Fans across the B1G were in shock on Friday night when they saw the final score from Michigan State’s season opening win over Utah State. The 38-31 victory was pretty slim considering the hype surrounding the Spartans entering the season.

Yes, Michigan State got the win and, in the end, that’s really all that matters. But a scare so early in the season against a Group of 5 opponent? That’s cause for concern, right?

Well, maybe not.

According to, season-opening struggles is nothing new for Michigan State in the Mark Dantonio era. In fact, the Spartans are just 4-7 in covering the spread in Week 1 games since Dantonio took over. There was no spread available for the 2009 season opener against Montana State.

Michigan State’s win-loss record in those games? 11-1.

The Spartans were 23.5-point favorites in Friday night’s opener against Utah State, coming up well short of covering that spread. They were also without starting offensive lineman Cole Chewins and star defensive back Josiah Scott, which would’ve helped the Spartans in the depth and talent departments.

Was Friday night’s game a little scarier than usual? Maybe so. But it certainly wasn’t out of the ordinary.

No. 11 Michigan State will be back in action on Saturday night, traveling to Arizona State.