Michigan State has the upper hand in the recent series against the Wolverines, and both oddsmakers and computer projections point to that trend continuing Saturday. The Spartans are favored, but have been a terrible home bet over the past few seasons.
Point spread: Michigan State opened as 3.5-point favorites, which moved quickly to -6; the total was 46.5. (Line updates and Matchup report)
Computer Prediction: 32-27 Michigan State
Why the Wolverines can cover the spread
One of the most exciting players in the nation is quarterback Devin Gardner, who ranks 15th nationally in total offense and 10th in points responsible for. He's rushed for 520 yards and nine touchdowns while he's also thrown for nearly 1,800 yards with 13 touchdowns. The Wolverines have scored 40 points in five of seven games.
Their state rivals have struggled to a 3-10 ATS mark lately at home, according to the OddsShark.com college football database.
Why the Spartans can cover the spread
The Michigan State defense ranks in the top 5 nationally in five dominant categories: rushing, passing, total, scoring and pass efficiency. Defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi has done a fantastic job in molding this unit, which might be the best in the nation right now, overall. At home, it'll be tough to penetrate.
UM is 0-5 ATS the past five times these great programs have clashed.
If you were to combine these two teams—taking Michigan's offense and Michigan State's stop unit—you just might end up with a team that could contend for the national title. But in the end, which unit will be more dominant? You have to side with the home team and a staunch defense against a one-man show. Sparty wins and covers.
Michigan State is 3-10 ATS in its last 13 games at home.
Michigan is 0-5 ATS past five vs. the Spartans (1-4 SU).