Brandon A. Quick | Sat 11/11/2017 - 07:38 EST

NCAA Football Pick Of The Day

NCAA Football Pick Of The Day

Alabama -13.5 @ Mississippi State

On paper, this game features a pair of top ten defenses with Alabama's unit ranked second in total defense and Mississippi State checking in at seventh in the same category. Paper, however, can be deceiving and ultimately prove to be the death of stat-obsessed handicappers.

Mississippi State gave up 23 points to UMass last week and was gouged earlier in the year by Georgia and Auburn. In other words, the two best teams the Bulldogs have faced have had their way against this defense and one bad team scored a surprising number of points. What exactly does this mean for Mississipi State's chances against Bama? It can't be good because the Tide offense has put up numbers and points in bunches against just about everyone this year. 

As for Bama, their defense is no paper tiger. The Tide has given up just three TD's in its last three games. Again, bad news for Mississippi State which put up just 13 points combined in those losses to Auburn and Georgia - the only defenses the Bulldogs have played who can be considered comparable to Alabama's. Mississippi State has scored 35, 45 and 35 in its last three games, but those efforts came against BYU, Kentucky and Texas A&M respectively - none of which have even medicore defensive units.

My Team's Next MatchMississippi State Bulldogs

Common Sense 

Sometimes a handicapper just has to follow the clues, connect the dots and use good old-fashioned common sense to make a profit. With Alabama favored by 13.5 in this one, I don't see any viable reasons why the Crimson Tide wouldn't cover this spread. In short, they should be able to score easily enough on Mississippi State and make it difficult for the Bulldogs to score on them.

After a two touchdown defeat of LSU last week that was mediocre by Alabama's lofty standards, the Tide should be a more focused team this week and can also move into the top playoff spot should Georgia fall to Auburn. More effusive praise for head coach Nick Saban may be nauseating to college football fans, but this guy earns his money in games like this. Mississippi State has a nice team, but as they've proven against the best teams on their schedule, they are a long way from college football's elite.

TAKE Alabama -13.5 Play Now

Laying 13.5 on the road against a top ten defensive team might be enough to scare some handicappers away from this game, but I think Alabama lays the wood and makes a statement here. While there's always a chance to get backdoored with a late, meaningless TD in games like this, I am leaning more towards an Alabama blowout than I am a game that hovers around the point spread. For most pundits, there's little doubt who is the best team in the land this year. Alabama will reinforce that point emphatically in Starkville Saturday night. 

Category : Betting Picks

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