Brandon Zimmerman’s reign of terror is over.
After coming closest to the actual score for four weeks in a row, Brandon missed the Michigan State score by a couple touchdowns. The King is dead (or at least a loser), long live the King.
In this case, the King is either Tony Gerdeman or myself. We both nailed OSU’s exact point total against MSU (34). Gerd had the Spartans losing 34-7, while I had it 34-3. Some might claim that 7 is closer to 10 than 3 is, but it’s enough of a gray area that we can just agree to disagree.
Either way, you should definitely listen to The Buckeye Weekly Podcast, because we are geniuses and experts.
This week, there is serious disagreement among our staff. Will the Buckeyes beat Northwestern by a lot?
Perhaps they’ll embarrass them by more than that?
Some bold staffers think the Buckeyes may humiliate the Wildcats by an even more galling margin!
Who’s right? There’s only one way to find out.
[We added a few posters from The-Ozone forum to the list of predictors as well. You can find their picks at the bottom.]
Having watched Northwestern as much as I could stand, I don’t see much hope for the Wildcats in this one. They do have a very good defense, but their offense is entirely underwhelming.
If you couldn’t tell, I try not to be a pessimist when it comes to Ohio State football. I don’t care if the (insert year of past Buckeye team here) struggled in the second half against Northwestern when these current players were around five years old. I watch the current team and I make predications based off of what I watch.
With all of that said, I fully acknowledge that Ohio State should completely dominate Northwestern on uhhhh <checks schedule> uh Friday night but I’m a little pessimistic this week. I think the Buckeye players have Wisconsin circled on that calendar next week even if they say they don’t. It would be hard not to. The game probably won’t be close at all but the Buckeyes are going to look sloppy while winning this game. They’ll probably drop in the polls but just remember polls are dumb.
I’d be very surprised if the offense looks as crisp as we have seen it in games past. I see JK Dobbins carrying the load and having a pretty good day. Defensively, I think we will once again see Chase Young and Jashon Cornell shut down the run game while the DBs get a few interceptions.
Ohio State 27, Northwestern 6
Another night game, on the road, on a Friday night. This game is weird and normally that would lead me to believe that Ohio State could fall into a trap game…but not this week.
After reaching the Big Ten Championship game last year, Northwestern has been somewhat disappointing so far this season and they have struggled to get things done offensively. Ohio State, on the other hand, has been significantly better overall but especially on the defensive side of the ball. The Buckeyes are also coming off of their first bye week. They had a lot of time to work and improve without having to prepare for a game but also rest their bodies before some tough games ahead. This should be an easy game for Ohio State but they can’t get caught looking ahead to Wisconsin next week.
I’m predicting the Buckeye backups to gain some playing time and experience and I think this game will be over pretty early on.
Ohio State 42, Northwestern 6
Based on how Northwestern played Ohio State last year in The B1G Championship Game, I believed Northwestern was going to be a more challenging opponent coming into this season. Those beliefs were dramatically changed as the 2019 season has progressed, as Northwestern is faltering offensively, while Ohio State’s defense has completely changed from the unit that was routinely giving up big plays last season. The Northwestern Wildcats seem to be suffering from the lack of development by Hunter Johnson at the quarterback position – after losing Clayton Thorson this offseason, the thought of landing a one-time 5 star recruit had to be somewhat reassuring, and Johnson’s lackluster play at quarterback has truly handicapped the offense.
It’s the seventh game, middle of October, conference road matchup against a well coached, if undermanned, team.
Northwestern has seen 6 games of tape so they know what to expect and how to counter. OSU just wants to keep winning and any victory against a conference foe, at night, away from home is a good one.
Logic says 31-14 is a successful night. But I think these Buckeyes know that there are other teams out there with gaudy scores, dominating stats, and marquee victories. They play driven and inspired and take the Wildcats to the woodshed.
Going against everything I believe about road conference night games against well coached teams, I take Ohio State 54, Northwestern 6.