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Texas A&M

vs.

Missouri

College Football

Pick

Analysis

11/30/13

This is it. Missouri needs one more win to improbably claim the SEC East. At the beginning of the year, no one saw this coming as the Tigers were projected to be the fifth or sixth best team in the division, but could now be the best. Texas A&M has been killed by a lackluster defense this season and are just hoping to get a respectable bowl game. Missouri is a -4.5 point favorite at home against their old Big 12 foe at 5 dimes sportsbook.

The Aggies were supposed to be one of the best teams in the country, but already have three losses and that could easily change to four this weekend. Against anyone respectable, their defense cannot do anything, giving up 49 points to Alabama and 45 to Auburn in losses. And then last weekend, it was Johnny Manziel and the offense that was stunned, only scoring 10 points against LSU. Once thought to give Alabama a run for its money, the Aggies are nowhere to be found.

On the other end, Missouri is no fluke. The only thing separating them from being undefeated is a 17-point fourth quarter by South Carolina. In every other game, the Tigers have looked dominant, winning at Georgia by 15 points, at Ole Miss by 14 and against Florida by 19. They are the No. 5 team in the country for a reason.

It's simple for the Aggies, they can't play defense. Even though Manziel is putting up 45 points per game for the offense, it hasn't mattered. And it's unlikely he'll be stopped for the second straight week after LSU contained him for the entire game. Outside of Manziel, they don't have an effective running back, which has also hurt in these games. Because of that, defenses can focus solely on Manziel. Still, Manziel has 40 total touchdowns and 13 interceptions. Defenses are focused on stopping the deep ball to WR Mike Evans lately and it shows in the numbers. After his hot start, Evans only has one 100-yard game in his last four contests. Missouri's defense is solid as well, so it wouldn't be surprising if they kept Manziel in check for a little bit, especially at home.

On the other end, James Franklin returned last weekend which is a good sign for the Tigers. While he didn't have the best of games without a touchdown, they got the win. Add another week of practice and Franklin will be ready to roll. WRs L'Damian Washington and Dorial Green-Beckham have been huge for with nine TDs apiece. In addition, the Tigers actually have a running game. Henry Josey has been the main benefactor with increased touches as he has 855 yards and 12 TDs for the year. Russell Hansbrough and Marcus Murphy are also solid backups.
 
 It's hard to see how the Aggies will stop Franklin and company from getting 30-40 points. They haven't really stopped anyone in conference play, especially on the road. Playing for a berth in the SEC Championship game at home, you have to think that Missouri will be hyped on both sides of the ball.

Manziel destroyed this defense last year in a 59-29 win, but things look a little different this time around.

The Aggies are 6-0 ATS in their last six games following a straight up loss, but are 1-4 ATS vs. a team with a winning record and just 1-5 ATS in their last six conference games. The Tigers are 6-1 ATS in their last seven conference games, but just 2-8 ATS in their last 10 home games vs. a team with a winning road record.

Even the betting public has turned against Johnny Football. 86% of the action at sportsbook.com as of Tuesday has been on Missouri.

Our Pick - Missouri -4

 

 

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