It doesn’t take a college football expert to point out that Rutgers is an overwhelming underdog at home this weekend against Ohio State.
Currently, the Buckeyes are projected as 29.5-point favorite on the road.
History does not bode well for the Scarlet Knights, as they are 0-3 against the Buckeyes. Last season, Rutgers was shut out 58-0 when they visited Columbus.
It would take nothing short of a miracle for Rutgers to pull of an upset this Saturday. If they intend on beating Ohio State, they should focus on these three things.
Force J.T. Barrett to Hold the Ball:
Every time the Ohio State offense struggles it is because J.T. Barrett holds onto the ball too long. In the loss to Oklahoma, Barrett restrained himself from throwing the ball and decided to run too often. Forcing Barrett to run is beneficial to Rutgers, since it keeps the ball out of the hands of talented freshman running back J.K. Dobbins. The Rutgers defense will need to keep Ohio State out of the end zone if they want to remain in this game.
Control the Clock:
Rutgers will have to play strategically in order to win. Scoring too fast will not allow their defenders a chance to regain their breath against a super-talented Ohio State offense. The Scarlet Knights must play complementary football. Controlling the clock will keep the Ohio State defense on it’s heels while also preventing the Ohio State offense from scoring.
Give Janarion Grant the Ball:
Rutgers will need big plays in order to beat Ohio State and Janarion Grant is the player who can provide them. The senior wide receiver is one of the most explosive players in the country. From returning kicks to catching passes and even throwing passes, Grant can do it all. The Ohio State secondary is one of their weakest links and a speedy receiver like Grant could do some major damage. Rutgers will have to rely on Grant if they want to have a chance.
Although Ohio State is basically a lock this week Rutgers has had a history of winning big games at home. Just ask the 2006 Louisville Cardinals team or the 2014 Michigan Wolverines. Nothing is impossible in college football.
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