The Penn State Nittany Lions are 0-3 straight up and against the spread in their last three games against the Michigan Wolverines, losing by an average margin of 18.7 points per game over that stretch. The Nittany Lions will try to break this losing trend with a victory over their Big Ten rivals this Saturday night.
Penn State is a 9.5-point home favorite in Happy Valley at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com, though the line opened at 12.5. The home team is 4-1 SU and ATS in the last five games in this series.
Michigan Wolverines at Penn State Nittany Lions
When: Saturday, October 21, 7:30 p.m. ET
Where: Beaver Stadium, University Park, Pennsylvania
Betting Line / Total: Penn State -9.5 / 45 Points
Penn State Nittany Lions
The Nittany Lions have rolled through the first half of their schedule in dominant fashion, averaging 39.7 points per game on offense while allowing only nine points per game on defense. Penn State was a huge favorite in all six of those games, however; this upcoming stretch at home against Michigan and then on the road against Ohio State and Michigan State will show what the Nittany Lions are made of this season.
Penn State Heisman hopeful Saquon Barkley has amassed 1,044 yards of total offense and eight total touchdowns so far.
Michigan beat Penn State 49-10 last September. Since then, the Nittany Lions are 14-1 SU and 13-1-1 ATS over their last 15 games according to the OddsShark College Football Database.
The Wolverines have the best total defense in the nation allowing only 224 yards per game and rank eighth in scoring defense allowing 14.7 points per game.
But with an offense that ranks 79th nationally in scoring with 27.3 points per game, the team has produced a disappointing 2-3-1 ATS record to go along with its 5-1 SU record. Michigan is 0-10 SU and 5-5 ATS in its last 10 games as a betting underdog.
Saturday night’s total is set at 45 points. The OVER is 4-1 in the last five games between these two teams.
On paper, this game features two elite defenses, and Penn State has the edge thanks to its more productive offense and home field advantage. Whether or not that edge is worth the 9.5 points Penn State is laying will likely be determined by how well Barkley can perform against a rushing defense that ranks sixth in the nation allowing only 85.8 yards per game.