College football’s game of the week will take place in Columbus this Saturday, as No. 3 Ohio State (10-0) hosts No. 9 Michigan State (9-1) at 3:30 p.m. ET.
In one corner, we have the Buckeyes, who boast a top-10 pass defense and one of the best rushing offenses in the country with J.T. Barrett and Ezekiel Elliott.
In the other corner, we have the Spartans, who . . . really don’t do anything great this year.
“You’re overly generous toward Michigan State. I don’t think they do anything exceptionally well, let alone great,” Vegas virtuoso and sportsline.com analyst Todd Fuhrman said on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “Aside from Connor Cook offensively, this team really lacks weapons. Anyone who was forced to watch their effort last week against Maryland, where they couldn’t even surpass 275 yards against the Terrapins, (is) not going to be in for a surprise this weekend. I think Ohio State has a chance to absolutely boat race the Spartans and prove their mettle as top dog in the Eastern division of the Big Ten.
“You look at the Buckeyes,” Fuhrman continued. “They’ve raised their game in certain spots this year against Rutgers, Penn State – and even last week against Illinois, a dominant defensive effort. I think they’ll stymy the Spartans. Ohio State, I really believe, gets off to a quick start and they win this game comfortably. I’m talking north of three touchdowns.”
Ohio State has won 23 straight games but has looked underwhelming for much of the season, needing late defensive stops to fend off Northern Illinois and Indiana, among others. Nevertheless, the Buckeyes are favored by 13.5 points against Michigan State – a spread Fuhrman believes the Buckeyes will cover with ease.
“I think this is a game that Ohio State has had circled,” Fuhrman said. “Senior Day in Columbus. We’ve seen this offense look so much more explosive with J.T. Barrett and Ezekiel Elliott out there clicking on all cylinders. I think the Ohio State defense – you mentioned where they rank statistically – a lot of that is byproduct of their schedule. But at the same time, Michigan State (is) not anything close to the offensive capabilities we saw a year ago when they took Baylor to the wire in their bowl game.”