The 4th-ranked Iowa Hawkeyes may be undefeated, but oddsmakers have installed them as underdogs in their Week 15 Big Ten title tilt against the 5th-ranked Michigan State Spartans. Now, the unbeaten Hawkeyes are out to build a rep to match their ranking and record when they battle the Michigan State Spartans as underdogs in the 2015 Big Ten Championship at Lucas Oil Stadium on Saturday night.
— Mike Griffith (@MikeGriffith32) December 2, 2015
The college football week 14 betting spread favors Michigan State by 3.5-points to beat Iowa. Now, let’s find out if the Hawkeyes can pull off the upset to bring home the bacon or will the Spartans win and make a case for a college football playoff berth.
A Closer Look At How To Bet The Michigan State V Iowa College Football Big 10 Title Spread
What: No. 5 Michigan State Spartans (11-1) at No. 4 Iowa Hawkeyes (12-0)
When: Saturday, December 5, 2015
Kickoff: 8:00 PM ET
Where: Indianapolis, IN
Stadium: Lucas Oil Stadium
Spread: Michigan State -3.5
Moneyline: Michigan State -175 vs Iowa +145
Game Total: 52.5
Stream: Fox Sports Go
Listen: Michigan State vs Iowa
Bet The Iowa Hawkeyes at +3.5 Because…
Iowa (12-0 SU, 7-5 ATS) picked up a hard-fought 28-20 win over Nebraska last weekend to remain unbeaten and cash in as a 2.5-point road favorite as running back Jordan Canzeri rushed for 140 yards and two scores on 17 carries while quarterback C.J. Bethard tossed one touchdown pass. Defensively, the Hawkeyes picked off Nebraska signal-caller Tommie Frazier a whopping four times.
Now, the Hawkeyes believe a win in this contest will catapult them into the four-team playoff.
"I told (the players), I said, ‘I don’t really know what to say.’ I’ve never been around a team that is 12-0. I’m a little bit speechless on that," Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said. "It is just an unbelievable accomplishment, an unbelievable effort by the players today.
"We said back in August, our goal is to be a championship-level team, a Big Ten championship-level team. So today we moved one step closer and we are very happy about that."
Bet The Michigan State Spartans at -3.5 Because…
Michigan State (11-1 SU, 5-7 ATS) pounded the snot out of Penn State in its overwhelming 55-16 Week 14 win while easily covering the spread as a 7.5-point home favorite.
Quarterback Connor Cook came back from sitting out the previous week to complete 19 of 26 passes for 248 yards and three touchdowns while leading the Michigan State offense to a stellar 8-for-11 success rate on third downs.
"Obviously, sitting out stunk," Cook said. "I’ve been very fortunate to play in a lot of games and not have to sit out. That was a reality check and made me appreciate it that much more."
The Spartans’ defense forced four turnovers in the win and limited the Nittany Lions to 5-for-15 success on third downs.
"The way it looks right now, I would think the winner of this football game goes to the college playoffs," Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio said.
"An 11-1 team that was No. 5 last week and the No. 4 team, playing an extra game. So, there’s added risk to all of this for us."
Expert Pick & Final Score Prediction
Okay, I’ll be the first person to admit that this is an absolutely gut-wrenching pick – and anyone that tells you otherwise is either an alumni of one of these Big Ten rivals or absolutely insane.
Having said that, I’m backing the Iowa Hawkeyes to get the outright win against the Spartans. The Hawkeyes have dominated almost every opponent they’ve faced this season and win ‘ugly’ by playing as a team on both sides of the ball, kind of like the Carolina Panthers are doing in the NFL right now.
Iowa has an underrated rushing attack and an equally underrated quarterback in C.J. Bethard, not to mention the fact that I believe Michigan State’s good fortune (luck) has just about run out after escaping losses against Ohio State, Michigan, Purdue and Oregon.
While Michigan State has gone 6-0 ATS in their last six neutral site games, the underdog in this rivalry has gone 5-2 ATS in their last seven meetings while the Spartans have gone just 3-9 ATS in their last 12 meetings against the Hawkeyes.
I’m going with the 43 percent of the betting public that likes the Iowa Hawkeyes cover the college football week 14 spread.