Oregon State Beavers vs. Ohio State Buckeyes Prediction
Oregon State Beavers (2017 1-11 SU, 3-9 ATS) vs. No. 5 Ohio State Buckeyes (2017 12-2 SU, 7-7 ATS)
College Football Week 1
Date/Time: Saturday September 1st, 2018. 12:00PM (EST)
Where: Ohio Stadium Columbus, O.H
Point Spread: ORST +37/OSU -37
Over/Under Total: 64
I can’t think of any other questions to ask for this game except “will the drama unfolding off the field effect Ohio State on the field?” If you have been hiding under a rock in recent weeks, the Ohio State football program has been under the microscope for the way Head Coach Urban Meyer mishandled behavior reports and allegations of domestic abuse among one of the member’s of his coaching staff. While I never want to get caught up unnecessary media crossfire, the Buckeyes have already handed Meyer a 3-game suspension, and some are calling for his termination. With the uncertainty lingering, I think we have a legitimate question surrounding how these events will affect the preparation, play calling, and overall performance for the Buckeyes in their home opener this week as 37 point favorites against Oregon State.
The good news for the Buckeyes is that they will draw a helpless Oregon State team in their opener which is on the heels of a 1-11 campaign in 2017. I mean we are talking about a program that has regressed to just 7 wins combined in the last 3 years. We are talking about a Beavers defense that was among the worst groups in the country last year ranked 120th in total defense yielding 473 yards per game and the 3rd worst scoring defense in the nation giving up a whopping 43 points per game. Therefore while I have my uncertainties surrounding the Buckeyes, I am going ahead and ruling out an Appalachian State/Michigan style upset that would disrupt the entire college landscape.
Reasons for Uncertainty
Despite the off-field drama surrounding the coaching staff, the Buckeyes still have questions to answer on the field. The Buckeyes return just 12 starters this year, and the majority of the holes are on the defensive side of the football. The offense is poised to be extremely talented with freshman J.K Dobbins returning after a breakout campaign in 2017 that highlighted totals of 1,400 rushing yards and 7 touchdowns. The offensive line should be solid, and the receiving corps should be solid as well with Parris Campbell and KJ Hill. However, we know how important the quarterback position is in football, and the Buckeyes have to replace the former longtime starter, J.T Barrett. Sophomore Dwayne Haskins has earned the starting nod. While Haskins looked solid in limited action in 2017, he will have to be the every-down leader in 2018 to keep this offense going.
Despite being hesitant anytime a team breaks in a new quarterback, the Buckeyes offense could be just fine especially later in the year. I would question their effectiveness out of the gates in week 1, but I would further question the effectiveness of the defense as well. I believe the Buckeyes biggest headaches will be on the defensive side of the ball where just 5 starters return, and some serious talent must be replaced. The Buckeyes offense has received a lot of praise in recent years, but they have benefited from tremendous defensive play that has allowed that success. The Buckeyes gave up just 19 points per game in 2017 and consistently set up the offensive in advantageous situations. What happens if that trend changes?
Reasons to take the points
Let’s face facts, 37 points is an extremely high number even for the biggest of mismatches. Despite being 1-11 in 2017, the Beavers were only beaten once by more than 37 points, and that was a blowout loss to Oregon in the finale when most had already packed it up for the year. The Beavers have 15 starters returning including additional players with experience like quarterback Jake Luton and running back Artavis Pierce. Now I am not going to hype any of those players up to sound like world beaters, but they have enough experience to move the football especially if Ohio State’s defense has growing pains.
Jay’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Ohio State is going to be solid this year, but I just do not see them exploding out of the gates which will be needed to cover this 37 point spread. Ohio State has to break in a new quarterback, new defensive personnel, and still has tons of questions around the coaching staff. The number is just too big here. Take Oregon State +37! Editors Note: You can’t shop for the best lines if you don’t have multiple betting accounts. Find betting sites that fit your style of play by visiting our Best Sportsbook List.