If Minnesota and Michigan State were stocks at the moment, they would be trending in completely opposite directions on Wall Street heading into their Big Ten matchup on Saturday afternoon in East Lansing, Mich.
Minnesota comes in trending way up after a 3-0 start to the season, with all three wins being blowouts.
The latest rout for the Golden Gophers was a 49-7 win at home over Colorado last Saturday, as Minnesota has now outscored opponents 149-17.
Minnesota features one of the Big Ten’s best quarterbacks in Tanner Morgan in addition to one of the top running backs in Mohamed Ibrahim, and is rightfully ready and confident heading into its first road game of the season.
“All we can control is ourselves,” Minnesota head coach P.J. Fleck said. “We’re as prepared as we are. We were prepared to be 1-0 in the Colorado season. This week, we’ll do everything we can to play one of the best teams in the Big Ten.”
On the other side, Michigan State’s stock has taken a drastic tumble.
The Spartans (2-1) went from No. 11 to unranked following a 39-28 loss at Washington last week in a game that saw them trail 29-8 at halftime.
Michigan State might have gone 11-2 last season, but two big weaknesses from 2021, offensive line play and pass defense, reared their heads again in Washington.
Ranked last in the country in passing yards allowed per game in 2021, Michigan State saw Washington quarterback Michael Penix Jr. throw for 397 yards and four touchdowns.
Offensively, Michigan State struggled to block, with its leading rusher for the game, Jalen Berger, rushing for 27 yards on 13 carries.
The Spartans had to fly back from the West Coast early Sunday morning and now have a shorter turnaround than normal to prepare for a red-hot opponent.
“We’re going to learn a lot from it,” Michigan State head coach Mel Tucker said. “We’re going to show up (Monday) ready to work and we’re going to have a better football team next week.”