Wisconsin at Michigan State - 10/15/22 College Football Picks and Prediction

Michigan State Spartans (2-4) vs Wisconsin Badgers (3-3)

Game Info: Saturday, October 15, 2022 at 4:00 pm (Spartan Stadium)

Betting Odds: Michigan State Spartans +4.5 -- Over/Under: 48 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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Wisconsin will travel to East Lansing and take on Michigan State from Spartan Stadium in Big Ten action this Saturday on FOX. The Spartans and Badgers have met sporadically since the expansion of the Big Ten. Michigan State leads the all-time series 30-24, but Wisconsin has won the last two matchups.

Wisconsin is 3-3 after beating Northwestern in Week 6. An offensive outburst no one saw coming gave the Badgers their third blowout of the season and their first under Jim Leonhard. The coaching change was unexpected, but Wisconsin responded well and outgained Northwestern 515-342.

Wisconsin is averaging 32.1 points per game, while passing for 264.3 yards per game (70th), and rushing for 153.2 yards per game (125th). Defensively, the Badgers allow 26.6 points per game, and give up 320.5 yards per game.

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Graham Mertz exploded for a season-high 299 passing yards and a career-best five touchdowns against Northwestern. While it’s unlikely he replicates that performance again this season, it’s a great sign going forward for the Wisconsin offense. Mertz is now up to a respectable 1,296 passing yards with 13 touchdowns to five interceptions on the season. Braelon Allen had another big game for the Badgers out of the backfield. The sophomore back rushed for 135 yards versus the Wildcats, which impressively marked his third highest outing of the season. Allen is among Big Ten leaders with 634 rushing yards and six scores. Chimere Dike had a career-day versus Northwestern, and he now leads Wisconsin in receptions (25) and receiving yards (442).

Michigan State dropped to 2-4  after losing to Ohio State in Week 6. The Spartans were overmatched by the combo of C.J. Stroud and Marvin Harrison Jr, and fell behind early in the matchup. The Spartans were massively outgained by the Buckeyes, 614-202. After posting a 11-2 record last season, Mel Tucker’s team needs to pick it up here and bounce back.

Michigan State is averaging 32.1 points per game, while passing for 264.3 yards per game (70th), and rushing for 153.2 yards per game (125th). Defensively, the Cougars allow 26.6 points per game, and give up 445.5 yards per game.

Payton Thorne’s struggles have been a thorn in Sparty’s side early. The junior quarterback has thrown interceptions in five of the first six games, and his risk taking keeps leaving the MSU defense in compromising positions. Thorne has thrown for 1,234 passing yards with nine touchdowns to five interceptions on the season. Jalen Berger will look to get something going against his former school here. The sophomore back started his Spartan career with a pair of 100-yard outings, but he’s struggled since, only amassing 308 rushing yards for the season. Jayden Reed has been a stud at wideout again this season, and he’s up to 23 receptions for 256 receiving yards and two scores on the season.

Wisconsin is 3-3 against the spread this season, with a 1-1 record on the road. The Badgers are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 conference games. Michigan State is 2-4 ATS this season, with a 2-2 record at home. The under is 4-1 in the Spartans last 5 home games.

Is the Wisconsin offense alive or was it just the Northwestern defense? WIll the bleeding stop for Michigan State prior to their bye week? A lot of question marks heading into this weekend for both sides, but there is one thing we can rely on when in doubt when it comes to Big Ten football: defense and the element of mother nature.  

It will be chilly and windy, with a high chance of precipitation. This tailors more to Wisconsin’s game, but with the margin seeming a bit high for them as road favorites, I’ll roll with the Big Ten under here.

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The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a PickDawgz site consensus.

Mitch's Take...

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