Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across the NCAA. Throughout the year, we ask questions of the most plugged-in Michigan State Spartans fans and fans across the country. Sign up here to participate.
This is what rock bottom feels like. After the embarrassing loss to Michigan and reprehensible actions after the game, MSU needs to find a way to turn its attention to a daunting Illinois game.
The Fighting Illini may be the biggest surprise not only in the Big Ten, but across the country. Illinois is the only ranked team in the Big Ten West and at No. 16 in the College Football Playoff rankings, the Illini are within shouting distance of the best teams in the nation. Illinois has earned that spot with some old-fashioned Big Ten play — dominant defense and an elite running game.
Of course, the big qualifier on the Illinois season is its play in the Big Ten West. The lone loss on the season came against Indiana of all teams, and outside of a strong running game with Chase Brown, there isn’t much on the offense to speak highly of.
Because of its style of play, Illinois hasn’t looked to run up the score against most opponents. So if the Fighting Illini do win the game, it will likely be due to the defense. Michigan State’s offense has been all over the map this season, showing sparks of big-play ability while also falling completely flat. The most simplistic key to the game for MSU is just getting into the end zone on offense. So in this week’s SB Nation Reacts survey, we want to know how many touchdowns the MSU offense is going to score.
With that in mind, can Michigan State actually win the game?
Finally, from the outside looking in, what do you think of the Illinois team? So much is still unknown about Bret Bielema’s squad. Are the Fighting Illini as good as their record shows, or just another Big Ten West team beating bad opponents?
Cast your vote now and be on the lookout for results coming later this week.