Penn State Football has performed to the level of its competitors for much of the season. This has resulted in an unusual defeat to Illinois and tight games against top-10 ranked Ohio State and MSU’s nearest rivals, Michigan Football.
The Nittany Lions face a top-15 rated Spartans squad in the season finale, who are coming off their worst loss of the season. That 56-7 thrashing by the Buckeyes where they never had a chance.
Following a strong performance against Rutgers, Penn State freshman Christian Veilleux might be rushed into his first career start. Playing Veilleux over Sean Clifford at this point in the season may be best for the program and Clifford, and it may just help the Nittany Lions capitalize on their chances.
Team News, Lions:
First and foremost, Penn State players must regain their full health. Due to flu-like symptoms, 21 players missed the Rutgers game, and the offensive line was down four starters at one point. In addition, quarterback Sean Clifford’s condition has been called into question once again. Now it’s time to applaud Penn State’s defense. Even though Rutgers didn’t bring much offense to Beaver Stadium, Penn State was still dominant.
Rutgers drove into Penn State territory on one of its 14 possessions, reaching the red zone in the third quarter. Jaquan Brisker and Arnold Ebiketie teamed up to force Rutgers quarterback Noah Vedral into a sack-fumble. Rutgers recovered but subsequently turned over possession in plenty.
Penn State’s 14th red-zone stop of the season (in 37 drives) is a remarkable accomplishment. Especially for a defense that ranks second in the country in allowing the fewest touchdowns. Brisker, Ebiketie, tackle Derrick Tangelo, linebacker Ellis Brooks, and corner-back Joey Porter Jr. have all been outstanding this season. Jordan Stout, the punter, deserves credit for trapping Rutgers within the 20-yard line on six of his eight punts.
After a lackluster performance against the Buckeyes, Michigan State is physically and psychologically exhausted. Ohio State led 49-0 at half-time and went on to win by 49 points while accumulating 655 yards of offense.
Jalen Nailor, left tackle Jarrett Horst, defensive tackle Simeon Barrow, and cornerback Charles Brantley were all inactive for the Spartans. Kenneth Walker III, the Big Ten’s leading rusher, and Jayden Reed, the team’s leading receiver, were both injured during the game.
Spartans coach Mel Tucker, like Penn State’s James Franklin, does not discuss injuries publicly. So, there will be few updates until Saturday.
Michigan State’s pass defense, on the other hand, has been obvious. The Spartans allow the most completions (341), total passing yards (3,739), and yards per game (339.9) of any of the 130 FBS teams. The number of completions is incredible, with 70 more than Hawaii, which ranks 129th with just 271 completions permitted. Penn State will almost certainly throw across Spartan Stadium, whether Clifford or Christian Veilleux start at quarterback.
Odds And Predictions
- Penn State is favored by a score of -1.
- 53.5 in total
Michigan State vs. Ohio State Game Preview
The Ohio State football team is approaching the end of the regular season, and the next two weeks will determine where the Buckeyes will play in the playoffs.
Saturday’s game versus Purdue was dominated by the Buckeyes. Yes, the defense still doesn’t seem to have it all together, but with the Boilermakers’ pass-happy offense, it’s difficult to get a fair picture.
In what is basically a playoff elimination match, Ohio State now meets Michigan State. Will the Buckeyes defense be able to stop Kenneth Walker, who many consider being the Heisman favorite? Hold on to your hats, supporters! The next two weeks are shaping up to be a rollercoaster.
Ohio State’s Victory Strategy
For the previous few weeks, Ohio State has been playing at a high level. However, since Week 2 against Oregon, Michigan will be the greatest opponent the Buckeyes have faced. The Spartans are a far more balanced squad than East Lansing has seen in recent years.
This Spartan squad has embraced head coach Mel Tucker’s physical toughness. This MSU squad does not give up, as seen by their fourth-quarter comeback victory over Michigan. And it mostly did it on the ground, behind Wake Forest transfer Kenneth Walker III’s legs.
