Texas A&M at Mississippi State Expert Pick & Lines
No. 7 Texas A&M is not out of the running for the College Football Playoff, but the Aggies have to win out and do so impressively — and get some help around the country. The Aggies could be on letdown alert Saturday at struggling Mississippi State, however. But A&M is nearly a two-touchdown favorite in online college football betting.
How To Bet on the Texas A&M at Mississippi State Expert Pick, Lines & TV Info
When: Saturday, Nov. 5, Noon ET
Where: Davis Wade Stadium, Starkville, Miss.
TV: SEC Network
Radio: Texas A&M / Mississippi State
Opening NCAA Football Lines: A&M -13.5 (61.5)
Why Bet on Texas A&M?
The Aggies (7-1), after a 33-14 loss to top-ranked Alabama on Oct. 22, remain one of the nation’s more intriguing “wild card” playoff options because the CFP has yet to reward a school that did not win its conference title. But if the Aggies finish 11-1 with their lone loss to the top-ranked Tide, that would make for a pretty enticing resume on Dec. 3 even without an appearance in the SEC Championship Game. A&M already has victories over four teams that have spent multiple weeks in the AP poll (No. 11 Auburn, Tennessee, Arkansas and UCLA).
A&M comes off a 52-10 non-conference win over New Mexico State. Christian Kirk returned two punts for touchdowns and added a third score on a reception. Kirk returned punts for 70 and 73 yards to become the first player in school history with two punt return scores in a game. He has four in his career, which is a Texas A&M record. Texas A&M became the first FBS team in 2016 to register multiple TDs via rushing, passing and returns in the same game.
Senior WR Josh Reynolds reeled in the 24th TD catch of his career on a 41-yard catch and run early in the fourth quarter. With the TD, Reynolds matched Ryan Swope (2009-12) for No. 2 on Texas A&M’s career touchdown catches list. Jeff Fuller set the school record of 34 from 2008-11.
Texas A&M rushed for 200-plus yards and passed for 200-plus yards for the seventh time in eight games in 2016, tied with South Florida for the most on the season. Aggies QB Trevor Knight currently ranks No. 2 in the SEC in total offense with a 299.6 per game average and he rushed for 529 yards and passed for 1,868 yards.
Why Bet on Mississippi State?
The Bulldogs (3-5) come off a 56-41 non-conference win over Samford. The teams combined for 1,296 yards in the offensive explosion, State’s 669 a school record. MSU QB Nick Fitzgerald connected on 20-of-35 passes for 417 yards and five touchdowns, the latter tying MSU’s best mark set by Dak Prescott last season. The Bulldogs set a new school record with 29 first downs.
Fitzgerald also rushed for two scores, tying the other school record set by Prescott in that same game with seven TDs responsible for in one game. By throwing for 400 yards and rushing for 100, Fitzgerald became the third quarterback in SEC history to earn a 400/100 game, joining Johnny Manziel (2012: 453 passing, 104 rushing) and Archie Manning (1969: 436 passing, 104 rushing).
Fitzgerald is MSU’s leading rusher and passer. He is fourth in the SEC in total offense, putting up 269.1 yards per game. He’s accounted for 20 (14 pass, 6 rush) of MSU’s 28 offensive TDs this season (71.4%). Fitzgerald has thrown at least one TD pass in five straight games and a combined 12 TDs in his last five contests. Donald Gray hauled in four receptions for 207 yards and three touchdowns, the three scores also tying a school best set by two others previously (Sammy Milner, Chad Bumphis).
MSU and Texas A&M are meeting for the 10th time and the fourth time as both members of the SEC. The Aggies lead the series, 5-4 and the series is 1-1 in games played in Starkville. The two teams have combined for 218 points in the last three meetings. MSU won the last meeting in Starkville on Oct. 4, 2014 behind five TDs from Prescott.
My Expert Pick
Aggies are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 road games vs. a team with a losing home record.
Aggies are 9-4 ATS vs. a team with a losing record.
Bulldogs are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 home games.
Give the points, go over the total in online NCAA betting.