Penn State vs. Michigan State highlights Rivalry Weekend around the B1G with the Land-Grant Trophy back up for grabs! Saturday’s kickoff is set for 4 p.m. ET on FS1.

Penn State vs. Michigan preview

Penn State and Michigan State are two teams heading in opposite directions in 2022. Though the Nittany Lions lost their two biggest games of the year, James Franklin’s squad has won every game it was supposed to this year.

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As a result, Penn State has a shot at 10 wins in the regular season. And with a win, the Nittany Lions have a very real shot at a New Year’s Six Bowl in the postseason.

For fans looking for a reason for Penn State’s resurgence this season, look no further than a renewed ground game. Spearheaded by true freshmen Nick Singleton and Kaytron Allen, the Nittany Lions have been explosive and electric running the ball.

While Singleton leads the team with 863 rushing yards, both freshmen have rushed for more than 740 yards and have combined for 19 rushing touchdowns this season. In the win over Rutgers, Allen led the way with 117 rushing yards while Singleton produced a 100-yard kickoff return touchdown.

Quarterback Sean Clifford has also been effective this season. Clifford is completing 62.4% of his passes for 18 touchdowns and 7 interceptions.

As for Michigan State, the Nittany Lions present a terrible head-to-head match for the Spartans, particularly on the defensive side of the ball. Penn State is averaging just over 184 rushing yards per game while the Spartans are giving up 180 yards on the ground. That could put Mel Tucker’s squad on the wrong end of a long day in Week 13.

Michigan State has struggled defensively throughout 2022 and is giving up 26.7 points per game on the year. The Spartans are also shorthanded due to injuries and suspensions from the brawl following the Michigan game, an issue Tucker claims has forced the team to avoid full-contact practices over the past month.

Offensively, Michigan State’s best hopes have hinged on the deep-play abilities of QB Payton Thorne working with Keon Coleman and Jayden Reed. Those two players have accounted for 12 of Thorne’s 18 total touchdown passes.

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On the ground, Tucker’s squad is led by former Wisconsin badger Jalen Berger with 669 rushing yards. Unfortunately, it has been tough to replicate the success Michigan State had with Kenneth Walker III in the backfield, averaging a little over 120 rushing yards per game.

Penn State vs. Michigan State prediction

With a bowl game on the line for the Spartans — and for a program that clearly could use the development of extra practices — do not expect Michigan State to simply roll over. But in the end, the feelings of the Spartans are unlikely to make much of a difference in Week 13.

Look for Penn State to try for a hot start in Beaver Stadium while riding the ground game behind Singleton and Allen.

Prediction: Penn State 34, Michigan State 17