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Michigan State opens as slight favorite over Penn State

The oddsmakers expect a tight ball game...

Michigan State has opened as a one-point favorite in its regular season finale against Penn State this weekend in East Lansing.

The Spartans and Nittany Lions will battle for the Land-Grant Trophy, which has gone to the winner of this rivalry game since 1993, when Penn State joined the Big Ten Conference.

The two programs have met 35 times, with the series tied 17-17-1. Since the trophy was added to the rivalry, the Nittany Lions hold a 16-9 advantage in the matchup.

The rivalry was the brainchild of former Michigan State coach George Perles, who presented the idea to then-Penn State coach Joe Paterno. The two schools are the nation's two oldest land-grant universities, hence the name of the trophy.

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The Spartans enter the contest licking their wounds after a 56-7 loss to Ohio State last week. The Nittany Lions, meanwhile, defeated Rutgers 28-0 in their Week 11 matchup.

Michigan State is going for its tenth win in Mel Tucker's second season in East Lansing, which would be the Spartans first 10-win season since 2017.