ESPN's FPI predicts outcome of Rutgers-Michigan State season opener
Michigan State and Rutgers will face off to start the season in a showdown of coaches making debuts, though one of those debuts is a bit more unique than the other.
For the Spartans, new head coach Mel Tucker will be making his Spartan head coaching debut after replacing Mark Dantonio this offseason. Tucker arrived in East Lansing after just one season as the head coach at Colorado.
For the Scarlet Knights, Greg Schiano will be making his first head coaching start since returning to Rutgers. After a string of disappointing years, Rutgers lured Schiano back to the program that he helped build into consistency from 2001-11.
All things considered, it is an intriguing matchup to open the season for both teams with both head coaches still trying to get settled with their new jobs during a pandemic. Michigan State will be favored entering the game, though ESPN’s FPI has the matchup a bit closer than some may expect.
According to the FPI, Michigan State is given a 60.1% chance of taking down Rutgers. The change at head coach and breaking in a new quarterback are likely some of the reasons that the Spartans are not favored by a higher margin.
Will Schiano start his second tenure with an upset, or will Tucker start his time leading the Spartans with a win? Saturday’s kickoff is set for 12 pm EST on BTN.