State News reporters predict MSU victory against Iowa
Iowa City, Iowa — With MSU set to kick off its Big Ten schedule at Iowa today at noon, State News football reporters Stephen Brooks and Dillon Davis offer predictions on the matchup.
Stephen: With clouds in the sky and rain in the forecast, this one should live up to the hard-nosed, physical billing of past clashes between these two. It’s a typical Big Ten Saturday here at Kinnick Stadium and I think MSU has a slight edge coming off a bye week. The Spartans were impressive in a road loss to Notre Dame two weeks ago, and if they can show some improvement from the open week, I like their odds. It will be tough to move the ball against Iowa’s No. 7-ranked defense, but I say MSU makes a long-awaited big play late to steal this one in Iowa City, Iowa. Given the Spartans’ tendency to bottom out offensively, I’m giving them one more vote of confidence to figure it out and set a positive tone for the conference slate.
Prediction: MSU 20, Iowa 17
Dillon: On offense, the Hawkeyes are well established at a few positions that have been question marks for the Spartans this season. Quarterback Jake Rudock has thrown for six touchdowns and four interceptions to go along with close to 1,000 yards passing this season, while running back Mark Weisman has been a steady option in the backfield. However, Iowa has yet to take on a defense of MSU’s caliber — the closest being Minnesota, who has the nation’s 62nd defense — and they won’t have that type of success against the Spartans. Sophomore quarterback Connor Cook needs to be steady while the wide receiving corps need to take advantage of the opportunities presented to them. If the Spartans can have any sort of consistency on offense, I really like their chances today.
Prediction: MSU 24, Iowa 17