SEC College Football Betting Picks: South Carolina Gamecocks at Mississippi State Bulldogs

South Carolina Gamecocks at Mississippi State Bulldogs
Saturday, September 10, 2016, 7:00 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN2
Davis Wade Stadium – Starkville, Mississippi
Opening Line: Mississippi State -6 1/2
Current Line: Mississippi State -7 (-105)
Opening Total: 47 (under -118)
Current Total: 45 1/2
Opening Money Line: Mississippi State -265 / South Carolina +215
Current Money Line: Mississippi State -290 / South Carolina +230

Mississippi State looks to rebound from an upset loss to South Alabama last week as they host South Carolina.
Mississippi State looks to rebound from an upset loss to South Alabama last week as they host South Carolina.

The Mississippi State Bulldogs host the South Carolina Gamecocks Saturday. It is the SEC opener for the Bulldogs but the second SEC game for the Gamecocks. South Carolina leads the series against Mississippi State 9-6 including 4-3 in Starkville. The Gamecocks have won seven straight games in the series including 34-16 in Starkville in the last meeting in 2013.

Last week, the Bulldogs were upset by South Alabama 21-20 at home. South Carolina won at at Vanderbilt 13-10. Mississippi State was a 27.5 point favorite against South Alabama and the total was 52. The Gamecocks were 5 point underdogs at Vanderbilt and the total was 40.5.

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South Carolina is coached by Will Muschamp. Last Thursday night, Vanderbilt jumped out to a 10-0 lead at halftime including a one yard touchdown run by Khari Blasingame early in the second. South Carolina kicked a 48 yard field goal midway through the third. The Gamecocks would tie it up midway through the fourth on an 8 yard touchdown run from Deebo Samuel. The Commodores missed a 45 yard field goal on the ensuing drive.  South Carolina kicked the game winning 55 yard field goal with 35 seconds left. Vanderbilt had one more chance but lost 10 yards and went four and out.

South Carolina had 308 total yards including 187 passing and 121 rushing yards. Vanderbilt had 242 total yards including 73 passing and 169 rushing yards. Each team had 14 first downs. The Gamecocks were 6/16 on third down conversions last year, and the Commodores were 4/15 on third downs and 0/1 on fourth down. South Carolina had 7 penalties for 51 yards and Vanderbilt had 5 penalties for 33 yards. The Gamecocks had the only two turnovers of the game. Vanderbilt had the edge in time of possession at 33:15 to 26:45 for South Carolina.

Quarterback Perry Orth was 11/19 passing with 152 yards and rushed for 8 yards. Brandon McIlwain was 5/11 passing for 35 yards and rushed for 29 yards. Running back A.J. Turner had 13 carries for 70 yards, and had 3 catches for 27 yards. Receiver Bryan Edwards had 8 catches for 101 yards.

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Mississippi State is coached by Dan Mullen. Last week, was the first game since quarterback Dak Prescott was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys. They could have used him against South Alabama. It started off well as the Bulldogs took a 17-0 lead into halftime. Quarterback Damian Williams threw a four yard touchdown pass to Deddrick Thomas midway through the first. The Bulldogs added a seven yard touchdown run from Brandon Holloway early in the second quarter. MSU kicked a 37 yard field goal late in the second.

South Alabama scored a touchdown five minutes into the third. Still, the Bulldogs added another field goal to take a 20-7 lead into the fourth. The Jaguars stunned the Bulldogs with two fourth quarter touchdowns to make it 21-20 with 57 seconds left. Mississippi State drove down the field and missed their second field goal of the fourth quarter, this time from 28 yards. South Alabama took a knee to seal the massive upset.

Mississippi State had 382 yards including 143 passing and 239 rushing yards. South Alabama had 379 total yards including 285 passing and 94 rushing yards. The Bulldogs had 22 first downs to 19 for the Jaguars. MSU was 2/9 on third down conversions and USA was 5/14 on third downs and 2-2 on fourth downs. The Jaguars had 8 penalties for 57 yards and the Bulldogs had 5 penalties for 41 yards. Neither team had a turnover. South Alabama led time of possession by a significant margin 36:41 to 23:19 for the Bulldogs.

Williams was 20/28 passing for 143 yards and a touchdown, and also rushed for 93 yards on 12 carries. Nick Dylan Fitzgerald took a few snaps but did not complete a pass in three attempts and rushed for 11 yards on two carries. Holloway had 11 carries for 48 yards and a touchdown and had 5 catches for 40 yards. Fred Ross had 6 catches for 34 yards and also had a 46 yard run.

South Carolina is 4-1 ATS in SEC games, 5-2 overall, 2-6 against teams with losing records, and 0-4 after allowing less than 275 total yards on defense. South Carolina is 6-1 ATS in this series recently. The under is 4-1-1 in the last six games in the series.

Mississippi State is 17-4 ATS against teams with winning road records, 4-1 after failing to cover, and after rushing for more than 200 yards, 7-2 after a straight up loss, 8-3 in September, and 14-6 in SEC games. The favorite and home team is 4-1 ATS in this series recently.

Mississippi State is desperate for a win after being embarrassed by South Alabama. The Gamecocks escaped with a win but the offense struggled to say the least. I think this will be a low scoring game and I think Mississippi State rebounds with a win. A touchdown seems like a lot of points though.

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