I’m going off the rails on a Crazy Train

Buckeyes on the road again

Yet another game on the road in primetime for Urban Meyer’s Ohio State Buckeyes. This week, the 7-0 Buckeyes travel to West Lafayette, Ind. to take on Jeff Brohm’s Purdue Boilermakers. Purdue comes into this game with a 3-3 record. In those three losses, the Boilermakers lost by a combined eight points.

Ohio State on the road: very good.

Ohio State on the road versus Purdue: yikes.

Since the year 2000, Ohio State is just 3-4 in West Lafayette. In fact, Purdue has a better winning percentage against Ohio State than all other Big Ten teams since 2000.

Laying the foundation

Who: Ohio State Buckeyes vs. Purdue Boilermakers
When: 7:30 p.m. Saturday
Where: Ross-Ade Stadium in West Lafayette, Ind.
TV: ABC (Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit)
Series Record: Ohio State 39-2-14 Purdue
Last Meeting: 56-0 Ohio State (2013)
First Meeting: 20-0 Ohio State (1919)
Spread: Ohio State -13.5

No. 2 Ohio State Buckeyes (7-0, 4-0)

Schedule to date

vs Oregon State (W 77-31)
vs Rutgers (W 52-3)
at TCU (W 40-28)
vs Tulane (W 49-6)
at Penn State (W 27-26)
vs Indiana (W 49-26)
vs Minnesota (W 30-14)

Minnesota

It was an underwhelming performance from Ohio State last Saturday when the Minnesota Golden Gophers came to town. The Buckeye defense gave up 238 yards in the first half and led just 17-14 going into the break. Defense improved for Ohio State in the second half, giving up 158 yards and no points. Despite the victory, that game left a lot of concerns in the minds of Ohio State fans.

The running game was lackluster and averaged just 2.9 yards per carry. Ohio State as a whole did not reach 100 rushing yards.

The offensive line had their worst game of the season, giving up three sacks and forcing Haskins to scramble a number of times.

A glaring issue the last two years has been the linebacker core for the Buckeyes. Minnesota seemingly attacked the center of the field at will, which is certainly something to expect from Purdue this Saturday.

The passing game, on the other hand, was next level. In program history, there have been three 400-yard games at Ohio State. Two of those games belong to Dwayne Haskins. Haskins went for 412 yards and three touchdowns, while also tying the completions record two games in a row. KJ Hill had a monster game with 187 yards and two touchdowns.

Minnesota game stats
Full season stats

Injuries
  • Nick Bosa has announced that he will forego the rest of his junior year at Ohio State to focus on preparing for the NFL.
  • Malik Harrison and Jonathan Cooper are both expected to return this week. Damon Arnette and Thayer Munford are questionable.
  • Sean Nuernberger was out of last week’s game with a mild sprain.

Purdue Boilermakers (3-3, 2-1)

Schedule to date

vs Northwestern (L 31-27)
vs Eastern Michigan (L 20-19)
vs Missouri (L 40-37)
vs Boston College (W 30-13)
at Nebraska (W 42-28)
at Illinois (W 46-7)

It was a slow start to the season for Purdue, but they are riding a three game win streak coming into Ohio State. Boston College was a ranked opponent at the time, and the Boilermakers took care of business against the Cornhuskers and Illini.

Quarterback David Blough is throwing an impressive 68.4% this season for 1,695 yards and 10 touchdowns. D.J. Knox has been consistent in the running game for the Boilermakers. Knox averages 6.2 yards per carry and has five touchdowns.

One of the most electric players in college football this year is undoubtedly freshman Rondale Moore. Moore broke onto the seen against Northwestern with 188 total yards and two touchdowns in his first collegiate appearance. Since then, Moore has racked up 558 receiving yards with five touchdowns, and 139 more yards on the ground with a TD. With the struggles Ohio State has had on defense, look for Rondale Moore to be the key to this game for Purdue.

Illinois game stats
Full season stats

Storylines

  • Ohio State is 3-4 on the road against Purdue since 2000.
  • The last Boilermaker victory came against the 2011 Buckeyes, who finished with a 6-7 record.
  • The evening forecast for the game predicts a low of 30 degrees with possible showers.
  • Ohio State’s three victories in West Lafayette since 2000 have results in four, 16 and 56 point wins.

Prediction

I have been going back and forth on this game the entire week. Part of me sees Ohio State coming out focused after two lackluster performance, while the other sees Purdue pulling another win at home against the Buckeyes.

My gut tells me to pick the Boilermakers, but my mind says Ohio State should come away with the win. Dwayne Haskins and a very talented receiving core will be going up against the 109th ranked pass defense in the country. Ohio State’s defense has been not all that impressive, however they return a handful of key players from injury this weekend. It is close throughout the game, and the Buckeyes score in the fourth quarter to put Purdue away.

31-27 Ohio State

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Author Details
My name is Collin Ginnan and I am majoring in Journalism and Spanish at The Ohio State University. I grew up playing baseball year-round from t-ball through high school and am a diehard Cincinnati Reds fan. Coming from a family of Buckeyes, I was raised living and breathing Ohio State football. To the best of my memory, I have not missed a single game to date. Ohio State vs. Penn State during Homecoming? That’s what the Watch ESPN app is for. Besides the Buckeyes and Reds, I follow the Blue Jackets, Browns, Cavaliers, FC Cincinnati, and Liverpool FC.
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My name is Collin Ginnan and I am majoring in Journalism and Spanish at The Ohio State University. I grew up playing baseball year-round from t-ball through high school and am a diehard Cincinnati Reds fan. Coming from a family of Buckeyes, I was raised living and breathing Ohio State football. To the best of my memory, I have not missed a single game to date. Ohio State vs. Penn State during Homecoming? That’s what the Watch ESPN app is for. Besides the Buckeyes and Reds, I follow the Blue Jackets, Browns, Cavaliers, FC Cincinnati, and Liverpool FC.

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