Saturday, November 21, 2020, Sanford Stadium, Athens, Georgia, 7:30 p.m. ET
Mississippi State at Georgia Betting Preview: Mississippi State (+24.5), Georgia (-24.5)
Mississippi State Bulldogs Betting Preview
Whether Mississippi State (2-4, 2-4 Southeastern Conference) will be able to play Saturday’s game at Georgia remains somewhat of a question after the Bulldogs had too many players sidelined last week by coronavirus issues to play their scheduled game against Auburn.
“The distractions have been very frustrating,” MSU coach Mike Leach said. “I think they have been for everybody — fans and everybody. We try to just lock into practice. To be perfectly honest, I think practice has been the most pleasant releases our players have had. I’m sure that’s probably the case around the country.”
Also frustrating for Leach has been his team’s situation at quarterback. Stanford grad transfer K.J. Costello was sensational in the opening 44-34 win over LSU, passing for 623 yards in State’s 44-34 win, but he has struggled since. His average passing yards per game has dropped to 256.6 yards a game, and he did not play against Vandy.
Freshman Will Rogers started against Vanderbilt and passed for 226 yards and a touchdown in State’s 24-17 win over the Commodores.
Whoever starts at Georgia will be facing a defense that has allowed only 20.8 points per game and ranks second in the league with 18 sacks.
The Mississippi State defense is young with 14 defensive players on the two-deep roster either freshmen or sophomores.
Veteran defensive ends Marquiss Spencer (21 career tackles for loss) and Kobe Jones (20 career tackles for loss) are a concern for with Georgia’s running game. Mississippi State is third in the SEC, allowing 127.2 yards rushing per game, and third in total defense (359.8 yards).
Georgia Bulldogs Betting Preview
No. 13 Georgia (4-2, 4-2 SEC) has lost two of its last three games, sandwiching in an unimpressive 14-3 win over Kentucky between losses to Florida and Alabama, and coach Kirby Smart may have a key decision to make regarding his starting quarterback.
Stetson Bennett hurt his shoulder against Florida and even if healthy could be on the verge of losing the job.
Smart looks to have two options.
One is D’Wan Mathis, who started and struggled in the season opener against Arkansas.
The other possibility is the intriguing JT Daniels, the highly touted transfer from Southern California who has yet to play this fall after missing most of last season with a knee injury. Daniels had been projected as the starter before the season, but his knee did not gain medical clearance in time for the season-opener and Mathis started before Bennett relieved him.
Daniels has since been cleared medically, but Smart said the competition would continue through game week.
“You just try to make the best situation you can to give your team an opportunity to win,” Smart said. “You have to put the best guys out there that give you the best opportunity to win.”
Georgia also has an issue on defense with preseason All-America candidate Richard LeCounte out for the game. He is recovering from a shoulder injury sustained in a motorcycle accident three weeks ago.
Georgia’s defense is especially tough against the run, ranking fourth nationally in allowing just 82.8 yards per game.
Mississippi State at Georgia Betting Pick for November 21, 2020
Georgia leads the series 18-6 overall and 11-2 in Athens with a 31-3 win in the last meeting in 2017 in Athens. This will be Georgia’s first home game since October 10 after two games on the road and the annual meeting Florida in Jacksonville,
Mississippi State at Georgia Betting Pick:
Georgia 28, Mississippi State 10
Mississippi State at Georgia Best Bet for November 21, 2020
Georgia has had issues with quarterback play in losing two of the last three games, and Mississippi State has never regained the magic it showed in beating LSU 44-34 in its season opener. Georgia has scored 55 points total its last three games, Mississippi State 54 in its last five.
Mississippi State at Georgia Best Bet: UNDER 44.5