Who: No. 8 Ohio State (8-1, 5-1 Big Ten) at No. 24 Michigan State (6-3, 4-2)
When: 12 p.m., Saturday
Where: Spartan Stadium, East Lansing, Mich.
Series history: Ohio State leads 31-15, including 16-5 in East Lansing. The Buckeyes have won six in a row at Spartan Stadium.
Last game: Ohio State won 48-3 last season in Columbus. That was an important outcome following a blowout loss at Iowa.
Coaches: Ohio State’s Urban Meyer is 78-9 in six seasons as the coach of the Buckeyes and 182-32 overall in 17 seasons. Mark Dantonio is 106-48 overall in 12 seasons at Michigan State and 124-65 overall in 15 seasons.
Ohio State notes: Sophomore quarterback Dwayne Haskins leads the nation with 32 touchdown passes and is second nationally with 339.2 passing yards per game and fifth in passer efficiency…. Ohio State is No. 5 nationally in total offense (547.2 yards per game) and No. 68 in total defense (397.3)… The Buckeyes are 112th in penalties per game (8.0) and 111th in penalty yards assessed per game (72.6), both slightly better than last week.
Michigan State notes: The Spartans have the No. 1 run defense in the nation (71.7 yards allowed per game)… They are 16th nationally and third in the Big Ten in scoring defense (19.0 points per game)…MSU kicker Matt Coghlin leads the Big Ten and is third nationally in field goal percentage (92.3)… Michigan State has 28 players from Ohio, including eight starters: Cornerback Justin Layne (Cleveland Benedictine), safety Xavier Henderson (Pickerington Central), running back L.J. Scott (Hubbard), kicker Matt Coghlin (Moeller), linebacker Andrew Dowell (Lakewood St. Edward), safety David Dowell (Lakewood St. Edward), cornerback Michael Dowell (Lakewood St. Edward), cornerback Dominique Long (Westerville South), linebacker Chase Kline (Chardon), cornerback Josiah Scott (Fairfield), punter Jake Hartbarger (Anthony Wayne), running back Weston Bridges (Copley), linebacker Edward Warinner (Olentangy Liberty), linebacker Jeslord Boateng (Dublin Coffman), linebacker Joe Bachie (Berea-Midpark), fullback Collin Lucas (Avon Lake), defensive end Zach Slade (Olentangy), offensive lineman Matt Carrick (Perry), offensive tackle Luke Campbell (Olentangy), offensive tackle Noah Listermann (Winton Woods), defensive lineman Jacob Slade (Olentangy), offensive tackle AJ Arcuri (Olentangy Liberty), receiver Javez Alexander (Sandusky), tight end Noah Davis (St. Xavier), tight end Trenton Gillison (Pickerington Central), tight end Matt Dotson (Moeller), defensive tackle DeAri Todd (Lorain Clearview) and defensive end Justice Alexander (Macedonia Nordonia).
Quoted: Dantonio on Ohio State: “Even when I was here before, it was a big game. It was a big game back in the late 90s, It’s always been a big game for Michigan State, and if there’s some natural rivalries in there maybe because we have some people from there, myself included. I think the biggest point of emphasis is that it has meant so much to each program or to this program when we’ve played them there, there’s been a lot on the line in those games.”
Next game: Ohio State plays at Maryland next Saturday. Michigan State will play at Nebraska.
Prediction: Ohio State 23, Michigan State 16