As jiMpossible pointed out, somehow he has become the more confident one. Back in July I predicted M would finish 8-4, which seemed pretty optimistic.
I had M at 4-2 at this point, with losses against ND and Northwestern. Obviously M pulled out victories in both games. Looking forward. I had M losing to Iowa and Nebraska in the second half. While I wouldn't say M will definitely beat the Hawkeyes, it would seem they should. Nebraska I feel a little more confident against than I did back in July.
That being said, this week will tell quite a bit. I don't think MSU is as good as they were last season, but they are probably the best team M has played since the miracle UTL.
If Hoke can break the first time coaching in the Paul Bunyan game streak, M will definitely be the front funner for the boneg game in Indianapolis. If not they'll need help.
I'm going to go out on a limb and say M will be playing in a BCS game this January.