Tennessee +7 2.2% PLAY
Miss State is off a bye and has LSU on deck, but that’s factored into the line here. Miss State did not play well off a bye last year putting up just 3 points at LSU. They also lost their bowl game. Tennessee meanwhile played better than the final indicated alst week, and they moved to a new QB who gave this offense a spark. I see no reason why Tennessee can’t win this game outright, as they have more talent. The last 3 years Tennessee has averaged a 12.6 recruiting class compared to Miss State’s 25.6. I can’t say that Miss State’s Joe Morehead is a better coach than Jeremy Pruitt. I think both coaches are pretty similar, and both teams are pretty similar. The one difference to me is strength of schedule as Tennessee just got done facing Georgia, and Florida two teams that are better than anyone on Miss State’s schedule.
Miss State is -0.2 YPP differential compared to Tennessee’s -0.7, but their opponent differentials vary as Miss State’s opponents are +.22, but Tennessee’s are +.875. I think we are still getting value with Tennessee from their early season loss against Georgia State. This team led 13-10 at Georgia last week, and I think they match-up well here in this one, and don’t forget Tennessee won at Auburn last year and beat a Kentucky team at home that was a 10 win team.
Tennessee’s run defense has been the strength of the team. They rank 63rd, but have gone against a tough schedule opponent rank of 58th. Georgia has been the only team that has been able to run extremely well. Miss State needs to run the ball to win as they run 60% of the time and feature a running QB. While they rank 28th, they have gone against a very weak opponent run defense ranking 85.4. Tennessee also I think can get the running game going in this one, which is a big key for them, especially with a young QB. Miss State ranks 89th in defending the run, and have given up over 4 yards per carry in every single game. This is supposed to be a down year for Miss State, I think these teams are pretty even and we are getting 7 points at home.
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