Saturday’s college football action begins in Pennsylvania with a clash between Penn State and Michigan, two Big Ten opponents with their eyes on the conference championship. Penn State entered as the underdog at home.
Protection, protection and more protection. However you want to look at it, the Colts and Nittany Lions are ranked atop the nation in most defensive categories. Penn State’s 11.9 points allowed per game is good enough for third in the nation, while Michigan is the only team in the NCAA to surrender fewer than 10 points to opposing offenses (6.7). Additionally, the two schools are ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in points per game in the Big Ten, with Michigan’s 40.7 points per game slightly outpacing Penn State’s 40.2.
Ten of the Wolverines’ 36 offensive touchdowns came from the quarterback connection between JJ McCarthy and Roman Wilson. Then there’s Blake Korm, the nation’s leading scoring running back (16 touchdowns), who will try to find a way to penetrate a Nittany Lions defense responsible for holding opposing offenses to 60.6 yards on the ground per contest.
Meanwhile, Penn State’s offensive game plan must use its backfield tandem of Kaitron Allen and Nicholas Singleton to dominate the possession and attack a slightly vulnerable Wolverine run defense. Nittany Lions quarterback Drew Allar struggled in Ohio State’s lone loss to Penn State. He’ll have to do better than the 18-for-42 he threw in that game. Aller did not throw for 250 yards during the season against West Virginia.
The total score for this match is in the mid-40s, requiring the defense to flex their muscles.
All odds from BetMGM. Looking for college football tickets? Find them here.
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Experts are opposed to the distribution
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Kickoff is set for Saturday at noon ET at Beaver Stadium in University Park. The game will be broadcast on FOX and streamed on the Fox Sports app.
Penn State football needs a big win. Beating Michigan now means everything.
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(Photo by JJ McCarthy: Aaron J. Thornton / Getty Images)