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Kansas Jayhawks vs. Southern Miss Golden Eagles

Current Betting Line: So Miss -4 - Check for line updates here

9/17/10

After an embarrassing loss to North Dakota State in the first week of play, the Kansas Jayhawks shocked most of the college football world by defeating the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 28-25. The win was the first for HC Turner Gill and it snapped an 8 game losing streak. Freshman faces were the difference in the game. QB Jordan Webb made his first collegiate start a great one by passing for 179 yards and 3 TDs. Keeping the ball rolling against Southern Miss won't be easy. The Golden Eagles put together a strong season in 2009 and will be poised to pull the upset at home.

Southern Miss was overwhelmed by a strong South Carolina team 41-13 in the first week of play. The Gamecocks are as talented as they have ever been in the Spurrier era and returned to beat the Georgia Bulldogs handily at home. The Golden Eagles took down a cupcake team, Prairie View A&M, in their second game. They won with a balanced attack of pass and run. QB Austin Davis passed for 178 yards, 1 TD, and 1 INT. The junior had an OK game, but will need to step it up against Kansas. Senior RB VJ Floyd pounded the rock 9 times for 59 yards and a TD. The most concerning thing from this game is that the Golden Eagles turned the ball over twice against an FCS opponent. That type of sloppiness won't fly against a skilled Big XII team.

As the preseason chalk to win Conference USA, this team naturally has skilled players. QB Austin Davis is being hailed as the best passer the school has seen since the legendary Brett Favre. The junior passer stands 6-2 and weighs 208 lbs. Winning a game like this would go a long way towards living up to the hype. WR DeAndre Brown corralled 47 passes for 785 yards and 9 TDs in 2009. He had a long catch of 95 yards. The junior was 2nd Team All C-USA last year and will make his QBs life much easier. However, an inexperienced offensive line will do just the opposite. The Golden Eagles have 9 starters back on defense. Their defensive line, LBs, and DBs are all top notch and among the best in their conference. Kansas won't be putting up points too easily against these boys.

The Kansas Jayhawks fans looked doom and gloom after dropping a game to North Dakota State. HC Turner Gill was able right the ship and guide his team to a big win over Georgia Tech in the following week. Winning a road game against Southern Miss would really get the heat off his back. Freshman RB James Sims ran for 101 yards and a TD in his collegiate debut. WR Daymond Patterson had 7 catches for 85 yards and a TD. The junior lacks height, but he makes up for it with speed.If Sims and QB Webb are able to sustain such production then Kansas will be in with a shot to win all their games.

Perhaps the biggest sub story out of the Kansas win over Georgia Tech, was their ability to stop the potent and deadly triple option offensive attack of the Yellow Jackets. The Jayhawks surrendered just 25 points. We have to think they can make problems for Southern Miss if they are able to do so against a much better Georgia Tech team. Senior DE Jake Laptad had 6.5 sacks in 2009. Count on him keeping pressure on the Golden Eagles inexperienced QB.

This game pits two teams that aren't too far off in terms of talent. Kansas has an edge in that area, but they don't tower over Southern Miss. The Golden Eagles were a perfect 6-0 at home in 2009. They took down the likes of UCF, Tulsa, and Virginia. Hosting Kansas at home on a Friday night will have them pumped up and ready for a big game. The Jayhawks could be susceptible to a letdown after pulling off the huge upset last week.

We hate it when the oddsmakers are correct. Remember, you can't bet every game on the board. You're lucky if you find a half dozen spots per week to step in. This isn't one of them. Last year So Miss hung tough at Kansas in a 35-28 loss. These two teams aren't far apart.  The game opened at So Miss -3 and climbed to -4 with early So Miss money. At -3 or less, we'd look at So Miss. If the line continues to rise, we'd have to take a good look at Kansas. This one figures to be close. Stay on top of the line moves right here.


 

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