I don’t know that anyone had Michigan State as a top-10 team at any point coming into the 2021 season. Yet, here we are as Michigan State hits the road again to face Indiana.
Following an impressive win at Rutgers last weekend, the 6-0 and 10th-ranked Spartans (according to The Associated Press Top 25) continue their road trip before a bye week and with a showdown against Michigan looming on Oct. 30.
Can MSU continue to ride the momentum, or will the Spartans finally slip up?
Michigan State at Indiana: NCAA Football Odds Week 7
Oddsmakers favor Michigan State on the road
It’s another close call for the Michigan State football team in the eyes of the oddsmakers this week.
Most sportsbooks were listing MSU as a 4.5-point road favorite against Indiana as of early Tuesday. FOXBet Sportsbook had the Spartans as a 4-point favorite.
The moneylines for MSU are ranging from -185 to -195, while Indiana has been getting odds from +150 to +165.
For the over/under total, most sportsbooks were listing it at 51.5 points. BetMGM Sportsbook has the total at 52 points.
Along with a perfect record, MSU has yet to lose at the betting window this season. The Spartans are 4-0-2 against the spread this year, with the point total split three times each on the over and under. Indiana is just 1-4 against the spread, with the over hitting three times.
Michigan State is 48-17-2 all-time against the Hoosiers, but Indiana won last year’s meeting 24-0 in East Lansing.
For real-time odds updates on both sides of this matchup throughout the week, consult our game tracker above.
How to watch: Indiana Hoosiers vs. No. 10 Michigan State Spartans
- Who: Michigan State (6-0, 3-0 Big Ten) at Indiana (2-3, 0-2)
- When: Saturday, Oct. 16, Noon ET
- Where: Memorial Stadium, Bloomington, Ind.
- TV: FS1 (Announcers: Aaron Goldsmith, Brock Huard)
- Online livestream: FOX Sports app
- Radio: Michigan State Football Radio Network
- Satellite Radio: Sirius Channel 195 (MSU); Sirius Channel 210 (Indiana)
MSU explosive in win at Rutgers
Michigan State was full of explosive plays in last Saturday’s 31-13 win at Rutgers.
The Spartans had four touchdowns of 60 yards or more. That tally included three touchdown passes from Payton Thorne to Jalen Nailor, as well as a 94-yard TD run from Kenneth Walker III (pictured above). That touchdown run was the longest play from scrimmage in MSU’s football history.
MSU finished the game with 588 total yards of offense and a nice balance of 248 rushing and 340 passing.
Nailor finished with 221 yards receiving in the win, the fourth-most in MSU history.
Walker III had 232 yards rushing on 29 carries for his second 200-yard performance of the season.
Defensively, the Spartans racked up four sacks and 7.5 tackles for loss while giving up 377 yards to the Scarlet Knights. Simeon Barrow led the unit with a pair of sacks.
Kenneth Walker III a serious Heisman Trophy contender
Hopefully you jumped on Walker III as a Heisman Trophy contender prior to the season, or even after Week 1.
The junior transfer from Wake Forest is now among the favorites for the national player-of-the-year honor.
DraftKings Sportsbook is listing Walker at +1500 currently, which is fourth-shortest nationally. Alabama quarterback Bryce Young and Ole Miss quarterback Matt Corral are co-favorites at +210, while Ohio State QB CJ Stroud is at +900.
Following the season opener at Northwestern, Walker appeared on the Heisman odds lists at +8000.
2021 Heisman Trophy Odds
Walker is currently leading the nation in rushing by a wide margin. He has 912 yards through six games and is averaging 7.1 yards per carry. Syracuse’s Sean Tucker is second nationally with 791 yards.
Walker is currently on pace to threaten the MSU single-season rushing record of Lorenzo White. White set the record back in 1985 with 2,066 yards. Second on the list is Le’Veon Bell, who had 1,793 yards in 2012.
White was the last Spartan to legitimately be in the Heisman race, as he finished fourth in both 1985 and 1987.
This season, Walker has four games of more than 100 yards and three with at least 170. His numbers are even more impressive when you consider he was heavily rested against Youngstown State and had just seven carries.
Indiana coming off a bye week
Indiana needed the off week last week, as it was coming off a 24-0 loss at Penn State on Oct. 2.
The Hoosiers came into the 2021 season with a lot of buzz after going 6-2 last year, with two 1-score losses to Ohio State and Ole Miss.
But that buzz is long gone. Indiana is just 2-3 with lopsided losses to Iowa, Cincinnati and the Nittany Lions. In fairness, those are all teams ranked inside the top 10, but IU hasn’t really been competitive against two of them. They have just 6 total points over their two Big Ten games.
Indiana’s offense was expected to be electric, but ranks 99th nationally in scoring (23.8 ppg) and 107th in total offense (343.6 ypg).
Michael Penix Jr. has thrown for 939 yards and four touchdowns, but he has seven interceptions. He suffered a separation to the AC joint in his left shoulder against Penn State. Head coach Tom Allen called Penix “week to week” on Monday, but didn’t rule him out for Saturday’s game.
Should Penix be unable to play, Jack Tuttle will get the start. He is 9 of 18 for 168 passing yards on the season.
Defensively, Indiana is allowing 28.2 points per game and 351.6 yards per contest. Their rush defense ranks 48th nationally (128.6 ypg), but will have its hands full with Walker.