Matchup: #3 Auburn at #4 Ole Miss (-1.5, 51 at JustBet)
Date/Time: Saturday, November 1st @ 7:00 pm (EST)
Location: Oxford, MS (airing on ESPN)
Preview: The #3 ranked Auburn Tigers travel to Oxford Mississippi to take on the #4 ranked old miss rebels in a key SEC match up with huge national championship implications.
Ole Miss suffered their first loss of the season last weekend losing at LSU 10-7 in what was a very physical and defensive football game. One of the nation’s top defenses were dominated at the line of scrimmage by the Tigers’ rushing attack allowing 264 yards on the ground. Bo Wallace was ineffective against a stout LSU defense completing only 14 of 33 pass attempts for only 176 yards with 1 touchdown and a costly interception in the final minutes. Ole Miss still ranks first in the nation in scoring defense allowing just 10.5 yards points per game, yet the run defense was a tad bit exposed last Saturday as Les Miles’ squad ran right at the Ole Miss front 7 and wore them down throughout the game.
The Auburn Tigers coming to Saturday’s match up at 6–1 and 3–1 in SEC play. The Tigers escaped with a 42–35 win over South Carolina last weekend, rebounding from a 38–23 loss at Mississippi State. To no one’s surprise the Tigers are running the ball with great success averaging 281 yards on the ground per game. The leading rusher is Cameron Artis-Payne, who has 831 yards and 6 touchdowns. Quarterback Nick Marshall is second in rushing on the team with 581 yards and 7 touchdowns, averaging 6.8 yards per carry. Marshall has also improved as a passer with completing 58.3% of his passes for 1103 yards and 11 touchdowns. His main target is D’haquille Williams, who has 34 receptions for 527 yards and 5 touchdowns. Auburn’s defense is giving up 5.07 yards per play and averaging 362 yards per game. They are respectable against the run, ranking 25th in the nation in run defense allowing 120.4 yards on the ground per game.
In any other situation, I would most likely favor the home team in this game, however Ole Miss just came off a very physical game and also will be without standout linebacker Denzel Nkemdiche, which is a big blow especially in run defense. I do expect the physical running style of Auburn to take its toll on the Ole Miss defense and wear them down throughout the game. Auburn seems to be clicking offensely which is bad news for a banged up Ole Miss defensive unit. I like getting the points here with a more experienced Auburn team and a better coach in Gus Malzahn. I can’t trust Bo Wallace in big games, and I’d much rather be getting points with the dual threat quarterback with a lot more big game experience. I believe Ole Miss was exposed last week and I think the Auburn rushing attack will be effective enough to grind out a win on the road. Auburn wins on Saturday night.
2014 Week 10 NCAA Football Pick: Auburn +1.5, Over 51
Auburn at Ole Miss Score Prediction: Auburn 28 – Ole Miss 24