Michigan State +10.5 2.2% play
This feels like a game Michigan State would win. The only thing keeping me off making this a larger play, and a play on the money line is the fact that this is Michigan State’s 3rd road game in 4 weeks. Michigan State has a balanced defense and they have faced the tougher schedule by far. The two have a common opponent in Northwestern, and Michigan State was +74 yards on the road while Wisconsin struggled at home -9 yards.
I think this line is inflated for a few different reasons. The idea that Jack Coan is a superior QB, because of his stat line, and completion %, but he did not look good at all vs. Northwestern. Wisconsin’s offensive line does have vulnerability in pass protection and they are going up against a Michigan State team that can get to the QB Ranking 36th in sack % and have a 20.7% havoc rate. Also, Michigan State gave up 300+ yards rushing to Ohio State last week, but that was against Ohio State on the road at night, against a superior QB, that not only has a great arm, but can run the ball.
Wisconsin’s defense is ranked #1, but I would question that a little bit as they have faced an average offense ranking 95.2 in ypp offense. Michigan State’s offense actually has not been that bad ranking 64th, which is good when you consider they have faced an average defense ranking 43.5 in ypp allowed. Michigan State is getting completely disrespected here, and the one thing most people won’t talk about is the hidden yardage on special teams. Wisconsin ranked 101st last year in special teams efficiency, and this year they rank 115th. Michigan State ranks around 49th, but they have an excellent punter in Jake Hartbarger who is averaging 47.63 yards per punt. Major advantage in special teams for Michigan State.
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