Friday, September 28, 2012

Prediction for Ohio State vs. Michigan State

The Big Ten season is going to start off really well for one team and really poorly for the other as Michigan State hosts Ohio State at 3:30 p.m. today.
This game could really go a number of ways, as both teams have looked bad in recent weeks.
However, this game looks to be shaping up well for Michigan State in my opinion.
This is not an easy task for Ohio State, as it plays its road opener against one of the top teams in the Big Ten. Regardless of what the Buckeyes have done on offense or defense this season, you don’t truly know about your team until you play on the road.
Look at Nebraska. The Cornhuskers are like night and day when it comes to playing at home or on the road.
Ohio State can win this game if it can manage to make big plays on offense and special teams. I don’t see the Buckeyes being able to sustain drives against the MSU defense, but there will be opportunities for a big play here and there. Braxton Miller will need to be aggressive and accurate when he attacks the MSU secondary. Turnovers are likely to happen, but that can’t discourage him from taking chances later in the game. If the Buckeyes can get a few big touchdown plays, that could be enough to win the game.
Michigan State can win if the defense keeps Miller in check and the offensive resolves some of its issues of recent weeks. Expect the Buckeyes to stack the box on defense and dare Andrew Maxwell and the Michigan State receivers to beat them. If the Spartans can avoid drops and Le’Veon Bell can continue to be a consistent presence on the ground, Michigan State shouldn’t have much trouble putting drives together on this Ohio State defense, which is giving up nearly 400 yards per game.
The potential is there for this to be a 6-3 game. The potential is also there for there to be some scoring. Expect somewhere in between. The Spartans should have gotten a wake-up call from last week’s performance against Eastern Michigan. If MSU can’t get up and play well for this game, then it’s going to be a long season in Spartan country.
Ohio State is still far from a finished product. Urban Meyer will probably do big things with the Buckeyes, but not this year. Look for Michigan State to pick up another win over OSU in a hard-fought, grind-it-out game.
Prediction: MSU 20, Ohio State 10

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