Ohio State Football lives a pretty good life. Despite only winning and playing in three games, being the second place team in their division and having less wins than two other teams in their conference, the Buckeyes are near the top of the AP Poll, ranked third in the nation as a team. When we really break it down, it’s kind of a head-scratcher. Why doesn’t Northwestern or Indiana have that spot over them? Oh well, that’s college football for you and at the very least, Ohio State will be truly challenged for the first time this week.
They will be taking in the Indiana Hoosiers, ranked ninth in the nation and having their best season since 1967. Nope….that’s not a typo, ninth is the highest they have been rated since 1967. Seriously, the last time the Hoosiers were ranked this high, a man hadn’t stepped foot on the moon, the Cold War had another 24 years to go and The Beatles were in their prime.
Tom Allen has done a fantastic job over the last five seasons to turn the Hoosiers into a legitimate program in the Big 10 East that will battle for bowl games and even one day a Big 10 Championship. If the Hoosiers can get through the Buckeyes on Saturday, that day may be coming sooner rather than later. If they can beat the third best team in the country, there is a very real shot that they could be playing in a College Football Playoff Game, so there is just a little bit of pressure on the squad to play the game of their lives.
Despite all the rah-rah talk that you just read, Indiana is still a 20.5 point underdog, a bit disrespectful but justified given their history against Ohio State. In their last 10 game against the Buckeyes, the Hoosiers are a perfect 0-10. They have covered in seven of those games but I’d pin that on an unfair spread from the bookmakers. Indiana has turned their defense around and rank 21st in the country in total scoring. That unti will be pushed to the max against a Buckeye team that has scored 52, 38 and 49 points in their last three contests.
Ohio State Key Players:
Ohio State, Garrett Wilson – The sophomore wide receiver has broken out during his three games in a big way. He has 24 receptions for 344 yards and two touchdowns while averaging more than 14 yards per catch. Last year he had just 432 yards total so he clearly is becoming one of Ohio State’s top players and a favorite target for Justin Fields to throw to.
Indiana Key Players:
Indiana, Michael Penix Jr. – The sophomore QB has broken out into a very good season for the Indiana Hoosiers and is throwing for over 1000 yards with nine touchdowns and three interceptions. Penix Jr. is the key player to focus in on because if he has a bad game, Indiana has a bad game.
The Buckeyes are really, really good and need a win over a ranked opponent to be “legit”
Indiana 21 Ohio State 41
By: Matt Lively CruelFan.com