Mississippi State Bulldogs vs. Louisville Cardinals TaxSlayer Bowl Odds and Predictions

TaxSlayer Bowl College Football Wagering Lines & Sportsbook Analysis

The Mississippi State Bulldogs are seven-point college football wagering home dogs to the Louisville Cardinals in the 2017 TaxSlayer Bowl. Miss State took a major hit when former head coach Dan Mullen signed a deal to become the new head coach of the Florida Gators football team on November 26th, just two days after Sports Illustrated quoted Mullen thusly:

“I’m very, very happy here. I’m happy with what we’ve built. I think it’s pretty special. I’m fortunate to be the head coach, and [MSU athletic director John] Cohen and [MSU President Mark] Keenum have both told me that they want me to continue to be the head coach here … What we’re going to continue to do is build the program in the right direction.” Sounds like someone took the hypocritic oath.

The 2017 TaxSlayer Bowl

  • Date: Saturday, 30th December
  • Time: 12:05 PM
  • Venue: EverBank Field, Jacksonville, FL
  • Sportsbook odds:

Louisville -7 (EV) 63 (-110) -265

Mississippi St +7 (-120) 63 (-110) +225

Mississippi State: under or over?

Mullen is the second most-winning head coach in Mississippi State’s history, behind Jackie Sherrill. Mullen became, on December 26, 2016, the first football coach in SEC history to win a bowl game but still finish with a losing record on the season. Mississippi State finished the season 6-7. All told, the Bulldogs went 5-2 in bowl games in nine years under Mullen, including their last two as underdogs. But that’s all past history now. Now it’s up interim Greg Knox to pick up where Mullen left off. And if Knox knows what’s good for him he won’t tinker with Miss State’s defense. The Bulldogs have allowed just 20.4 points per game this season. Then again, Louisville has scored more than 30 points in six straight games, and Mississippi State backup QB Keytaon Thompson may end up way in over his head trying to keep up.

The Bulldogs’ defense is a major reason that the college football wagering total has gone under in five of their last seven games (they have gone 4-1 in those games). On the other hand, the over is 6-2 in Mississippi State’s last eight games when they didn’t cover, as they didn’t against Ole Miss.

Louisville: That is the offshore betting question

Cardinals starting QB Lamar Jackson ranks 16th in the nation in passing yards and 11th in rushing yards, including 995 yards and 10 TDs in the last three games. He has favoured wide receiver Jaylen Smith during that stretch. Smith has four TD receptions in those three games.

Now we have so far established that the stage is set for this game to go over, with not a little help from UofL. That doesn’t necessarily bode well for the Cards’ college football wagering odds, though. They are 1-2 in their last three over games, but 3-0 in their last three under games, which have been the last three straight. Moreover, the under is 4-0 in Louisville’s last four games in December, and 4-0 in their last four bowl games.