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Minnesota Football: Three keys to beating Michigan State and how to watch the Gopher game

Gophers are in East Lansing. Here are your 3 keys to a win and how to watch the game

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NCAA Football: New Mexico State at Minnesota Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

The first road game and the first Big Ten game! Can the Gophers go to East Lansing and remain undefeated?

How to Watch

Time: 2:30


  • Get into a passing groove - Michigan State’s secondary is developing a reputation for being not very good. I know we lost Autman-Bell, but this is time for the passing game to find a bunch of openings.
  • No penalties - Neither team tends to get called for very many penalties, but don’t give any help for the first road game of the season.
  • Stop the run - Jalen Berger had just 27 yards in the Spartan’s loss to Washington. Taking away the run made MSU one-dimensional. They threw for a lot of yards but that was primarily due to being down by 21 at halftime.


  • #10 QB - Payton Thorne - Was not great against Akron but put up impressive numbers at Washington, mostly due to a lot of attempts. But he he completes over 70% of his passes against the Gophers, things may get dicey.
  • #4 OLB/DE - Jacoby Windmon - A potential late-round draft pick, Windmon already has 5.5 sacks this year. He will be this OL’s best test of the season.


The caliber of opponent will be very different than the first three games. But despite Michigan State being ranked, they have not been all that impressive this year. The Gopher offensive line against the Spartan front 7 will be really interesting.

My prediction for Saturday is that Kirk Ciarrocca will use the pass to open up the run game. Watch for the ball to be spread around to Brevyn Spann-Ford, Michael-Brown Stephens, Daniel Jackson and Dylan Wright. A lof of short and intermediate passes to then open up the ground game.

Gophers get up early, grind out a win.

Minnesota - 31
Michigan State - 20