The Minnesota Golden Gophers might be unbeaten, but they’re still underdogs in their Week 5 road date against a Penn State team that suffered a resounding loss in Week 4. The week 5 college football spread favors Penn State by a field-goal to beat Minnesota.
With the Gophers looking for the outright road win, let’s find out if Penn State can hold down the fort at home.
Bet The Minnesota Vs Penn State Spread
What: Minnesota Golden Gophers (3-0) at Penn State Nittany Lions (2-2)
When: Friday, September 30, 2016
Start Time: 3:30 PM ET
Where: University Park, PA
Stadium: Beaver Stadium
Spread: Penn State -3
Moneyline: Minnesota +135 vs Penn State -155
Game Total: 56
Listen: Minnesota vs Penn State
After beating Colorado State 31-24 as a 17-point favorite in Week 4, the Golden Gophers have a chance to start 4-0 for the first time since the 2013 season.
Quarterback Mitch Leidner completed 16 of 20 passes for 174 yards with no touchdowns and one interception, but running back Rodney Smith led the way to victory by rushing 17 times for 99 yards and two touchdowns. Fellow running back Shannon Brooks rushed 13 times for 85 yards and one score and the Gophers won the turnover battle 2-1.
For the season, Leidner is completing 64.5 percent of his passes for 599 yards with four touchdowns and one interception. Leidner has thrown at least one touchdown pass in nine of his last 11 games. The Gophers are ranked a surprising 33rd in scoring (39.7 ppg) and impressive 57th nationally in points allowed (25.0 ppg).
I don’t want to overdo it, but hell, Penn State looked like a bunch of middle school girls playing with a Nerf football in their demoralizing 49-10 Week 4 blowout loss at the hands of No. 4 Michigan last weekend. The Nittany Lions never came close to covering the spread as 18-point underdogs.
Quarterback Trace McSorley completed 16 of 27 passes for 121 yards with one touchdown and one interception and running back Saquon Barkley was held to a modest 59 rushing yards. The Nittany Lions also gave up 515 yards of total offense to Michigan and lost the time of possession battle by almost 10 full minutes.
For the season, McSorley is completing 63.2 percent of his passes for 949 yards with five touchdowns and three interceptions. McSorley has thrown seven touchdown passes in his last five games. Penn State averages 29.0 points per game (73rd) while allowing a whopping 32.8 points per game defensively (98th).
How To Bet The Minnesota Vs Penn State Spread
I have no idea why Penn State is favored in this contest after seeing the Nittany Lions’ last performance against Michigan. Now, heading into this Week 5 Big Ten battle, I also believe the Nittany Lions will struggle against a Minnesota team that has looked really solid through three games.
The Gophers have some dangerous talent at the skill positions and a steady quarterback that has thrown only one interception this season. Not only that, but Minnesota plays a sound defensive scheme that could pose problems for Penn State’s mostly young offensive unit.
While the Gophers are just 2-5 SU in their last seven road games, the Gophers are also 17-5 ATS in their last 22 conference games and 5-2 ATS in their last seven road games. Penn State is 2-6 SU in its last eight games, 1-7 ATS in their last eight games and 0-4 ATS in their last four conference games. I like the Minnesota Golden Gophers to cover the spread by winning outright.