The Buckeyes and the Spartans get set to do battle this Saturday in East Lansing. This game could completely destroy any chance of Ohio State making the playoffs. The Spartans come in 6-3 and are hoping to finish the season with 9 wins. The 8-1 Buckeyes are looking to keep winning to keep their playoff hopes alive.
The Buckeyes are still Struggling
When the Buckeyes struggled against Minnesota, it felt fluky, when they lost to Purdue it was a shock, and now the close finish against Nebraska has Ohio State fans everywhere wondering what’s going on. Teams Ohio State usually obliterates have been hanging tough with them for weeks now. The problem for Ohio State is this week they play a top 25 team on the road and the last road game they played they got smacked by Purdue.
Michigan State usually plays Ohio State tough with the exception of last year when the Buckeyes defeated Sparty 48-3. The game is on the road and the Buckeyes have been less than impressive for weeks now. Something that must improve for the Ohio State offense against Michigan State is the run game. That’s not going to be easy to do as the Spartans have the best run defense in the country. Sparty gives up 71.7 yards per game on the ground and the Buckeyes offensive line will be in for a challenge. The offensive line has been the problem with the run game and it looks like it will be no different this weekend.
Sparty’s Pass Defense Should get Exploited
Michigan State’s pass defense is ranked 97thoverall. They give up 253.4 yd/game in the air and have given up 11 passing touchdowns. Ohio State will look to take advantage of the secondary of the Spartans. The Buckeyes average 369.1 yds/game in the air and have the third ranked passing attack in college football. If Michigan State can hold their own with their pass defense, expect the Spartans to win big.
Something to Watch: Less Than Impressive Ohio State D VS. Mediocre Offense of Michigan State
Michigan State is ranked 98thin total yds/game this season and will face an Ohio State defense that has been disappointing since Nick Bosa got hurt. The Ohio State defense is usually ranked in the top five in total defense, but this year the Buckeyes are currently ranked at 72nd. It is going to be interesting to see who shows up either the offense of Michigan State or the Buckeye defense. Whoever does show up can change this game.
My Prediction for this Game
I think Dwayne Haskins will pick apart the secondary of the Spartans and the Buckeyes offense will have a solid game. Experienced Brian Lewerke will keep Michigan State in the game, but Dwayne Haskins and the passing attack the Buckeyes will provide too much offense for the Spartans to overcome.
Ohio State Wins: 35-28
Ohio State’s Playoff Chances
The Buckeyes were ranked 10thfor the second week in a row by the committee. Not surprising after they played Nebraska down to the very end in Columbus last weekend. The question a lot of people have is do the Buckeyes have a chance to get in? With what is left on the schedule I would answer yes, technically. Ohio State would have a chance to get in if they go undefeated, however, with the way they are playing, it doesn’t look likely that they will win out and they may even lose two of their last three. Although I think Ohio State will win this game, it’s a top 25 match-up on the road and it’s not going to be easy for them.
Where to Watch: FOX
Forecast: Sunny, High: 37 Low 23
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