this contest.  When playing as the No. 1 team in the country, LSU is 17-3 all-time.  There’s few defenses that are better nationally, as LSU ranks seventh in allowing just 11.7 points per game while also giving up just 251.9 yards of offense.  Over the last two-plus seasons, LSU is 16-15 ATS and the ‘under’ is 17-13 in those contests.

The Tigers have given up just 31 points in their first four SEC games, the fewest since 1985 when allowing only 27 in the first four.  Creating turnovers has been a key to the team’s success, ranking fourth nationally with a plus-13 turnover margin, creating 16 turnovers while giving up the ball just three times.  LSU also leads the SEC and ranks fourth nationally in red-zone offense, converting 34-of-35 trips inside the 20-yard line this year.

Bettors will likely back the Auburn Tigers due to their 5-1 ATS mark as an underdog of 10.5 or more points, while the LSU Tigers are 7-18 ATS when favored over that number.

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