No. 7 Michigan Wolverines vs Penn State Nittany Lions Predictions, Odds, Picks

  • When Michigan has the ball — Can Cade McNamara step up?
  • When Penn State has the ball — Is there any hope of a running game?
  • X-factors to watch

Michigan Wolverines vs Penn State Odds

Odds presented by: DraftKings

Team Spread Money Line Total
Michigan Wolverines +1 (-105)
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+105
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O 48.5 (-110)
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Penn State Nittany Lions -1 (-115)
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-125
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U 48.5 (-110)
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Bet on Michigan Wolverines vs Penn State Here!

Michigan vs Penn State Picks

Penn State has lost three times this season. Its offense has, at times, looked anemic. Yet, the Nittany Lions are favored at home against a top-eight Michigan team. Why is that? Defense. The Wolverines haven’t proven they can take the top off a defense, but Penn State hasn’t shown it can score with any regularity. I’m not sure who wins this game, but I don’t see that many touchdowns in this one. We like the under.

Under 48.5 (-110)

Garcia’s 2021 record: (18-17)

Michigan vs Penn State Prediction Betting Trends to Watch

  • Wolverines are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall
  • Wolverines are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games following a straight up win
  • Wolverines are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games in November
  • Wolverines are 4-9-1 ATS in last 14 road games vs. team with winning home record
  • Over is 8-3 in Wolverines last 11 games on grass
  • Over is 18-4 in Wolverines last 22 road games vs. team with winning home record
  • Nittany Lions are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 conference games
  • Nittany Lions are 10-3 ATS in their last 13 games overall
  • Nittany Lions are 9-3 ATS in last 12 home games vs. team with winning road record
  • Under is 6-1 in Nittany Lions last 7 games in November
  • Under is 4-1 in Nittany Lions last 5 games overall
  • Over is 6-0 in the last 6 head-to-head in Penn State
  • Favorite is 6-1 ATS in their last 7 head-to-head meetings

Michigan vs Penn State Predictions

Can Cade McNamara Rise to the Challenge?

All season long when Michigan has needed big plays, they’ve gone to one of two people. Either Hassan Haskins or Blake Corum. It’s good to have two people you can rely on. It’s not great when they’re both running backs.

This isn’t to slander them — they’ve both been wonderful. Haskins has 165 carries for 829 yards (5 yards per carry) and 11 touchdowns, while Corum has added 130 carries for 778 yards (6 yards per carry) and 10 scores.

But if Michigan is going to win out in November and keep its faint hopes of a Big Ten championship aalive, it’s going to need to pass the ball too. Cade McNamara has proven he can do that. In the last two games McNamara is 38-of-62 for 551 yards, four touchdowns and just one interception.

Many of those yards are against a good Michigan State team (but not a good pass defense). He needs to prove he can do it against a unit like Penn State that has held so many offenses below their average output.

Again, this isn’t to say the run game isn’t going to be a huge factor, but Michigan isn’t going to leave Beaver Stadium with a win if McNamara is anything less than great.

Did the Nittany Lions Find Their Offense in College Park?

All season long, Penn State’s offense has struggled. The NIttany Lions have lost three of their past four, so there’s no doubt they’re disappointed in the season, but if they found their offense this past week then they can ruin some seasons as the 2021 campaign comes to a close.

Sean Clifford had one of the best games of his career, heaving success all day long through the air against an undermanned Maryland team. The senior signal-caller went 27-of-47 for 363 yards and three touchdowns.

Almost all of the damage was done by star receiver Jahan Dotson. Dotson caught 11 passes for 242 yards and three touchdowns in one of the best performances by any receiver all season.

It should be noted they still couldn’t run the ball — Keyvone Lee led the team and he had just 50 yards on eight carries. If that doesn’t change, forget about even having a chance of moving the ball against this Wolverines front.

Speaking of that defense, they can win the game by themselves. Aidan Hutchinson has been on a mission for months, David Ojabo has been one of the breakout players in the conference and Daxton Hill is one of the best secondary players in the NCAA so this won’t be an easy task for James Franklin’s squad.

X-factors to Watch

For Michigan, the x-factor has to be someone stepping up in the passing game. Ever since the Wolverines lost star Ronnie Bell, they’ve been searching for someone to step up as a receiver.

Cornelius Johnson has been the most consistent, Andrel Anthony just had a breakout game and Erick All has been Mr. Reliable. We will label all three of them as x-factors, in the sense that Michigan’s passing game could very well be the determining factor.

On the flip side, for Penn State, we will look at the kicker, senior Jordan Stout. Stout has been inconsistent this year, going 13-of-18 (72.7 percent) including just 5-of-9 on those form 40 yards and farther. PSU doesn’t want to settle for field goals in this one, but it certainly can’t leave points on the board.

Stout’s final line will tell us a lot about this game.

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How to Watch Wolverines vs Nittany Lions

No. 7 Michigan Wolverines at Penn State Nittany Lions Information
Teams No. 7 Michigan Wolverines at Penn State Nittany Lions
Location Beaver Stadium, State College, Pennsylvania
Time Saturday, Nov. 13, 12:00 p.m. EST
How to watch ABC

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Tony Garcia

Expert on Baseball

Tony writes about baseball for WSN.com after recently graduating with his Masters from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. Prior to that, Tony was a local sports reporter for MLive Media Group, based out of Jackson, Michigan where he covered everything from high school to professional sports. He graduated from Michigan State in 2015 with a degree in journalism. During his time there he covered the Michigan State football and men’s basketball teams from 2013-15 and hosted a sports radio show on WDBM 89FM.