Friday, December 6, 2013
Why Ohio State can beat Michigan State
1. Carlos Hyde/Braxton Miller – I will be hesitant to say these two are the best players that will be on the field on Saturday night, because I have a lot of respect for some of the defensive talent MSU has. However, these two are clearly the top players on offense on either team and that is a big strength to have in college football. Hyde is a load to bring down and the Spartans have shown some struggles dealing with big, physical running backs in recent weeks. Hyde is every bit of his 6-foot, 242-pound listing and if he gets going early, it could be a long night for the MSU defense. Miller rushed for 136 yards and threw for 179 last year against Michigan State, but this defense is more dynamic. Still, he is a game breaker and doesn’t need much of an opening to break a big run or throw a big pass.
2. Connor Cook – Hyde and Miller can win the game for Ohio State, but it would be hard to imagine either one losing the game for the Buckeyes. The same can’t be said for the Michigan State quarterback. Cook has done a nice job of avoiding turnovers this year (4 interceptions) but he has been less than accurate on his fair share of passes. In a game like this, where MSU may have to score more than its 29.4-point average, Cook can’t afford to miss on a lot of throws, especially the ones that could lead to touchdowns. If MSU is unable to win, it wouldn’t surprise me if a couple of misthrows from Cook are a big reason as to why.
3. Urban Meyer – Like him or not, Urban Meyer is a darn good coach. I have respect for what Mark Dantonio has accomplished at Michigan State, but Meyer has won multiple national championships and has yet to lose as head coach of Ohio State. He can be out-coached in a single game, but it is likely that he will have some tricks up his sleeve for MSU. If Ohio State is to lose, I can’t imagine it will be because Meyer didn’t have his team ready to play.