What: #7 Michigan State Spartans (1-0; 0-0 B1G) at #3 Oregon Ducks (1-0; 0-0 Pac-12)
Where: Autzen Stadium — Eugene, OR
When: Saturday Sept. 6th at 6:30pm ET
TV / Radio: FOX / Spartan Radio Network
Latest Line: Oregon by 13
Key Players: Oregon QB Marcus Mariota, MSU QB Connor Cook, Oregon RB Byron Marshall, MSU RB Jeremy Langford
Matchup To Watch: Michigan State Defense vs Oregon Offense
In arguably the biggest non-conference game for the Big Ten Conference in 2014, the #7 Michigan State Spartans head to the Pacific Northwest to face the #3 Oregon Ducks and their high tempo led by Heisman-hopeful Marcus Mariota. The biggest matchup of the day will be when Oregon has the ball, with the Ducks’ offense going head to head against the dominating defense of Michigan State.
This game is about more than just wins and losses. It’s about respect, and currently the Big Ten isn’t getting much at all. If the Spartans can walk in to Autzen Stadium on Saturday and pull off the upset, the Big Ten will look a heck of a lot better. This game could determine if the Big Ten gets a representative in the first ever College Football Playoffs. Wisconsin lost to LSU last week, and Ohio State barely escaped Navy, so the Big Ten needs a good showing on Saturday.
The key to the game for the Spartans is keeping Oregon off the board early. Last season, Stanford kept the Oregon offense in check and the Ducks struggled to put up points. That needs to be Michigan State’s goal.
If Michigan State can pull the upset, it will be their 3rd win against a top 5 opponent in their last 5 games (#2 Ohio St, #5 Stanford).
Prediction: Michigan State 31, Oregon 28
Featured image via 247Sports.com