No. 4 Ohio State Buckeyes (2-0 SU, 1-1 ATS) vs. California Bears (1-1 SU, 0-2 ATS)
College Football Week 3
Date and Time: Saturday, September 14th, 2014, 7:00 pm EST
Where: Memorial Stadium, Berkeley, Calif.
by Badger, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: OSU -14/Cal +14
Over/Under Total: OFF at time of print.
The 4th-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes are still awaiting
word of the health of starting quarterback Braxton Millers knee, but the
week-to-week grind of college football wont stop to wait, so the Buckeyes
will have to get ready for a long road trip on Saturday to take on the California
Bears in Memorial Stadium in Berkeley.
Miller left the Buckeyes week two game against San Diego State with a sprained left knee after just one series, then watched as backup Kenny Guiton threw for two touchdowns and ran for another in the Buckeyes, 42-7, rout of the Aztecs. The early word was that Miller was cleared to play, but held out by coach Urban Meyer because, frankly, the Aztecs are not worth the risk.
Its been a bumpy road out of the gates for new coach Sonny Dykes in Berkeley. First, Cal was worn down in their opener by Northwestern, 44-20. Then last week they showed almost no ability to put away mighty Portland State late in the second half, stumbling to a, 37-30, win in a game where they closed as 31-point favorites in Las Vegas.
Cal has yet to play 60 minutes of solid football, which has pretty much been their M.O. and the reason Dykes was brought in to shake things up. With Miller iffy, and maybe less than 100 percent if he does play, the Bears may somehow find a way to put it all together for a huge upset in primetime on Fox.
With the mystery surround Miller and whether or not hes going to play this week, the game is still off the board as of this writing.
On the surface the Buckeyes didnt seem to miss Miller much against San Diego State, especially since they scored 42 points and finished with an average of 6.6 yards per carry running the ball. But I think what is more telling is the fact the Buckeyes only were 7-for-15 on third down (47%) with over six yards a carry? Sounds like bad play calling to me. Either way, the Bears defense is ranked 118th overall after two weeks, so Ohio State should be able to push their way around on Saturday.
What has been a success at Cal under Dykes is the up-tempo offense, which is ranked No. 1 in passing yards per game (470) in the NCAA and is scoring over 33 points a game after two weeks of play. Starting QB Jared Goff is only a freshman, but he already has 930 yards passing after just two weeks. The Cal spread attack might get some points on the Buckeyes defense, especially if Meyer continues to sit CB Bradley Roby, but Goff is a freshman and subject to silly mistakes at times (3 INT vs. Northwestern), so it would take a miracle for the Bears to put it all together for the first time for 60 minutes, on Saturday.
Last year Cal gave the Buckeyes a challenge at the Horseshoe in Columbus, but eventually they wore down and Ohio State slipped away with a, 35-28, victory. The Bears did cover the large 17-point spread the Buckeyes were staked to as favorites last year, and the game went over the closing total of 55 early in the fourth quarter.
Badger’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Check back once they release a point spread to see if theres any value in this game, but unless theres a colossal mistake, it might be best to just look at other games on Saturdays college football card.
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