Northwestern Wildcats @ Michigan State Spartans (-7)
This game was a potential top-25 matchup at the start of the year. Instead, it features two teams with losing records looking to get back on track and find a way to six wins. Although, both teams are in very different positions in their decline.
Michigan State is coming off their third straight loss after falling to BYU by 17. It adds to a very unimpressive season. Their 15-point win over Furman in week one didn’t come in impressive fashion, although they defeated a then top-25 team in Notre Dame handily, but a blowout loss to Wisconsin sent them in an uncontrollable spiral downwards.
On the other hand, Northwestern started the season 0-2, which included a loss to FCS Illinois State, but their fortune has seemed to change over the past couple of weeks. They beat a respectable Duke team, played Nebraska tough, and then took down the Iowa Hawkeyes in Iowa City. They seem to have things back on track, and a win over the Spartans this week would confirm it.
More from Iowa Football
- Bet $1, Win $365 GUARANTEED Backing Hawkeyes with Bet365 Iowa Promo!
- How Fans Can Get an Official Jersey from Fanatics This Week!
- Bet365 Iowa Promo: Bet $1 on Hawkeyes vs. Cyclones, Win $200 Bonus GUARANTEED!
- Caesars + BetMGM Iowa Promos: Win $250 GUARANTEED + Back Hawkeyes With $1,500 No-Sweat Bet!
- DraftKings + FanDuel Iowa Promos: $400 Bonus for Iowa vs Utah State Week 1
It’s a hard game to predict and get a grasp on because everyone expected both teams to be a lot better, and everyone is waiting for each of them to revert back to normality. Michigan State ranks outside the top-55 in both points per game and points allowed per game, very uncharacteristic marks for a Mark Dantonio coached team.
Even though it’s very unlike Michigan State, it’s how well they’ve played up to this point. Tyler O’Connor has not looked sharp, L.J. Scott is averaging just 4.4 yards per carry, and the defense only has four sacks on the year. Now, they take on star running back Justin Jackson and star receiver Austin Carr, who has an improving Clayton Thorson throwing him the ball.
The Spartans are 1-2 at home this year and haven’t looked good the past three weeks. Trusting Clayton Thorson is a dangerous act, but is it more dangerous than trusting Tyler O’Connor? A seven-point spread is awfully big, especially with Riley Bullough questionable to play.
Neither team is good right now. But both have the potential to be good teams at the end of the season. Will this be the week one of them finally figures it out?
Prediction: Northwestern 28 Michigan State 27