What: NCAA (College) Football
Who: Michigan State Spartans vs. Oregon Ducks
When: Sunday, September 13, 10:00am
Where: Michigan State
College Football is back in action and two teams within the AP Top 10 poll are taking on each other this Sunday in Michigan.
The #7 ranked Michigan State Spartans host the #5 Oregon Ducks after both teams survived Week 1 and came away with the win.
The Spartans showed their superior defensive line when they held cross-town rivals Western Michigan to 24 points in their 37-24 win last Saturday and it will need to be tough against the Ducks which boast an almighty offense.
The Ducks may have lost last season’s College Football Playoff championship game where they fell 42-20 to the Ohio State Buckeyes, but they will look to go one better this season without quarterback Marcus Mariota who was selected in the first round of the NFL Draft to the Tennessee Titans.
Oregon squared off against Eastern Washington in the first round and it was expected to be a walkover. Oregon scored a whopping 61 points, but their defense was anything to be desired – giving up 42 points to a much-inferior side.
This has led bookmakers to install the Spartans as 3.5 point favourites this Sunday.
Spartans vs. Ducks betting markets
Michigan State Spartans – $1.53
Oregon Ducks – $2.59
Both Michigan State and Oregon were well favoured to win their opening games and they got the job done, albeit looking a touch rusty.
There is no pre-season in college football so teams look to shake off the cobwebs in Week 1 and we can now expect a much higher quality game this week.
Most of the money has been placed on the Spartans at $1.53, which is slightly surprising as many NCAAF bettors prefer to back the more offensive sides.
This means there is plenty of ‘smart money’ on the Spartans which boast a gritty defense. The Spartans gave up only 24 points against Western Michigan and if they can produce a similar defensive effort, they will be well on their way and the $1.53 will look silly.
There is one problem, however, as the Oregon Ducks don’t slow down on offense and they score very quickly and efficiently. The Ducks scored 61 points against Eastern Washington and if you look past their poor defensive effort, there isn’t much to worry about.
Oregon amassed 731 yards of offense – almost 300 yards more than Michigan State – and they did their damage on the ground. The Ducks ran up 485 yards rushing compared with 246 through the air, but that won’t worry the Spartans one iota.
The Spartans gave up only 18 rushing yards last week. That’s an incredible statistic that should have the Ducks running scared. The big offensive line is hard to through and hard to run around, so if Oregon are planning on using their rushing game to score the bulk of points, they better think again.
Spartans vs. Ducks history and tips
The Spartans and the Ducks are played each other only five times throughout the course of history, with the Oregon Ducks holding a slight 3-2 edge.
Oregon won 46-27 last season and that was with Marcus Mariota at the helm. It won’t be so easy this season with new QB Vernon Adams – who suffered a big hit last week and could be dealing with the after effects.
It was 15 years prior where the Spartans toppled the Ducks 27-20 in Michigan and we’re seeing a trend with the other three games.
All five games between these two teams have been won by the home side. With this game being played in Michigan, the statistics tell punters to take the $1.53 and we’d have to agree.
This will be the first time since November 12, 2011 that the Ducks will not be favoured in a game. That game came against Stanford as -3 underdogs, but they won impressively 53-30.
A loss for Oregon will likely see them fall out of the Top 20 and most experts seem to think that’s inevitable. The Spartans look to be the best team moving forward and we think they will cover the spread.
Michigan State Spartans (-3.5) – $1.89 at Sportsbet.com.au