Last Updated Dec 13, 2022, 4:55 PM
Michigan Wolverines vs. Ohio State Buckeyes Picks, Predictions, Odds
Sports Betting Expert
There is a lot more than just bragging rights on the line when the No. 2 Ohio State Buckeyes face the No. 3 Michigan Wolverines on the last weekend of the regular season. The winner of this game will claim the Big Ten East title and a spot in the Big Ten Championship Game, and they will likely assure themselves of a berth in the College Football Playoff. These hated rivals will square off on Saturday, November 26, at 12 p.m. ET on FOX from Ohio Stadium in Columbus, Ohio.
Michigan Wolverines vs. Ohio State Buckeyes Betting Prediction
It's been over two decades since the last time the Michigan Wolverines defeated the Ohio State Buckeyes in Columbus. That underscores how one-sided this rivalry has been in recent years as Ohio State has defeated Michigan in 16 of the last 18 seasons. Jim Harbaugh is looking to change that after last year's 42-27 win over Ohio State in Ann Arbor, but Michigan is more than a touchdown underdog by the college football betting odds in the most important game on Rivalry Week.
Score Prediction: Michigan 27, Ohio State 24
Best Bet: Michigan +8 (-110)
Michigan Wolverines vs. Ohio State Buckeyes Betting Odds
Michigan Wolverines vs. Ohio State Buckeyes Betting Resources
Michigan Wolverines Betting Analysis
At the start of the season, Jim Harbaugh announced that J.J. McCarthy and Cade McNamara would split the first two starts to determine who Michigan's starting quarterback would be in 2022. McNamara was the incumbent, but the offense had a governor on it with him under center. Once McCarthy proved that he was ready to take the reins, he became the clear choice and has made this offense a very good unit. The Wolverines rank 28th in Offensive SP+ as McCarthy has completed 66.8% of his passes for 1,952 yards (7.9 YPA) with 14 touchdowns and two interceptions. He is averaging 4.3 YPC as a rusher, and he could take off more than usual against Ohio State's defense.
Blake Corum is one of the top running backs in the nation. Corum has run for 1,457 yards (5.9 YPC) and 18 touchdowns this season, but his status for this game is up in the air. He tweaked his knee last week against Illinois, and Michigan has sent out mixed signals as to his availability. Donovan Edwards has run for 471 yards (6.7 YPC) and four touchdowns, and he could see a significant uptick in his workload against the Buckeyes. The only receiver to fear in the passing game is Ronnie Bell who has 48 catches for 641 yards and two touchdowns.
Michigan ranks 4th in Defensive SP+. The Wolverines' pass rush isn't as menacing without Aidan Hutchinson or David Ojabo, but they have still been lights out when it comes to shutting down opposing offenses. They are surrendering 11.7 PPG, 241.3 YPG, and 3.9 yards per play, and they rank first nationally in all three categories. The Wolverines are conceding a measly 2.8 YPC and 79.5 YPG on the ground too. Mike Morris leads the team with seven sacks, and Michigan has 31 sacks in 11 games. About the only thing the Wolverines don't do is force turnovers, forcing just 11 turnovers this season.
Ohio State Buckeyes Betting Analysis
C.J. Stroud is one of the best quarterbacks in college football. Stroud is completing 66.4% of his passes for 2,991 yards (9.7 YPA) with 35 touchdowns and four interceptions. That has led to the Buckeyes ranking fourth in Offensive SP+ and first in scoring offense (46.5 PPG). Even though standout receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba has only played in a handful of games, Ohio State has still thrived thanks to its deep receiver pool. Marvin Harrison Jr. has 65 receptions for 1,037 yards and 11 touchdowns, while Emeka Egbuka has 57 catches for 914 yards and eight TDs.
TreVeyon Henderson returned from an injury last week against Maryland, and he wasn't as effective as he usually is with the ball in his hands. Henderson carried the ball 11 times for 19 yards, so he might not be much of a factor for Ohio State on Saturday. Leading rusher Miyan Williams didn't play last week due to a lower leg injury, so freshman Dallan Hayden might be the top option at running back for the Buckeyes. Hayden has run for 503 yards and five touchdowns this season.
Ohio State currently ranks 10th in Defensive SP+. Defensive coordinator Jim Knowles has turned this unit around after a down 2021 campaign, and the Buckeyes are allowing just 16.9 PPG and 4.3 yards per play. They have 31 sacks on the season, and unlike Michigan, they have been able to force turnovers.