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Michigan vs. Penn State will determine Ohio State’s biggest challenger (if there is one)

The winner of Penn State at Michigan may present the biggest challenger to Ohio State in the Big Ten East race.

While both rival teams still have to play Ohio State this season, all eyes in Big Ten Country are on No. 5 Michigan hosting No. 10 Penn State on Big Noon Saturday.

James Franklin’s Nittany Lions are 5-0 and are playing their best football in years. Fresh off a Big Ten Championship, Jim Harbaugh’s Wolverines have not skipped a beat, even after making a change at quarterback from Cade McNamara to J.J. McCarthy. All the while, the winner of this game may end up being the second-best team in the conference, possibly the best in due time…

Here is what is at stake when the Wolverines host the Nittany Lions on Saturday in The Big House.

Penn State at Michigan winner may produce Ohio State’s biggest Big Ten threat

If Penn State were to go into The Big House and steal a victory away from Michigan, it would go a long way toward the Nittany Lions potentially being the team to beat in the Big Ten East. Next week they will host Minnesota. Should Penn State be 7-0 after hosting the Golden Gophers, the Nittany Lions will have all the momentum when the Buckeyes come to town for their Whiteout.

As for the Wolverines, they will be on their annual bye next week before hosting a reeling Michigan State team in two weeks. While the Illinois home date in mid-November could be a trap game, there is an excellent possibility that the Wolverines get to The Horseshoe undefeated at 11-0. Although they have struggled in Columbus for a while now, Michigan did win The Game last year.

Ultimately, the winner of this Big Noon Saturday game will have the potential to upset Ohio State. Penn State will host the Buckeyes in a few weeks, but the Nittany Lions have to survive Michigan in The Big House. As for the Wolverines, anything and everything can happen in a massive Thanksgiving Weekend rivalry game with everything on the line. One of them will win the Big Ten.

Even with an Ohio State loss later, the winner of this game is a playoff contender and will go NY6.

For more College Football news, analysis, opinion and unique coverage by FanSided, including Heisman Trophy and College Football Playoff rankings, be sure to bookmark these pages.

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