Big stakes, angles in CFB Rivalry Week

By Steve Makinen  (VSiN.com) 

November 23, 2021 06:52 PM
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We’ve reached another Thanksgiving weekend on the college football schedule, and you know what that means: Rivalry Week. This year’s slate offers a ton of huge rivalry games, some with massive stakes for conference titles or the College Football Playoff. The rich history of these series evokes a lot of tradition and pride among fans. But more importantly for bettors, these games offer some very significant angles from a head-to-head series standpoint to the defined strengths of the teams. Let’s take a look at 23 such games.

THURSDAY

Ole Miss at Mississippi State

Line/total: Mississippi State by 1/61

The Egg Bowl used to be so big that it single-handedly occupied football fans’ viewing options on Thanksgiving night. The holiday football feast has expanded with the NFL in recent years, and the Mississippi State-Ole Miss rivalry has suffered on a national scale. However, this year’s game should be good, with both teams heading to bowl games and the Rebels featuring QB Matt Corral, in the running as the top pick in next spring’s NFL draft. Coaches Mike Leach and Lane Kiffin are also headline material, and those two have put some flair back into the series, which in its heyday featured fights breaking out in the stands before, during and after games. In 1926, the fighting got so ugly after the first Ole Miss victory in 13 years that officials came up with the concept of the Golden Egg Trophy, awarded to the winner in a formal ceremony each year. It was supposed to reduce the ugliness, but instead the fans just fought outside the stadium instead of in it.

Key matchup trend: Ole Miss is 12-4 ATS over the last three years vs. rushing defenses yielding fewer than 3.6 yards per carry.

Series trend: The last five games of the Egg Bowl rivalry at Mississippi State went Under the total.

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