Michigan State vs Ohio State Picks and Predictions: This Year's Premier Big Ten Matchup

Not two weeks ago, the Spartans were making a great case for a Playoff spot - now they're near three-touchdown underdogs against Ohio State. Our preview suggests that's simply too many points - read more in our Michigan State vs. Ohio State picks.

Last Updated: Nov 19, 2021 6:11 PM ET Read Time: 4 min
Kenneth Walker III Michigan State Spartans college football
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

One of the more highly anticipated matchups for Week 12 in college football features two Top 10 ranked teams going head-to-head: the Michigan State Spartans and the Ohio State Buckeyes.

Ohio State is back in the top four of the College Football Playoff rankings with eight straight wins since losing to Oregon earlier in the year. On the other hand, Michigan State was in a prime position to steal a spot in the Playoff until a loss to Purdue derailed that idea. 

If Michigan State wants a chance at the College Football Playoff along with a shot at the Big Ten Championship, a win over Ohio State, on the road is a necessity. Do the Spartans have it in them?

Here are our picks and predictions for a premier Big Ten matchup between Michigan State and Ohio State. 

Michigan State vs Ohio State odds

Odds via the Covers Line, an average comprised of odds from multiple sportsbooks.

Ohio State opened way earlier in the season as a 27-point favorite. However, you can now find the Spartans as a 19-point underdog and as low as 18.5. 

The total has moved from 68 to 66.5 at some outlets. Use the live odds widget above to track any future line movements right up until kickoff and be sure to check out the full college football odds before placing your bets.

Michigan State vs Ohio State predictions

Predictions made on 11/16/2021 at 7:00 p.m. ET.
Click on each prediction to jump to the full analysis.

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Michigan State vs Ohio State game info

Location: Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH
Date: Saturday, November 20, 2021
Time: 12:00 p.m. ET

Michigan State vs Ohio State betting preview


Be sure to monitor the gametime conditions with our NCAA football weather info.

Key injuries

Michigan State: Michigan State: Jack Camper DE (Out), Matt Carrick G (Questionable), Trenton Gillison TE (Questionable), Jalen Nailor WR (Questionable), Jarrett Horst T (Questionable), Ian Stewart WR (Questionable).
Ohio State: Kamryn Babb WR (Questionable), Marcus Crowley RB (Questionable), Jakailin Johnson CB (Out), Jaden McKenzie DT (Questionable), Mitchell Melton LB (Out), Gee Scott Jr. TE (Questionable).

Find our latest NCAA football injury reports.

Betting trend to know

Spartans are 5-0-2 ATS in their last seven games after allowing more than 450 total yards in their previous game. Find more NCAA betting trends for Michigan State vs. Ohio State.

Michigan State vs Ohio State picks and predictions

Our predictions are compiled from the analysis of the spread and total and are indications of where we are leaning for this game.
Our best bet is the play that we like the most for this game, which we would actually put some of our bankroll behind.

Michigan State has lost just one game all year playing the exact competition as Ohio State. Yet, Ohio State is nearly a three-touchdown favorite, at home against Michigan State. 

At first glance, it just seems like way too many points. Michigan State is averaging just under 450 yards on offense and while the defense has allowed nearly 450 itself, they’ve still got plenty of potential and playmakers on the defensive end, including a defensive line that has stepped up countless times. 

The coverage is starting to break a bit and the tackling has been a bit off for Michigan State, but overall, the defense does a lot of great things.

Offensively, the Spartans are led by Payton Thorne who has thrown for 21 touchdowns along with eight interceptions. However, the big name and potential Heisman candidate, Kenneth Walker III has made the most of his new opportunity with Michigan State, totalling 17 touchdowns with 1,473 yards on 227 attempts this season. The running game has been fantastic and could be a factor against Ohio State. 

The Buckeyes, on the other hand, have lacked in coverage more so than Michigan State has this season. Tackling hasn’t been as big of a problem for Ohio State but it’s still a little of a struggle this season. 

Ohio State also has one of the top Heisman candidates in C.J. Stroud, who has thrown for 30 touchdowns on the season with just five interceptions. And that’s with missing some action due to injury earlier in the season. 

Stroud has a ridiculous number of playmakers around him and they make his job extremely easy. However, Michigan State will stick around in this game offensively as well and keep this within reach. 

Prediction: Michigan State +19.5 (-110)

Both of these defenses are terrific, but these offenses are even better. Michigan State has one of the best running games in the nation behind Heisman hopeful Kenneth Walker III and Ohio State has developed C.J. Stroud into a premier quarterback in college football.

With the caliber of these two offenses, 67 seems like a low number. If each team scores five touchdowns, this game goes Over, and I think that’s likely for two teams that literally average five or more touchdowns per game. 

Prediction: Over 67 (-110)

Michigan State was a College Football Playoff contender just a couple of weeks ago. Now they’re 19-point underdogs in the biggest game of the season. Not only will this game help Michigan State in the College Football Playoff rankings, but this is a huge game for the Big Ten, straight up.

Ohio State is undefeated in conference play while Michigan State has one loss. A win against Ohio State would leave the two teams tied in first place with another game to play before the Big Ten Tournament game. 

Back Michigan State to stick around. 

Pick: Michigan State +19.5 (-110)

College football parlays

Did you know that if you parlayed our Michigan State vs. Ohio State picks, you could win $26.45 on a $10 bet?

Use our college football parlay calculator to create your own parlays and see their potential payouts.

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