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Free Football Picks for Sept. 30: Iowa, Spartans Clash

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Thank you for visiting Oskeim Sports’ Blog where you can find free football picks, quality betting advice and sports picks in every major sport.  Please find below one of Oskeim’s free football bets on the Iowa/Michigan State game.

The misleading final scores from last week’s games provide us with excellent line value on the Spartans. Iowa arrives in town off a heart-breaking 21-19 loss to Penn State that was decided on the final play of the game (Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley connected with Juwan Johnson for the game-winning touchdown as time expired).

Despite losing by just two points, Iowa was actually dominated from the line of scrimmage by the Nittany Lions. Indeed, the Hawkeyes were outgained by over 300 total yards in last week’s deceiving loss.

Meanwhile, Michigan State is home for the fourth consecutive week and is coming off a 38-18 loss to Notre Dame. Despite losing by twenty points, the Spartans actually outgained Notre Dame by 141 total yards but lost due to three turnovers and an uncharacteristically-high number of penalties.

Due to last week’s disparate results, the betting public is falling over themselves to grab the points with what they believe is the better team. However, a cursory review of the game’s respective box scores indicates that Michigan State had the much better performance despite suffering a double-digit loss.

Iowa is 0.6 yards per play better than average offensively (5.5 yards per play against teams that would combine to allow 4.9 yards per play) and 0.8 yards per play better than average defensively (5.5 yards per play to teams that would combine to average 6.3 yards per play).

The Hawkeyes now face a stout Michigan State stop unit that is 20.7 points and 254 total yards per game at 4.3 yards per play to teams that would combine to average 5.5 yards per play against a mediocre defense.

Iowa has no chance of moving the ball on the ground against a Spartans’ front seven that is 1.5 yards per rush attempt better than average this season. (Iowa is 0.4 yards per rush play better than average offensively).

The Hawkeyes will also struggle to throw the ball against a Michigan State secondary that is limiting opposing quarterbacks to 5.1 yards per pass attempt with a 46.2% completion rate. The Spartans own the nation’s sixth-best pass efficiency defense and the 44th-ranked rushing defense.

Not surprisingly, Michigan State has committed the 13th-fewest number of penalties this season (head coach Mark Dantonio is one of the nation’s best).

The Spartans should be able to move the chains on the ground against an Iowa defense that is allowing 4.7 yards per rush attempt this season (Michigan State is averaging 221 rushing yards per game at 5.2 yards per rush attempt).

From a technical standpoint, 2-1 college football home teams off a loss in the 4th game of a four-game season-opening home stand are 5-0-1 ATS as favorites of 3+ points since 1980.

Let’s also note that Michigan State is 5-1 ATS in its last six home games, whereas the Hawkeyes are just 2-5 ATS in their last seven games following a loss and 5-12-1 ATS after accumulating less than 275 total yards in their previous game.

Lay the number with Michigan State as one of Oskeim Sports’ free football picks for Saturday, September 30.

Oskeim Sports’ Free Football Picks:

  • Michigan State (-4) 
  • Southern Mississippi (-8)
  • Boston College (-9)
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