College Football Predictions Week 12: LSU Tigers vs. Ole Miss Rebels

No. 1 LSU Tigers at Ole Miss Rebels
Saturday, 11/19/11, 7:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPN
Opening Point Spread:  LSU -28.5
Current Betting Line:  LSU -30.5
Opening Total:  46
Current Total:  45.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

Tennessee Vs LSU Betting Preview
The No. 1 LSU Tigers are on cruise control

LSU is off to its best start since going 11-1 in 1958 and has tallied a 20-3 record when playing as the nation’s No. 1 team.  The Tigers have won at least 11 games six times in their history and head coach Les Miles has been a part of four of those six seasons.  It’s simple for the program at this point, win out and it will earn a spot in the BCS Championship Game.  The main question for Miles to figure out is the two-quarterback system that the team has been playing with down the stretch.  LSU is 5-1 ATS versus conference opponents this year.

The Tigers have seen both Jordan Jefferson and Jarrett Lee enjoy success under center this season, while the team ranks second in the Southeastern Conference in averaging 195.1 rushing yards per game.  Offensively, LSU ranks second in the conference in scoring 36.5 points per game, putting up 30 or more points in seven of nine games.  On the other side of the ball, the Tigers rank in the top five nationally in four major categories, including second in allowing just 10.7 points per game.

Mississippi is suffering through a disappointing 2-8 campaign and head coach Houston Nutt has already announced that he will step down at the end of the season.  “It’s difficult,” commented Nutt on the situation. “That’s where we are.”  The Rebels will be meeting the Tigers for the 100th time, trailing in the series by a 39-56-4 margin.  Over the last 14 games in the series, the program is 6-8, including wins in two of the last three meetings.  Mississippi dropped a 43-36 decision to LSU last year as 14-point road underdogs.  Over the last two-plus seasons, Mississippi is 7-15 ATS versus conference foes.

The Rebels have lost all seven previous tries in lining up against the nation’s top-ranked team, including a 51-31 loss last year to the Auburn Tigers.  Mississippi hasn’t been very good offensively during the 2011 campaign, ranking 113th in total offense, averaging 296.8 yards per game.  Senior running back Brandon Bolden will need to have a huge game for any potential upset to occur, coming in with 2,485 career rushing yards.  Quarterback Randall Mackey will be making his seventh consecutive start, throwing for 1,112 yards and seven touchdowns this season.

Bettors will likely back the Rebels due to their 5-1 ATS mark as a home underdog of 10.5 or more points, while the Tigers are 4-13 ATS in November.

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