No. 15 Texas A&M Aggies (5-1 SU, 4-2 ATS) vs. No. 24 Ole Miss Rebels (5-2 SU, 4-3 ATS)
College Football Week 8
Date/Time: Saturday October 24th, 7:00PM EST
Where: Vaught-Hemingway Stadium Oxford, M.S.
by Jay, NCAA Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: A&M +6/MISS -6
Over/Under Total: 65
One week after suffering a big upset loss to rival Memphis, the no. 24 Ole Miss Rebels will look to rebound this Saturday when they host the no. 15 Texas A&M Aggies in Oxford. The Aggies are also coming off a disappointing loss this week and will be attempting to bounce back. Texas A&M actually suffered their first loss of the season last week in a 41-23 beating at the hands of Alabama. However, Kevin Sumlins Aggies are still very much alive in the SEC West if they can get back on track with a tough road victory this Saturday over the Rebels.
Mississippi ran into a buzz saw last week against Justin Fuente and the still unbeaten Memphis Tigers. Despite being a 10 point favorite, the Rebels were dominated on both sides of the ball to a much hungrier Memphis team. It was the 2nd time in the last 3 weeks that the Rebels were punched in the mouth going back to their 38-10 whipping at the hands of Florida. Now Hugh Freeze has to rally his guys and get things back on track so they do not replicate last years collapse. After starting 7-0 last year with wins over Alabama and Texas A&M, the Rebels were in sole control of the SEC West before they lost 4 of their final 6 games. After a similar strong start this season, the Rebels have to get things turned around this week or it is going to look like 2014 all over again.
For that to happen, I believe Mississippi has to get some of their confidence back on the defensive side of the football. Last week defensive lineman Robert Nkemdiche went down with a concussion and the defense was shredded for nearly 500 yards of total offense. Memphis quarterback Paxton Lynch threw for nearly 400 yards in the victory which only heightens the concerns going into this weeks showdown with Texas A&M. The Aggies have a strong reputation for tossing the football around and posting big offensive number. Texas A&M quarterback Kyle Allen is a very talented passer and he is worthy of big performances.
If the Rebels are unable to get pressure on Allen, they are going to be in for a long afternoon. Offensively, the Aggies generate a lot of opportunities with their quick paced offense. In fact, Allen has attempted at least 40 passes in his last two games against SEC competition. Judging by the way the Ole Miss defense faltered against the pass last week late in the 2nd half, they could have trouble again if they do not find ways to disrupt the Aggies passing attack. Allen is a very accurate passer and WR Christian Kirk is a big time go to threat on the outside. Both of which do not favor well for the Rebels.
However the good news is that if the Rebels defense can play better on defense, they still have plenty of talent to combat the Aggies shaky defense on the other side of the football. Quarterback Chad Kelly is hitting 65% of his passes on the season with 16 touchdowns and 7 picks. The Rebels quarterback has thrown for over 300 yards per game on average this season and WR Laquon Treadwell is started to become the beast he was before last years season ending broken leg injury against Auburn.
Last week Treadwell was one of the only guys on the Rebels offense that could not be stopped. He caught 14 passes for 144 yards with a touchdown and also threw a 68 yard touchdown pass on the 2nd play from scrimmage on a trick play. Treadwells return to dominance is huge for an offense that has benefitted from the surprising play of Kelly behind center. Therefore if this team can sustain their offensive prowess and get their defense back on track, then they should be able to close out the season on a strong note.
Jay’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: I like Ole Miss in a bounce back role here. The Rebels defense returns aggressively and gets the job done. Take Ole Miss -6
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