Michigan State is ranked No. 18 in the AP Poll Top 25 and is now 6-1. The Spartans remain undefeated in Big Ten play. Though Indiana is 3-4, the Hoosiers are 0-4 against Big Ten competition.
In last year’s game, Indiana upset a ranked Spartans team in overtime.
Michigan State-Indiana football score, live updates
Michigan State 17, Indiana 9 (FINAL): After Indiana allowed LJ Scott score so it could get the ball back, the Spartans defense quickly makes a game-clinching stop to secure the win.
Michigan State 10, Indiana 9 (Q4, 5:04): Michigan State’s defense held. Rinse and repeat. The Spartans got the ball back late looking to ice the game.
Michigan State 10, Indiana 9 (Q4, 5:59): When the Spartans needed it most, their offense made big plays. Brian Lewerke hit Cody White on fourth down. A jet sweep to a reverse went for 16 yards. And Felton Davis found himself wide open for a 10-yard touchdown.
Indiana 9, Michigan State 3 (Q4, 9:07): Michigan State’s defense did what it did all game and stuffed Indiana. The Hoosiers had to punt it back. Thanks to multiple Indiana penalties, they had to punt from deep, and Michigan State took over from its own 45-yard line.
Indiana 9, Michigan State 3 (Q4, 10:35): Michigan State got a first down via a pass interference penalty, but that was it. The Spartans had to punt it away once again.
Indiana 9, Michigan State 3 (Q4, 12:29): A tired Michigan State defense did all it could and kept the Hoosiers out of the end zone once again, ensuring the Spartans would have a chance to grab the lead with a touchdown. Griffin Oakes hit from 20 yards out.
Indiana 6, Michigan State 3 (Q3, 2:06): Michigan State finally got something going thanks in large part to Cody White, who finished the drive at 4 catches for 49 yards. But the Spartans offense stalled and a fourth-down pass from Brian Lewerke was significantly overthrown. The Spartans averaged 3.2 yards per play at this point.
Indiana 6, Michigan State 3 (Q3, 5:31): Michigan State will argue that this drive should have stopped just after it started, but a first down spot stood and the Hoosiers marched down the field. The Spartans eventually held, but not far enough back to keep Griffin Oakes from nailing a 44-yard field goal.
Michigan State 3, Indiana 3 (Q3, 9:59): Three possessions in, Michigan State had the lone first down by either team. After that first down, the Spartans ran their predictable jet sweep to Darrell Stewart, who was dropped for a loss. Michigan State would punt it away again.
Michigan State 3, Indiana 3 (Q3, 14:08): More of the same from Michigan State. Felton Davis dropped what should have been an easy first-down grab, and Darrell Stewart didn’t even see the ball on third down as it whizzed past his ear.
Michigan State 3, Indiana 3 (Q2, 0:00): A fumble by Indiana’s Simmie Cobbs eventually recovered by the Hoosiers gave us the merciful end to a dreadful half by both offenses.
You amaze us on a weekly basis, @JoeBach35.
— Michigan St. on BTN (@MichiganStOnBTN) October 21, 2017
It was a pretty even half. Indiana had a 119-115 edge in total offense, leading in passing yards while the Spartans led in rushing. If not for the Madre London fumble, Michigan State might have been leading this game at the half. That’s how well the defense performed.
Michigan State 3, Indiana 3 (Q2, 1:34): After another big stand from the defense, Cody White again fielded a punt inside the 10-yard line. This made a late drive a much tougher task for the Spartans.
Michigan State 3, Indiana 3 (Q2, 4:07): The Michigan State defense continued to stand firm, dropping the Hoosiers to 1-of-7 on third downs. Cody White likely should have let the punt go by as he was inside the 10-yard line, but like Connor Heyward did against Minnesota, White decided to field it. The Spartans took over at their own 8.
Michigan State 3, Indiana 3 (Q2, 6:46): Michigan State drove downfield and got itself inside the 10-yard line, only to see another drive sputter. A trick play in which true freshman running back (and occasional high school quarterback) Connor Heyward tried to throw to Brian Lewerke failed, and the Spartans had to punt.
Indiana 3, Michigan State 0 (Q2, 11:39): Michigan State freshman tight end Matt Dotson and Indiana cornerback Rashard Fant both stayed down for a while and eventually walked off on their own after a brutal collision.
Indiana 3, Michigan State 0 (Q2, 11:45): To this point, Indiana hadn’t put together a drive of more than five plays. The Michigan State defense, as it did against Iowa and Michigan, kept the Spartans in the game while the offense floundered.
Indiana 3, Michigan State 0 (Q2, 12:40): Once again, Michigan State hurt itself. A high snap went over Brian Lewerke’s head, and he ran out of bounds instead of throwing it away, leading to a loss of 19 yards. The Spartans eventually punted into the end zone.
Indiana 3, Michigan State 0 (Q1, 0:26): The Michigan State defense held once again, but it couldn’t stop Indiana from connecting on a field goal. This one was on the offense.
Michigan State 0, Indiana 0 (Q1, 1:40): After Michigan State got the ball back, Madre London quickly fumbled, and Indiana recovered. That gave the Hoosiers their first red-zone opportunity of the game.
