Road Warriors

In Mark Dantonio’s first season as Michigan State’s head coach in 2007, his unranked underdog Spartans gave then No. 1 Ohio State their first real test of the season. The Buckeyes survived that scare in Columbus 24-17. But that game ten years ago was the last time OSU actually beat Michigan State in Columbus, with Dantonio going 2-0 in the Horseshoe since.

Since Meyer’s arrival in 2012, the Michigan State game has become a rivalry marked by road team dominance and upsets. In the Meyer-Dantonio era, the home team is a whopping 0-4, the favorite has never covered the spread, and only once has the favorite actually won outright (that was last year when a Buckeye team favored by 21 won by a single point 17-16). But Las Vegas doesn’t really care about series history (and may not have even watched any football last weekend, to be honest). The Buckeyes stand as a more than two touchdown favorite headed into Saturday. But after OSU fell apart against Iowa and Sparty downed Penn State last weekend, that’s a line that  — if recent history is any indicator  — is unlikely to hold.

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Photo: Sam Howzit

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