Mississippi State and LSU are both on the rebound as the Bulldogs visit Death Valley in Week 10.
The Tigers (7-2) had Alabama on the ropes with less than two minutes to go, but they could not close the deal on the No. 1 team in the country. The Bulldogs (7-2), meanwhile, had their SEC West title hopes dashed when Texas A&M ran them out of their own building by three-plus touchdowns.
Death Valley will be home to two desperate teams but only one will be able to right the ship.
When: Saturday, Nov. 10 at 7 p.m. ET
Where: Tiger Stadium, Baton Rouge, La.
Live Stream: WatchESPN
Radio: Free Football Radio
Seems like Mississippi State is what we thought they were. After rolling to a 7-0 start, the Bulldogs have been a shell of their former self. In actuality, it’s because they started playing Top 25 opponents. Alabama and Texas A&M didn’t just outscore them by 25-plus, but put them in their place as second-tier in the SEC.
Vegas oddsmakers, as a result, aren’t giving the Bulldogs any respect for their 7-2 record either. Maybe they shouldn’t. If LSU’s offense can continue the improvement they showed against a daunting Alabama defense, this margin could be easily two touchdowns. Stay tuned.
Over Under: 44.5 (Bovada)
LSU likes to grind out games and doesn’t have a penchant for running up the score, so this number may seem a little high. After examining their Saturday opponent it may seem even more so.
Mississippi State scored 28 points or more in seven straight games to start the season. In their past two, though, the Bulldogs have only been able to muster 20 total.
The line suggests—barring an LSU blowout by four touchdowns—the Bulldogs will get into the end zone more than their recent play has suggested.
Mississippi State Injury Report (USA Today)
LSU Injury Report (USA Today)
Eric Reid, S, Day-to-Day
LSU still has a BCS bowl in play, but needs to run the table to ensure a selection. A slip-up against a pesky Bulldogs squad would all but close the door on a January finale.
Mississippi State has suffered a few losses in the past few weeks, but will be position for a solid bowl game.
Keys for Mississippi State Victory: Gain Some Confidence Early
The Bulldogs gave up 31 straight points before getting on the board against Texas A&M last Saturday. Ditto for Alabama, except make that 38.
Either a couple stops from the defense or an early score from Tyler Russell and Co. could give the team a spark after two straight blowout losses. They’ll need it to stay afloat in this matchup.
Keys for LSU Victory: Build on Last Week’s Offensive Success
The LSU offense may have played its best game in a losing effort against Alabama. Zach Mettenberger looked more like the prized quarterback that the team had envisioned, while running back Jeremy Hill has broken out as a valuable freshman on this roster.
Building on their performance from last week should have them winning in a rout. If they regress or come out flat, they could give the Bulldogs reason to believe without doing anything by their own merit.
LSU has found its bearings on offense, just in time to run up the score on Mississippi State. Bulldog fans may want to look the other way—this one will look just like the last two ugly losses.
LSU 27, Mississippi State 13