A 49-37 loss to Ohio State over the weekend halted Michigan State's rise in the College Football Playoff rankings, but the season is far from over for the 12th-ranked Spartans, who visit Maryland in Big Ten play this Saturday night. Jeremy Langford put together another rock-solid performance for Michigan State with 137 yards on the ground and three TDs — his third straight game with at least three three scores and sixth consecutive with more than 100 yards rushing. Despite the big day from Langford and a season-high 358 passing yards from Connor Cook, the Spartans weren't able to contain Buckeyes QB J.T. Barrett, who paved the way with five scores (three passing TDs, two rushing TDs).
Michigan State will get hardly the same stat line from Maryland QB C.J. Brown, but the sixth-year senior does present some problems as a dual-threat passer — Brown is one of 12 active FBS players to pass for 4,000 or more yards and rush for 1,000 or more yards in a career. The Terrapins are coming off a bye week after securing their first-ever win at Penn State two weeks ago in a come-from-behind effort that ended on a last-minute field goal by Brad Craddock, who remains perfect in 14 attempts this season. Maryland achieved bowl eligibility for the second year in a row under coach Randy Edsall, who called the 20-19 victory in University Park the biggest he has had in four seasons with the program.
TV: 8 p.m. ET, Big Ten Network. LINE: Michigan State -12.
ABOUT MICHIGAN STATE (7-2, 4-1 Big Ten): The Spartans, who dropped from eighth to 12th in the playoff rankings, currently own an eight-game winning streak in conference road games dating to 2012 under coach Mark Dantonio. With 52 offensive TDs this season, Michigan State is two shy of a school record and rank sixth in scoring with 44.6 points a game. Tony Lippett, who leads the conference in receiving yards (953), had his streak of games with 100 or more yards snapped at four against the Buckeyes.
ABOUT MARYLAND (6-3, 3-2 Big Ten): The Terrapins have won a conference-best four road games this season, which is the most by a Maryland team since 2002. The defense added four more takeaways in the win over Penn State, bringing its season total to 18 on the season — fourth-best in the Big Ten. In addition to takeaways, Maryland's defense has been efficient in getting pressure on the quarterback with 26 sacks to date, including five on Nittany Lions QB Christian Hackenberg.
1. Fifth-year DE Marcus Rush can break Michigan State's all-time starts record with his 50th start Saturday.
2. Maryland and Michigan State are meeting for the first time since 1950, and the Spartans lead the series 4-1.
3. Terrapins leading WR Stefon Diggs, who was slated to serve a one-game suspension for his role in a pregame skirmish with Penn State, suffered a lacerated kidney in that Nov. 1 matchup and could be out until the end of the regular season.
PREDICTION: Michigan State 38, Maryland 26