If Ohio State hopes to leave Saturday still in playoff contention, the defense must keep Walker in check. As mentioned earlier, Kenneth is a Heisman candidate with nearly 1,500 yards and 17 touchdowns for the season.
Even if the Ohio team can bottle Walker up, they’ll have to account for an aggressive passing attack led by Payton Thorne. The Spartan quarterback has passed for close to 2,500 yards and 21 touchdowns to only eight interceptions. You’ll also hear a lot about Thorne’s childhood friend, Jaydon Reed, who is one of the top receivers in the Big Ten. The bottom line is that the Spartans have multiple weapons at their disposal.
The Spartans are only second in the Big Ten with 31 sacks, trailing only Ohio’s 33. However, Sparty ranks dead last in yards allowed per game, giving up 444 yards on average each week.
While we do not even know where the Spartans may finish in the CFP, we believe they’ll be in the top seven. That will make them the Buckeyes’ highest-ranked opponent this season. They do, however, provide some particular obstacles.
The Spartans are coming off a victory against Maryland. They won 40-21. Kenneth Walker had another excellent performance and if Ohio State hopes to leave the Shoe with a win, they’ll have to stop him. However, having the game at home is a significant advantage for them.
As for the Spartans, this will be their first time entering a setting like Ohio Stadium and facing the depth that the Buckeyes possess. The Spartans will score first, but they will be unable to stay up with Ohio State’s high-powered attack. In the second half, Ohio State pulls away to set up a rematch with archrival Michigan State.
- Ohio State defeats Michigan State by a score of 42 to 24.
- Ohio State is an 18.5-point favorite.
Already this season, the Spartans have come behind as underdogs against the Wolverines. They may do the same against the Buckeyes so don’t ignore the Spartans Moneyline at +750.
Michigan State vs Maryland Game Preview
The Spartans (-12.5) will face the Terrapins (+425 on the Moneyline to win) on November 13, 2021, at 4:00 PM ET. The point total for this clash has been set at 62 points by bookmakers.
We’ll go over everything you need to know before betting on the game in this post. Key data, betting patterns, club, and individual facts, and updated odds are all included.
The passing attack of the Spartans averages 8.8 yards per attempt (22nd in the FBS). The Terrapins are allowing 7.9 passes per pass (95th in college football).
Michigan State’s offense, which averages 34.0 points per game, is rated 27th in the FBS. Maryland’s defense ranks 97th in the US, allowing 30.4 points per game.
In terms of yards per game, the Spartans are placed 27th in the FBS (446.1). They take on a Terrapins defense that ranks 92nd in the country, allowing 403.4 yards per game.
Michigan State is rated 68th in college football in sacks allowed (eight) and will face Maryland, who is ranked sixth in sacks allowed (15).
Players To Watch
- Payton Thorne has thrown for 2,174 yards and 17 touchdowns while completing 61.9% of his passes (151-of-244).
- Kenneth Walker III has 1,329 running yards (147.7 yards per game) and 15 touchdowns on the season.
- Jayden Reed has caught 37 receptions for 715 yards and five touchdowns, which leads the team.
- Jalen Nailor is another player to watch as he has 587 yards and six touchdowns on 31 receptions. This season, he has an average of 73.4 receiving yards per game.
The Terrapins average 316.1 passing yards per game (12th in the FBS), while the Spartans allow 326.7 per game (130th in college football).
On a per-carry basis, Michigan State’s defense ranks 14th, allowing 3.3 yards per run. Maryland gets 3.4 yards per run on average (111th in the FBS).
The Terrapins’ pass defense has allowed 11, which ranks them 34th in NCAA football. The Spartans’ defense has racked up 18 points (third-most).
Maryland is 111th in the FBS with 113.6 running yards per game. On the ground, Michigan State’s defense allows 115.4 yards per carrying (22nd in college football).
Players To Watch
- Taulia Tagovailoa has 2,755 yards passing and a 70.5% completion rate.
- Tayon Fleet-Davis has 436 running yards (48.4 per game) and six touchdowns on 87 attempts.
- Challen Faamatau has 235 yards and three running touchdowns on 56 runs (33.6 yards per carry).
