Most college football fans feel that Michigan versus Ohio State ranks as one of the greatest battles of all time. The two teams meet again this Saturday, but, as has been the case in recent memory, only one team is playing for something. The hometown Buckeyes are 20 point FBS Rivalry Week spread betting favorites in this matchup against the visiting Wolverines.
That team, Ohio State, needs to have a big enough win to sway the Selection Committee. A big win on Saturday versus rival Michigan, coupled with a victory in the Big Ten Championship, could propel the Buckeyes into the Top 4.
Michigan Wolverines at No. 6 Ohio State Buckeyes
When: Saturday, Nov. 29 at 12:00 pm ET
Betting Line: Ohio State -20
Analyzing My Rivalry Week Michigan at Ohio State Spread Betting Pick
The Wolverines lead the all-time record. Michigan has beaten Ohio State 58 times for a .500 win percentage record. The largest margin of victory was in 1902 when the Wolverines kept their foot on the gas pedal for a stunning 86 to 0 victory.
Even though Michigan leads the all-time record, in recent memory it’s been all Ohio State. Ohio State has won the last two meetings and is a big favorite to make it three in a row. For the Buckeyes, everything begins with QB J.T. Barrett. Barrett, who wasn’t even the starter at the beginning of the season, has put up Heisman-like numbers. He’s thrown for 2658 yards and he’s tossed 33 touchdown passes to only 10 interceptions. He’s rushed for 849 yards and 9 touchdowns.
Against Michigan State, whose defense was supposedly one of the best in the nation, Barrett went wild. He threw for 300 yards and 3 touchdowns with no interceptions. Barrett and the Ohio State offense gets to face Michigan’s ninth ranked defense. The Wolverines defense is good enough to slow Barrett down to a point.
The problem for Michigan is that their offense is terrible. Because the offense can’t keep the ball, the very good defense breaks down at the end of games. This has occurred many times during this season, including in the Wolverines’ last game, a 16 to 23 loss to Maryland where the Terrapins scored 14 points to the Wolverines’ 0 in the fourth quarter.
Michigan only averages 20 points and 329.5 yards per game. The Wolverines have gone 4 and 7 against the spread this season, a woeful 1 and 3 ATS on the road, and a terrible 1 and 3 ATS in their last 4 games including losing 11 to 35 to Michigan State on the road.
This is a rivalry game, but Michigan’s offense is so bad that it’s tough to look past Ohio State to come up big on Saturday. The current trends definitely favor the Buckeyes since Michigan is 1 and 5 against the spread in the last 6 meetings in Columbus and 1 and 6 against the spread in the last 7 meetings overall.
Urban Meyer told his players he will have a no-tolerance policy for bad behavior in Ohio State's game vs Michigan: http://t.co/CjrmohkUBj
— College GameDay (@CollegeGameDay) November 25, 2014
Emotion and history will only take you so far. Ohio State is the much better team than Michigan. The Buckeyes know that the only way to sway the Selection Committee, because their lone loss was too a dud, Virginia Tech, is to blow out their rival on Saturday and then win convincingly in the Big Ten Championship.
Ohio State is the team to back against the Michigan Wolverines on Saturday.