College Football Week 6 Predictions: Ohio State Buckeyes vs. Northwestern Wildcats

Ohio State Buckeyes vs. Northwestern Wildcats
Saturday, 10/5/13, 8:00 PM EST
Opening Point Spread:  Ohio State -4
Current Betting Line:  Ohio State -7
Opening Total:  58
Current Total:  59
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Ohio State Buckeyes have won 28 of their L29 games against the Northwestern Wildcats
The Ohio State Buckeyes have won 28 of their L29 games against the Northwestern Wildcats

Ohio State enters the game with the nation’s longest winning streak at 17 games, as it hits the road after picking up a 31-24 victory over the Wisconsin Badgers as seven-point home favorites last Saturday, while going UNDER the betting total of 56.  The Buckeyes have won 28 of the last 29 meetings in this series, which is important to consider when making your college football predictions in Week 6.  Offensively, the team leads the Big Ten and ranks sixth in the NCAA in scoring by averaging 48.2 points per game, while outscoring foes by a 216-21 margin in the first quarter.  Ohio State is 6-2 SU and 5-3 ATS in October the last two-plus seasons, with the OVER going 5-3 in that situation.

The Buckeyes make a lot of headlines due to their offense led by the likes of quarterback Braxton Miller, but the defense deserves to share in the team’s success under head coach Urban Meyer.  Ohio State’s stop unit is led by All-Big Ten junior linebacker Ryan Shazier—allowing opponents to gain just 84.5 yards per game on the ground.  The program is also a dominating 20-10 in games that ESPN’s College GameDay is on site, including a 7-5 mark on the road.

Northwestern opens conference play in a major spotlight, as it prepares to play one of the top teams in the country on Homecoming weekend at Ryan Field.  The Wildcats are aiming for their fourth 5-0 start under head coach Pat Fitzgerald, while their offense has scored at least 30 points in six straight games dating back to last season.  Importantly enough, the team has forced 11 turnovers, which has led directly to 59 points.  Northwestern is 2-8 SU and 5-5 ATS as underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points the last two-plus seasons.

The Wildcats are a dangerous underdog in this spot when looking over the NCAA football betting lines, as they retained all nine of their assistant coaches for a second straight offseason.  Northwestern is also one of five FBS programs whose offensive and defensive coordinators are in at least their sixth season at the school.  The team currently ranks 11th nationally in completion percentage at 71.9 and sits 23rd in passing efficiency at 158.15.

Sports bettors will likely play the total in this affair, as the OVER is 5-0 in the Wildcats’ last five games following a bye week.

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