- Rakim Jarrett has 37 catches for 533 receiving yards (59.2 per game) and five touchdowns this season.
- Dontay Demus has 28 catches for 507 yards and three touchdowns to his credit.
- Chigoziem Okonkwo has caught 31 receptions for 263 yards this season.
Bet Prediction And Odds
- Maryland +340 | Michigan State -475 are the money lines.
- ATS (against the spread): +12.5, -108 Maryland | Michigan State -12.5, -112
- 62.5, O: -110 | U: -110
Michigan State vs Purdue Boilermakers Game Preview
Michigan State will travel to Purdue this week after hosting and defeating rivals Michigan in a top-10 battle on Saturday. Predictions are they’ll be favored by less than a field goal against Purdue.
According to bookmakers, the Spartans were 2.5-point favorites over Purdue on Sunday. The Boilermakers are 5-3 on the season, but they have already beaten a top-5 opponent. Purdue defeated then-No. 2 Iowa 24-7 three weeks ago. Purdue then proceeded to defeat Nebraska 28-23 on the road on Saturday.
After defeating Michigan 37-33 on Saturday, Michigan State climbed into the top five in the Associated Press poll. The Spartans were four-point underdogs in that game and instead won by four.
5 Keys To Purdue Vs Michigan State
Nailor’s Status Is Uncertain
The Spartans lost Jalen Nailor to a right-hand injury near the conclusion of the first half on Saturday. Tucker would not speak about the incident after the game, but he returned to the bench after half-time with his hand firmly wrapped in neon green tape and dark green tape around his middle fingers.
Nailor and Jayden Reed have combined for 1,074 yards, 54 receptions, and 11 touchdowns on the ground. Keep an eye on junior Montorie Foster, who filled in for Nailor against the Wolverines and made two 15-yard receptions.
Late-game Shambolic Defence
MSU’s defense struggled once again on third down, enabling the Wolverines to convert 8 of 17 opportunities and a fourth-down conversion. The Spartans are 76th in the country and 12th in the Big Ten for allowing opponents to convert over 40% of third-down tries.
On fourth down, they rank 109th with a conversion percentage of 65.4%. MSU’s offense is also having trouble converting third downs, going 4 of 12 on Saturday and converting just 34.3% of its third-down tries this season, ranking 111th in the country. Purdue’s defense ranks fourth in the Big Ten, allowing only 33.3% of opponents’ third-down attempts to be converted.
Problems with Passing
Payton Thorne didn’t throw any touchdown versus Michigan and had only 196 passing yards, two interceptions, and three sacks. The sophomoric quarterback will face a Purdue team that is second in the Big Ten and tenth nationally in pass interceptions, allowing only 174.0 yards (0.16 km) per game.
The Boilermakers have a league-low 52.2% completion and are tied for 14th in the Football Bowl Subdivision with 10 interceptions. Thorne has thrown for 1,897 yards, 15 touchdowns, and six interceptions this season. Four of those interceptions came in his past two games when he failed to exceed 200 yards passing against Indiana and Michigan.
Mel Tucker To Bring the Receipts:
After upsetting top-10 Michigan, Michigan State faces unranked Purdue in a match-up ripe for a trap game. But their head coach, Mel Tucker, is well-versed in the team’s history. Purdue has more wins over top-five teams as an unranked team (16) than anybody else in NCAA history. That’s according to Tucker.
Heartbreakers or Boilers?
Purdue’s most recent shock victory occurred a few weeks ago when the unranked Boilermakers defeated then-No. 2 Iowa 24-7 as 11-point underdogs. Tucker is well aware that this is the kind of fate his team must avoid.
Odds for Purdue Vs Michigan State
When the No. 5 Michigan State Spartans (-3) (8-0, 0-0 Big Ten) play the Purdue Boilermakers (+3) (5-3, 0-0 Big Ten) at Ross-Ade Stadium on Saturday, November 6, 2021, the bookmakers favor the Spartans. Michigan State is a three-point favorite. The event also has a 54-point over/under.