Missouri Tigers (7-0 SU, 4-2 ATS) vs. Nebraska Cornhuskers (6-1 SU, 3-3 ATS), Week 9 College Football, 3:30 p.m. EST, Saturday, October 30, 2010, Memorial Stadium, Lincoln, Neb. TV: ABC
by Ryno of Predictem.com
Betting Odds: MO. +7.5/Neb -7.5
Over/Under Total: 55
The Missouri Tigers and Nebraska Cornhuskers are both coming off terrific wins. The Tigers won over No. 1 Oklahoma last week, while the Huskers went on the road and beat Oklahoma State. Now, these two teams will carry over their momentum to this week’s game, a game that will go a long way in the Big 12 North Division standings. Missouri is currently 2-0 in conference play and Nebraska is 2-1. The next teams after that are 2-2. That means a Tigers win would put them two games up in the division and a Cornhuskers win would tie them for first place with Missouri.
Nebraska won an absolute shootout at Oklahoma State last week, 51-41. Nebraska QB Taylor Martinez had as good a game as a quarterback can have, going 23-for-35 for 323 passing yards and five touchdowns. The Huskers ran for 222 yards on 42 carries, led by Taylor Martinez’s 112 yards on 19 carries. WR Niles Paul caught nine passes for 131 yards. Brandon Kinnie only had three catches for 62 yards but all three of them were for touchdowns. Nebraska’s defense gave up a combined 260 yards to two Oklahoma State receivers and allowed the Cowboys to run for 227 yards, including 201 and two touchdowns by Kendall Hunter.
Nebraska’s only loss came the week before, 20-13, at home to Texas. The offense was totally opposite for Nebraska in that game. The Huskers had just 77 passing yards and only had eight completions.
Missouri is undefeated and ready to prove it belongs among the elite teams in college football this season, but winning at Nebraska is a huge hurdle. After starting the season a bit slow, the Tigers have been coming on strong the last three weeks.
Last week, the Tigers knocked off Oklahoma, the No. 1 team in the BCS at that point, at home, 36-27. The game started off on a great note for the Tigers when Gahn McGaffie returned the opening kickoff 86 yards for a touchdown. After the teams traded scores for the first three quarters, Missouri took the lead early in the fourth quarter with a 38-yard touchdown pass from Blaine Gabbert to Jerrell Jackson. After a field goal, Missouri increased its lead to 15 with a 3-yard rushing touchdown by James Franklin.
Gabbert was 30-for-42 passing for 308 yards and a touchdown. The Tigers ran for 178 yards. De’Vion Moore ran for 73 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries. Jackson caught nine passes for 139 yards and a touchdown. The Tigers picked off two passes by Landry Jones and recovered a fumble. Missouri lost two fumbles. The Tigers held Oklahoma to 99 yards rushing, including only 49 by star RB DeMarco Murray.
The key in this game for both teams will be for its defense to step up and create some turnovers and stop the opposing offense. Martinez is coming off a great performance, and Gabbert is capable of dominating every week. If either team’s running game gets going, it’s going to spell trouble for the other team.
Gabbert has 1,899 passing yards, 11 touchdowns and three interceptions and is completing 67.3 percent of his pass attempts. T.J. Moe and Michael Egnew each have three touchdowns and more than 50 receptions. Jones has 2,094 passing yards, 17 touchdowns and five interceptions and is completing 66.8 percent of his pass attempts. Murray has 712 rushing yards, 11 rushing touchdowns and three receiving touchdowns.
Missouri is 4-0 ATS in its last four games overall but just 4-10 ATS in its last 14 games following an ATS win. Nebraska is 11-5 ATS in its last 16 games vs. teams with a winning record. The favorite is 4-0 ATS in the last four meetings between these teams. The home team is 6-2 ATS in the last eight meetings between these teams.
Ryno’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: I couldn’t tell you who is going to win this game straight up OR cover the spread. What I do see happening is a boatload of points being scored here. Bet the over!