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Central Michigan vs. Michigan State,
9-29-2018 - Pick and Prediction

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Game Snapshot with Current Line

#113 Central Michigan
Chippewas
#114 Michigan State
Spartans

Saturday, September 29, 2018 at 12:00pm

Image licensed from USA Today Sports

Game Stats

Central Michigan Chippewas

1 - 3

3-1
ATS
1-3
O/U
14
PPG
23
OPPG

Michigan State Spartans

2 - 1

1-2
ATS
2-1
O/U
28
PPG
22
OPPG

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The Mid-American Conference meets the Big 10 conference on Saturday afternoon as the Central Michigan Chippewas duke it out with the 18th ranked Michigan State Spartans. This contest will take place at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing, Michigan. The Chippewas enter this game off a 17-5 home win over Maine, while Sparty checks in off a 35-21 road win over Indiana. These teams last met back in 2015 and the Spartans won that game by a score of 30-10.   

Defense Was Strong Against The Black Bears

The Central Michigan Chippewas come in off a 17-5 win over the Maine Black Bears. They are not really known for their defense, but that defense showed up and was very strong in the win over the Black Bears. They allowed them just 265 yards of total offense in the game, including just 82 yards on the ground and at 2.2 yards per carry. They will look for another solid effort against the run as they are taking on a Michicago State squad that has struggled to run the ball. The Chippewas are 103rd against the run this year, but just 6th against the pass and 37th in total defense. The Chippewas come in ranked 62nd in points allowed, giving up 23.8 ppg. They have played solid defense this year and their 6th ranked pass defense will get a real test against Brian Lewerke and company.

The offense has been their big issue this year and it isn’t likely to get a whole lot better against a solid Big 10 defense.  Despite their win over the Black Bears, they had just 177 yards of total offense, including just 82 yards through the air. Tommy Lazzara got his first start at QB in this one and he threw for 82 yards and a TD while rushing for 44 yards and a TD in the win over the Black Bears. Lazzara has now hit just 52.6% of his passes for 210 yards with two TDs and two INTs while rushing for 98 yards and two TDs in two games played so far.  games. The Chippewas are 129th in the nation in total offense, 122nd in passing and 112th in rushing. This is a bad offensive team. They have averaged just 15.0 ppg, which is 128th in the land.

Sparty Starts 1-0 In the Big 10

Michigan State is 2-1 on the year, but they haven’t really looked as dominant as many felt they would. They barely got past Utah State in their opener and then lost on the road to Arizona State. They had a solid game this past weekend as they topped Indiana on the road by a score of 35-21. They are now at 1-0 in the Big 10, but they have yet to look like a team that could take down either Ohio State or Michigan in the Big 10 East. The Spartans are led by their defense and they held the Hoosiers to just 301 yards of total offense, including just 29 yards on the ground. It is very tough to run on the Spartans as they are tops in the nation at defending the run, allowing just 32.7 ypg. They should have little trouble in stopping the Chipps 112th ranked ground attack. Sparty can be passed on as they are 124th in the land against the pass, but CMU has struggled to throw the ball more than they have struggled to run it.

On offense, the Spartans have not been as good as they were expecting to be. They are normally a strong running team, but they check into this game ranked just 113th in the nation in rushing at 119.7 ypg. LJ Scott had 898 and 994 yards rushing the last two years respectively, but he has just 103 yards through three games so far. The offensive line is beaten up and that has contributed to his struggles. The passing game has been solid, which was expected. Brian Lewerke had 213 yards passing with two TDs and two INTs last week against the Hoosiers and has now thrown for 814 yards with five TDs and four INTs on the year. The Spartans are 38th in the land in passing at 273.3 ypg. Michigan State is also 86th in total offense (393 ypg) and 78th in scoring at 28.7 ypg. CMU has been tough on defense so far and that could make it tough for MSU to move the ball consistently.

The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.

Full-Game Side Bet
Rating:

Michigan State has not lived up to the hype this year so far and they are in a clear sandwich spot against a team that plays very good defense. They had a tough game with Indiana last week and have Northwestern on deck. Sparty plays well in this series, but back in 2015, they won by just 20. Their offense has struggled for the most part this year and CMU has allowed 334 ypg overall, including just 140 ypg through the air. They can be run on, but Sparty has not run the ball well at all. The Chippewas have struggled on offense this year, but they should get just enough to grab a cover in this game. I see the Chippewas losing by no more than 21 points in this one.

Defense is will be the name of the game in this one. The Chippewas have one of the worst offenses in the nation and will be going up against a tough Big 10 defense. I would not look for them to put up more than 10 points in this one. The Spartans have thrown the ball well, but they will look to get their ground game going in this one, especially since the Chippewas have struggled to stop the run and that will eat up clock. We also note that the Chippewas come in ranked 6th in the nation against the pass and they should be able to slow down Lewerke enough in this game. I see MSU winning by a score of 28-7.  

Prediction: Central Michigan +28.5

Full-Game Total Pick
Rating:

Defense is will be the name of the game in this one. The Chippewas have one of the worst offenses in the nation and will be going up against a tough Big 10 defense. I would not look for them to put up more than 10 points in this one. The Spartans have thrown the ball well, but they will look to get their ground game going in this one, especially since the Chippewas have struggled to stop the run and that will eat up clock. We also note that the Chippewas come in ranked 6th in the nation against the pass and they should be able to slow down Lewerke enough in this game. I see MSU winning by a score of 28-7.

Prediction: Under

Half-Time Side Pick
Rating:

The Chipps have not played well at home, but they have been very competitive in their two road games so far. The Spartans are in an Indiana/ Northwestern sandwich and that should not have them focused, especially early on. CMU’s defense should play well early in this one.

Prediction: Central Michigan +17.5

Half-Time Total Bet
Rating:

The Chipps have no offenses at all and will struggle to score in this one. the good news is that their defense has been very tough, especially against the pass. The Spartans will look to get their running game going against a porous CMU run defense and that will chew up plenty of clock in this one. Take the Under at the break.

Prediction: Under 24.5

David Hess (@DavidHess311)

I have always had a fascination with numbers and sports, so I combined the two to become a handicapper and a blogger. I love sports and I love writing about them and all the info I put in my blogs is well-thought-out and well-researched. I am a big fan of all the major sports and the colleges, plus I know golf pretty well, tennis and the WNBA. I am very versatile. Hope you enjoy my content.

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