A key Big Ten battle will take place in Pennsylvania on Saturday night as the Penn State Nittany Lions play host to the Michigan Wolverines. Penn State comes into the game with a 4-3 record (2-5 ATS), while the Michigan Wolverines enter the contest with a 5-2 record (3-4 ATS). Kickoff is set for 8 PM EST.
Michigan comes into this game reeling after 2 straight losses, which have slowed the optimism created in Ann Arbor by the team’s 5-0 start. The team last played two weeks ago an dropped a 38-28 contest to Iowa. Michigan boasts the number 2 offense in the NCAA in terms of yards per game, putting up a whopping 532 yards per contest. Most of this has come from freshman QB Denard Robinson, who has thrown for over 1300 yards and 9 touchdowns and added over 1000 yards and another 9 scores on the ground. He has been slowed by a shoulder injury but is listed as probable for this game and barring a major setback will definitely start. The team needs to shore up a defense that is ranked 104th in the nation in yards allowed, giving up 441 yards per game.
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Penn State has been up and down so far on the season. They won last week by a score of 33-21 over conference rival Minnesota but lost the two previous games. Injuries are a concern on the team, especially at quarterback where starter Robert Bolden is questionable with a concussion. The offense has struggled this season, even with Bolden and ranks in the bottom half of the nation in most offensive categories. The team is 99th in points scored, with just 20.3 per game and you need to be able to score to keep up with this Michigan team. The defense, on the other hand, has held opponents to just 18.3 points per game.
Michigan vs. Penn State Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Michigan Wolverines -3
@ Penn State Nittany Lions +3
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Michigan vs. Penn State Betting Predictions:
Spread Prediction (TOP PLAY) – Penn State has won the last two contests in the series straight up and has covered in 4 of the last 6 between the two teams. Something is off with the normally strong team this year as they are struggling to move the ball and put up points against opponents. Michigan has had a high flying offense this season, so if Penn State gets behind, it may be a long night. Penn State is 2-8 ATS in their last 10 games as an underdog. Michigan coach Rich Rodriquez has had 2 weeks to prepare for this game.
Game Total Prediction – There is a big contrast in styles between these two squads, as Michigan plays a high octane offensive game, while Penn State tries to slow things down and play strong defense. The Wolverines are scoring 36 points per game and allowing over 28. Penn State has struggled to score this season but may get it going against a week Michigan defense. Ten of Michigan’s last fourteen games on the road have gone over the posted total.
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