Michigan Football: 3 Reasons Wolverines will beat Spartans

Syndication: Detroit Free Press
Syndication: Detroit Free Press /
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Syndication: Detroit Free Press
Syndication: Detroit Free Press /

2. Advantage in the Trenches

The Michigan Wolverines rank first in the country in tackles for loss allowed and are tied for first in the nation in sacks allowed.

Granted, Michigan State’s strength of their defense is their stout defensive line. However, Washington, Wisconsin, and Nebraska all had comparable defensive lines and the Wolverines still exerted their will on the ground.

On the other side of the ball, while they don’t have a true identity, the Spartans do want to run the ball. As evidenced by Heisman trophy candidate Kenneth Walker III with his 997 rushing yards he will be a force to stop.

But outside of Walker — who ranks 2nd in the country in rushing yardage — the Spartans don’t have anyone else on the ground.

In fact, they rank 32nd nationally in rushing yardage. While that might seem great and all, the disparity in those two stats is startling. Meaning that while they are a decent unit, it tells more about Walker’s talent than any ability to block on an elite level. If the Spartans had an elite offensive line, then the rest of their run game would follow suit.

Led by their elite defensive line featuring future first-round NFL pick Aidan Hutchinson, the Wolverines’ advantage in the trenches is substantial. And it’s the second reason why they will win on Saturday.