Ohio State Buckeyes at Michigan State Spartans Pick
Ohio State Buckeyes (8-1 SU, 3-6 ATS) vs. Michigan State Spartans (6-3 SU, 4-5 ATS)
When: Saturday, November 10th, 2018 – 12:00 PM ET
Where: Spartan Stadium, East Lansing, Michigan
Point Spread: BUCKS -3.5 / MSU +3.5
Poll Rankings: Ohio State (8) / Michigan State (NR)
Takeaways From Week 10
The Buckeyes were on upset alert last Saturday in Columbus when Nebraska came to town as a 17-point underdog and gave the Scarlet and Grey a four-quarter game. As a whole, the Buckeyes had looked like a completely different team since getting blown out at Purdue two weeks ago when they were ranked the number two team in the land. Most notably, the Buckeye defense has become virtually non-existent as it has given over 1,000 yards of offense combined in both the Purdue and Nebraska games. The thing is Michigan State’s offense is virtually non-existent in its own right.
State comes in on a two-game losing streak and seems to be getting better with each week that passes since their 10-point loss to rival Michigan on the 20th of October. The story surrounding this team (as is the story that surrounds most Michigan State teams) is the defense. The Spartans have allowed just 16 points in their previous two wins against Purdue and then at Maryland while ascending to own the best rushing defense in America.
How the Public is Betting the Ohio State-Michigan State Game
Presently, 63% of the consensus like Ohio State in this spot. This is to be expected considering the public element of a blue-blood team such as the Buckeyes. It is worth annotating that 3.5 is usually a favorite number designed to gather action on the dog with the hook of losing by a field goal still gaining a win against the spread. Needless to say, the public has not bitten by any means.
Last year, Ohio State blew the doors of Michigan State in what was a bounce-back victory for Ohio State after they were rolled in Iowa. The Buckeyes smacked Sparty by a score of 48-3. As a whole, this series has been competitive as State has won three of the last seven meetings between both sides.
Ohio State has gotten used to playing without defensive end Nick Bosa and has come to terms with the knowledge he will not be returning to the field as he prepares for the NFL. However, there is a key injury concern for Sparty. Running back L.J Scott is listed as day-to-day, and his status remains up in the air. Scott is an instrumental asset that Coach Mark D’Antonio will need at his disposal. The running back is a game changer and can be used as an effective weapon to run at and wear down this Buckeyes defense.
When Ohio State Has the Ball
This Ohio State offense has plenty of toys in its chest, but it all starts with its quarterback Dwayne Haskins. In the build-up to the Purdue game, Haskins was on a short list for Heisman contenders. With this being said, Haskins has still put together an impressive resume for why he should be considered as he has thrown for 3,053 yards, 32 touchdowns, and just six interceptions while completing only under 70% of his passes. Haskins spearheads an Ohio State offense that ranks third in the country in the passing department (369.1 yards per game) that is fifth overall in total offense (547.4 yards per game). The talk is Michigan State’s rushing defense, but Haskins can just throw over the Spartans who are 98th in the land against the pass (253.4 yards per game).
When Michigan State Has the Ball
As a whole Michigan State is a defense-first team. This is reflected in the fact that the Spartans average just 23.4 points per game (111th in America). Nevertheless, this has worked for the Spartans as they give up only 19 points per game which means they like to grind out wins the old-fashioned way. However, when Michigan State has the ball, they want to play keep away and establish a balanced attack. Unfortunately for Sparty, the only component that seems well-oiled is its 65th ranked passing offense (234.8 yards per game) led by quarterback Brian Lewerke.
The underdog is 6-1 ATS in the previous seven meetings which sells the stock of Michigan State in this contest. Contrarily, the Buckeyes are 5-2 ATS in their last seven outings in East Lansing. For those that play totals, the Under is also 5-2 ATS in the last seven fixtures.
It’s going to be a cold day in East Lansing on Saturday with temperatures to malinger around the freezing mark. The forecast calls for partly sunny skies, but that will provide no solace to overall frigid environs produced as that cold arctic air sweeps down from Canada.
Keith’s Pick to Cover the Spread: Ohio State -3.5
We will take you back to the first week of action when the Spartans crossed path with the now-ranked Utah State Aggies who average 50.1 points per game (2nd in America). Michigan State gave up 31 points to this outfit and was lucky to win the game and not be subjected to an upset as a 24-point favorite against a mid-major opponent. Regarding quality, the USU offense is the closest thing that Michigan State has faced that compares to the machine that is coming to East Lansing on Saturday. Sparty was able to get away with this because they put up 38 on the Aggies, but in fairness, they did this against a Mountain West constituent. On the flip side, Ohio State was touted by many to win the conference and appear in the College Football Playoff. Bottom line, this game will get out of hand if it becomes a shootout. Michigan State very merely will not be able to outscore the Buckeyes. The fact remains that Ohio State will generate some points as it will exploit the Michigan State secondary. Sadly, MSU’s offense won’t be able to bail them out as easy as Ohio State still has some frightening buffet-busters lining up on the defensive front that can wreak havoc in Sparty’s backfield. Ohio State gets it done and covers. Fellas, are you looking to bet online? Get signed up lightening fast at Intertops and get up to $200 free!