Ohio State vs. Michigan pick, prediction, odds for The Game on FOX

With the Ohio State vs. Michigan odds at -8, let's make a pick and prediction for The Game -- one of the greatest rivalries in football.

Ohio State vs. Michigan isn’t just a game. It’s The Game. Their rivalry is perhaps the pinnacle of college football rivalry week. After a year away and with a place in the Big Ten Championship Game on the line, the rivalry further intensifies this weekend. So, who will emerge victorious from the 117th edition of The Game? Let’s take a look at the current odds and provide an Ohio State vs. Michigan pick and prediction.

Ohio State vs. Michigan pick, prediction, odds | The Game

  • Spread: Ohio State -8 (Odds from DraftKings Sportsbook)
  • Moneyline: Ohio State -300, Michigan +245
  • Over/Under: 64.5

Looking to make some bucks off the Buckeyes this weekend? Thinking that maybe the Wolverines can make you wealthy? If you’re looking to make a little money predicting the future, it’s worth considering the past before you lay down your hard-earned cash.

After obliterating a Michigan State team that beat the Wolverines earlier this season, it’s no surprise that the Buckeyes are an early favorite for this Ohio State vs. Michigan matchup. Betting trends are firmly in their favor, too. Away favorites are 178-78 (69.5%) in the 2021 college football season. My money is on an Ohio State win, for reasons we’ll get to shortly.

Betting trends

Betting on Ohio State vs. Michigan against the spread is a less straightforward situation. Home underdogs, like Michigan are in The Game, are a marginal favorite in terms of covering the spread. Furthermore, Michigan has covered the spread in nine of their 11 games. Ohio State has been less successful, with a spread record of 6-4-1. That said, 31 of the Buckeyes’ 51 wins over Michigan have eclipsed the 8-point spread.

The explosive nature of the Buckeyes’ offense may make hammering the over seem obvious for Ohio State vs. Michigan. The last two editions of The Game tallied 83 and 101 points. However, buyer beware. Ohio State is only 6-5 versus the over this season, and Michigan is 5-6. Furthermore, the Buckeyes have failed to hit the over in three of their last four games this season.

Ohio State vs. Michigan prediction

So who is going to win the 117th edition of one of college football’s biggest rivalries? Having started the season under pressure, you could argue that Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh has the best opportunity of his Wolverines tenure to secure the win that has come to define his time as Michigan head coach.

This is arguably the best team that Harbaugh has marched into battle against the Buckeyes. In Aidan Hutchinson and David Ojabo, they have one of the most dominant DE duos in the nation.

Between them, they’ve tallied 20 sacks and 21.5 tackles for loss. With a next-level playmaker in the secondary in the form of Daxton Hill, the Wolverines’ defense has allowed just 178.4 passing yards per game.

Furthermore, the Wolverines have found an identity on offense. Behind an offensive line that earned Joe Moore Award recognition, Michigan has one of the most potent ground games in the nation, averaging 218.36 yards per game. Hassan Haskins has broken the 1,000-yard mark for the first time in his career. To supplement the ground game, Cade McNamara has proven an efficient and reliable passer.

Buckeyes have become a bulldozer and a roadblock

If this game had been earlier in the season, Michigan would have trampled all over Ohio State in the same way that Oregon did. However, this Ohio State team isn’t the same team that lost to the Ducks in Week 2. The Buckeyes that will line up for this 117th edition of Ohio State vs. Michigan has become a bulldozer on offense and a roadblock on defense.

A fully healthy C.J. Stroud has emerged as a genuine Heisman Trophy contender. With Chris Olave, Garrett Wilson, and Jaxon Smith-Njiba, they have a wide receiver room that wouldn’t be out of place in the NFL. Furthermore, the Buckeyes have one of the most explosive running backs in the nation in TreVeyon Henderson.

As a result, they rank first in scoring offense with 47.2 points per game and lead the way in total offense with 559.5 yards per game. The defense that was a liability to start the season now ranks 16th in scoring defense and, critically for this game, 11th in rush defense. Everything is coming together at the right time for the Buckeyes, and that could spell a ninth consecutive defeat for the Wolverines in this Ohio State vs. Michigan rivalry.

Ohio State vs. Michigan Prediction: Buckeyes 34, Wolverines 28


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