Michigan State 0, Indiana 0 (Q1, 4:42): Jake Hartbarger did it again. He pinned Indiana at its own 7 after the Spartans once again failed to get their offense rolling. If not for penalties from the Hoosiers, Michigan State likely would’ve punted deep in its own territory.
Oh, and LJ Scott played in the Spartans’ second drive of the game coming off an arrest on Wednesday. He put down a crushing block a few plays in.
Advice: Watch LJ Scott at the bottom of the video, and enjoy the decleater. pic.twitter.com/XRnETY0Ozp
— Brent Yarina (@BTNBrentYarina) October 21, 2017
Michigan State 0, Indiana 0 (Q1, 8:27): Neither team could get anything going. Michigan State nearly took Hoosiers running back Morgan Ellison down in the end zone, but the road team responded with a 29-yard toss before its drive stalled. The Spartans would get the ball back again off a punt.
Michigan State 0, Indiana 0 (Q1, 10:17): Jake Hartbarger put Michigan State in great position once again, launching a career-long 62-yard punt on the Indiana 1-yard line.
Michigan State 0, Indiana 0 (Q1, 15:00): Michigan State and Indiana kicked off on ESPNews while Texas-Oklahoma State finished up.
Michigan State-Indiana pregame updates
Michigan State will wear its green helmets, green jerseys and white pants for this homecoming game. Watch some of the special teams players break their huddle below.
— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) October 21, 2017
Coach Mark Dantonio addressed LJ Scott’s playing time on his pregame radio show. Scott was arrested Wednesday for driving with a suspended license, but he dressed to play against Indiana.
Dantonio on LJ Scott: “All matters have been resolved. We may restrict his playing time, but he will remain a member of this football team.”
— Chris Solari (@chrissolari) October 21, 2017
Linebacker Shane Jones did not dress for Michigan State on Saturday, but the Spartans did get right guard David Beedle back and dressed. Wide receiver Trishton Jackson was expected to return from injury as well. Offensive tackle AJ Arcuri remained off the list.
Michigan State-Indiana football preview, picks
No. 18 Michigan State (5-1, 3-0 Big Ten) will have a home game for the first time since September, and it comes on homecoming weekend. The Spartans will look to take down Indiana (3-3, 0-3) for their all-important sixth win and bowl eligibility.
Coach Mark Dantonio’s team enters this matchup with a three-game winning streak, having beaten Iowa, Michigan and Minnesota to open the Big Ten slate. They haven’t been comfortable wins, though, as the latter two have come in the rain and none has been by double digits.
In its 30-27 win over the Golden Gophers last Saturday, LJ Scott became Michigan State’s first 100-yard rusher of the season by going off for 194 yards and a pair of touchdowns. In doing so, he passed quarterback Brian Lewerke to become the team’s leading rusher, though Scott missed the Michigan game with shoulder problems.
Conversely, Indiana and coach Tom Allen have yet to enter the win column in conference play. Michigan State will make it four straight ranked Big Ten opponents for the Hoosiers, who have already lost to No. 6 Ohio State, No. 2 Penn State and No. 19 Michigan. And on Nov. 4, they’ll face No. 5 Wisconsin. If there’s ever a time to have empathy for the opponent, this might be it.
And there’s more at stake on Saturday than just a victory: The winner of this game will be awarded the Old Brass Spittoon, which has been presented since 1950. Michigan State leads the series 45-13-1, but Indiana took it in 2016 with a 24-21 overtime win for which the Spartans will be seeking revenge.
Michigan State must prepare for two quarterbacks in Peyton Ramsey and Richard Lagow, both of whom have more than 100 passing attempts this season. They have 11 touchdowns through the air and 7 interceptions between them.
“I think they’re different,” Dantonio said Tuesday. “It seems like they’ve gone in that direction with Peyton right now. But I think Lagow is a very good quarterback as well, can put the ball up. So you have to prepare for either/or. You also have to have a mindset of, ‘Okay, this guy is going to play, and this is the direction we’re going to take most of our preparation.’ ”
It appears Ramsey will get the bulk of the Spartans’ attention, as will true freshman Morgan Ellison at running back. Michigan State recruited Ellison and has commitments from two of his former Pickerington (Ohio) Central teammates, but never offered. Ellison has rushed for 426 yards and 3 touchdowns on the season.
Indiana will give Michigan State an opportunity to get back on track in the turnover margin. The Hoosiers sit at the bottom of the Big Ten with a paltry minus-9 margin, mainly because they have mustered only four takeaways. If the Spartans can move the ball without losing it, they’ll be in good shape. But that has been a challenge all season for Michigan State.
Additionally, this game offers the Spartans an opportunity to finish drives with points, something they have struggled to do. They enter Saturday with the No. 11 red-zone offense in the Big Ten and will be going against the No. 13 red-zone defense. Something’s got to give.
The game ultimately might come down to special teams. Michigan State fields one of the nation’s best punters in Jake Hartbarger, and he’ll be kicking to one of the best punt returners in college football, J-Shun Harris. Harris has averaged 23.3 yards per return and has taken two punts back for touchdowns. Michigan State can’t afford to give up quick and easy points on special teams to Harris.
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