Air Force – Michigan State Football Pick

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Air Force

vs.

Michigan State

College Football

Pick – Analysis

9/19/15

Michigan State looked impressive in its win over Oregon on Saturday and now has the No. 4 ranking to show for it. However, the season doesn’t end there. The Spartans host a viable Air Force squad that finished with 10 wins last season. No matter, MSU is still a -26.5 point home favorite against the Falcons.  That line comes from 5 Dimes on Monday, but could change, pending the status of Air Force’s starting quarterback Nate Romine.

Romine picked up a knee injury toward the end of Air Force’s last Game, a 37-16 win over San Jose State. The news is sparse on Romine, but one of the significant notes is that the Falcons listed three quarterbacks on their depth chart for this Game, something they haven’t done yet. The injury didn’t look great, but even without any news updates, it’s looking like Air Force will be without Romine.

If that’s the case, Air Force will likely start senior Karson Roberts at quarterback. He lost the starting competition to Romine mainly because he couldn’t throw it as well, which will be a problem in this Game. But no matter who starts here, Air Force is a huge underdog for a reason. This doesn’t point to being a good matchup for them.

There is a chance their triple-option has some success against the Spartans, but those may be tall odds. Michigan State has one of the best defensive lines in the country and that showed in its most recent win against Oregon, ultimately containing the Ducks’ high-powered rushing Game. In the triple-option, the Falcons have rushed for 822 yards this year, but Romine is just 7-of-18 for 143 yards passing. If the Spartans can contain Air Force’s triple-option, how will they score? That’s a good question.

On the other end, the Falcons have a mostly new defense from last year’s unit. Even though they’ve had some success in their first couple Games, they haven’t even gone on the road yet or faced anyone of the caliber of Michigan State.

The Spartans will likely do what they want rushing the ball behind a dominant offensive line. They destroyed the Ducks last Game, with Madre London going for 103 yards and true freshman LJ SCott rushing for 76 yards and two touchdowns. And still, that doesn’t even include Connor Cook at quarterback, who is considered one of the best pure passers in college football.

No matter who is at quarterback for Air Force, it’s likely going to be a long day for the Falcons. They’ll need to find success running the ball, or this Game could get away from them quite easily. As long as the Spartans still aren’t riding too big of a high from their Oregon win, this should be a win without any problems. Their defense had issues against Western Michigan in Week 1, but that offense also has the ability to pass the ball, something Air Force really struggles to do.

Our Pick – This is a BIG number for sure and laying 26.5 points just isn’t something we’ll do in the real world. If Air Force has success on the ground, they can certainly shorten this Game and stay within the spot.

But the last time Air Force made this kind of a step up in class was 2013 when they played Notre Dame. Final Scorewas 45-10 in favor of the Irish. With that in mind, Michigan State -26.5.

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