SEC & Big Ten Week 8 Preview: Michigan, Penn State set for Top-25 clash in Beaver Stadium
This Saturday, No. 16 Michigan heads to State College to take on No. 7 Penn State in a Top-25 showdown under the lights at Beaver Stadium. The Wolverines will be looking to win their second game in a row against the Nittany Lions while Penn State looks to improve to 7-0 on the year.
This will be the 23rd overall meeting between these two teams. Michigan leads the series 14-8.
Now let’s take a closer look at the teams:
Michigan Quick Hits:
- As Head Coach of the Wolverines, Jim Harbaugh is 1-1 against the Nittany Lions in Beaver Stadium.
- In the 16 games that Michigan has played against Penn State as a Top 25 team, the Wolverines are 11-5.
- Michigan has been ranked in the Top 25 for 20 consecutive games and is 1-1 against ranked conference opponents this year (win vs. No. 14 Iowa, loss vs No. 13 Wisconsin).
- Michigan has outscored its opponents 76-32 in the second half of games this year and held three opponents scoreless second half (Army, Rutgers and Iowa).
- Click here for Michigan’s complete game notes.
Penn State Quick Hits:
- Penn State’s defense is only allowing 8.2 points per game and has not allowed more than 13 points to an opponent this season.
- This Saturday will mark the third season in a row that Penn State has hosted College GameDay on campus.
- The last time Penn State started 6-0 was in 2017; that year, the Nittany Lions defeated the Wolverines to improve to 7-0 before losing back-to-back contests at Ohio State and at Michigan State.
- Penn State is 294-74 at Beaver Stadium since it opened in 1960.
- Penn State ranks second in the nation in total offense (465.3 yards per game).
- Click here for Penn State’s complete game notes.
- Click here for the Nittany Lions’ Week 8 depth chart.
Here’s a quick look at some of the other top games on this week’s SEC and Big Ten schedule:
No. 4 Ohio State (6-0) at Northwestern (1-4) at 8:30 p.m. (Friday) on BTN
This matchup will a rematch of last year’s Big Ten championship, which the Buckeyes won 45-24. With 174 rushing yards on Friday, Ohio State’s J.K. Dobbins would become the first player in Buckeyes history to have 1,000-yard rushing seasons as a freshman, sophomore and junior.
No. 6 Wisconsin (6-0) at Illinois (2-4) at Noon on BTN
Badgers tailback Jonathan Taylor leads the nation with 18 TDs, and ranks third in rushing (137.5 yards per game). Overall, Taylor is averaging 160.2 yards from scrimmage per game.
Purdue (2-4) at No. 23 Iowa (4-2) at Noon on ESPN2
The Hawkeyes have only allowed seven touchdowns in their first six games. Only two other Big Ten schools have allowed fewer in that time – Penn State (five) and Wisconsin (four).
No. 9 Florida (6-1) at South Carolina (3-3) at Noon on ESPN
The Gamecocks have beaten the Gators in five of the last nine matchups between the two schools after previously just four of their first 30 meetings against Florida.
No. 11 Auburn (5-1) at Arkansas (2-4) at Noon on SECN
The Tigers have won the last three meetings against the Razorbacks by 31, 32 and 53 points, respectively, marking the only time in program history that Auburn has won three straight games against an SEC opponent by at least 30 points.
No. 2 LSU (6-0) at Mississippi State (3-3) at 3:30 p.m. on CBS
LSU leads the nation in scoring with 52.5 points per game. Quarterback Joe Burrow leads the SEC in total offense (377.0), passing yards per game (359.5), passing yards (2,157) and pass efficiency (218.1 rating).
No. 20 Minnesota (6-0) at Rutgers (1-5) at 3:30 p.m. on BTN
Dating back to last season, Minnesota has won eight straight games, tied for the fourth-longest winning streak in the nation behind Clemson (21), Ohio State (12) and Appalachian State (11)
Indiana (4-2) at Maryland (3-3) at 3:30 p.m. on BTN
Maryland has forced at least one turnover in 18 straight contests. Only Mississippi State (22) and Syracuse (20) have longer streaks.
No. 22 Missouri (5-1) at Vanderbilt (1-5) at 4 p.m. on SECN
Mizzou is off to its first 2-0 start in SEC play since starting 3-0 in 2013, on the way to one of two back-to-back SEC Eastern Division titles in 2013 and 2014.
Kentucky (3-3) at No. 10 Georgia (5-1) at 6 p.m. on ESPN
Georgia has won nine straight games over Kentucky, with UK’s last win in the series coming in 2009, when the ‘Cats clawed out of a 20-6 hole to top the ‘Dawgs 34-27 in Athens.
Texas A&M (3-3) at Ole Miss (3-4) at 7:30 p.m. on SECN
Ten of the Aggies’ 23 touchdowns have been scored by true freshmen, with TE Jalen Wydermyer (4), WR Ainias Smith (3) and RB Isaiah Spiller (3) each finding the end zone at least three times.
Tennessee (2-4) at No. 1 Alabama (6-0) at 9 p.m. on ESPN
Alabama has won their last 12 against the Vols, and Nick Saban is 14-1 overall against Tennessee. The Vols are coached by former Alabama defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt, who is 0-1 against his former team.