The No. 4-ranked Buckeyes (4-0, 1-0) have been installed as the favorite for their trip this Saturday to face No. 9 Penn State (4-0, 1-0) in State College. Currently, Ohio State is a 3.5-point favorite over the Nittany Lions.
The home team is 4-1 against the spread in the last five meetings.
That is not the only trend that should be concerning to Buckeye fans. Ohio State is just 1-4 against the spread in their last five games when they’ve scored more than 40 points in their previous game. They are also 1-4 against the spread following games that they’ve won by more than 20 points.
Penn State, meanwhile, is 6-0 against the spread at home when facing teams with a winning road record.
They are 11-3-2 against the spread in their last 16 home games.
The Buckeyes have been favored over the Nittany Lions the last five seasons and have covered just twice.
This will be the first time Penn State is a home underdog since the last time Ohio State came to town in 2016. The No. 2 Buckeyes were 19-point favorites and lost to the Nittany Lions 24-21.
In 2014, the No. 13 Buckeyes were 14-point favorites, but it took two overtimes for the eventual National Champs to get out of Happy Valley alive.
In 2012, it was a pick’em game, with Ohio State coming out on top with a 35-23 victory.
This Saturday’s game could very well be the Big Ten East Championship Game, and whoever wins it will have the upper hand in the division for the foreseeable future.