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College Football Betting Preview: Central Michigan Chippewas vs. Michigan State Spartans

September 1, 2023


The Central Michigan Chippewas finished with a losing record for the first time under Jim McElwain finishing with a record of 4-8 which led to the Chippewas not becoming bowl eligible and finishing tied for 4th place in the West Division of the MAC Conference. The coaches of the MAC voted for the Chippewas to finish in 4th place again this season in the West Division during the media days for the MAC conference back in July. 

The Chippewas enter this season with an over/under win total of 5.5 wins which means Central Michigan is projected to be a borderline bowl-eligible team this season and based on Vegas odds is projected to be the 7th best team in the MAC behind the Toledo Rockets, Ohio Bobcats, Miami-Ohio RedHawks, Buffalo Bulls, Eastern Michigan Eagles, and the Northern Illinois Huskies in Jim McElwain’s 5th season as head coach.

Michigan State finished last season with a disappointing record of 5-7 which included a blowout loss against their instate rivals, the Michigan Wolverines, by a score of 7-29. After signing a contract extension after his 2nd season as head coach for the Michigan State Spartans, Mel Tucker may be on the hot seat as the Spartans have faced off-the-field problems last season and a 2nd losing season would not sit well with the boosters or fan base. 

The Spartans enter this season with an over/under win total of 5.5 wins which means they are projected to be a borderline bowl-eligible team this season, however, if they don’t reach the six-win total I would not be surprised to see the Spartans make a change at head coach. Based on Vegas odds, Michigan State is projected to be the 10th-best team in the Big Ten Conference only ahead of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights, Northwestern Wildcats, Indiana Hoosiers, and Purdue Boilermakers.

BookMaker has the Michigan State Spartans listed as 14.5-point favorites at home against the Central Michigan Chippewas on Friday in week 1 of the college football season. Michigan State has dominated the series, winning seven eight games all-time including the previous four matchups in a row while the Chippewas are 5-3 ATS all-time and 2-1 ATS in the last three games. Central Michigan finished last season with a record of 4-7-1 ATS overall, 3-3 ATS on the road, and 3-2 ATS as an underdog while Michigan State finished 3-6-3 ATS overall, 2-4-1 ATS at home, and 1-2-1 ATS as a favorite.

Michigan State is the more talented team entering the season and has been the dominating team in the series, winning seven of the eight games all-time including the previous four matchups in a row. However, Central Michigan has been the better team at covering the spread in the series, going 5-3 ATS all-time and 2-1 ATS in the last three games in the series. Michigan State will get the win, however, I look for Central Michigan to keep the game closer than expected which is why I am buying the .5 point and taking the Central Michigan Chippewas +15 on the road against the Michigan State Spartans on BookMaker for week 1 of the college football season. 

Spooky Express Pick: Central Michigan Chippewas +15

Written By: Daniel Newton