The 2013 Big 10 Championship Game from Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, IN features the 2nd ranked Ohio St. Buckeyes (12-0) take on the 10th ranked Spartans of Michigan St. (11-1) with a potential BCS National Championship Game berth on the line for OSU. The Buckeyes outlasted their archrival Michigan in Ann Arbor last week by a score of 42-41, while the Spartans grinded out another tough win with a 14-3 victory over Minnesota. MSU is playing for a spot in the Rose Bowl, which they have not participated in since 1988. The Spartans have won 8 games in a row since losing 17-14 at Notre Dame in week 4, to earn their second berth in the Big Ten title game in the last three years.
OSU has one of the top offenses in the country, averaging 48.2 points a game to rank 3rd in the country and 530.5 yards to rank 6th nationally. Quarterback Braxton MIller is a dual threat with 1,759 yards passing, 65.7 percent passing completion, 21 TDs passing, QB rating of 164.3, 891 yards rushing, 6.8 yards per carry and 8 more TDs on the ground.OSU ranks 30th among FBS teams in total defense with 355.8 YPG allowed and 18th nationally in scoring defense with 20.3 PPG allowed.
The Legends Division-champion Spartans are 1st among FBS teams in total defense with 237.7 yards per game and ranked 4th in scoring defense with 11.8 points per game allowed. MSU’s run defense is also tops in the nation with a scant 64.8 YPG and 2.23 yards per carry allowed. The Spartans rank 84th in total offense with 380.2 yards per game and 63rd in scoring offense with 29.4 points per game. Quarterback Connor Cook has thrown for 2,119 yards with 17 TDS and 4 INTs this season, while running back Jeremy Langford has run for 1,210 yards with 16 scores.
Ohio St. vs. Michigan St. Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Ohio St. Buckeyes -5
@ Michigan St. Spartans +5
Over 53.5 (-110)
Under 53.5 (-110)
Betting odds taken from Bovada.lv
Ohio St. vs Michigan St. Pick
Ohio St. has won 24 straight games with all of those games of course coming during the regular season as the Buckeyes were on probation last season and did not participate in a bowl game. The Under is 4-1 in the last 5 meetings between the two teams head-to-head and is 5-0 in Buckeyes last 5 neutral site games. MSU is 7-1-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
The Spartans have a ball-hawking defense with a rank of 17th in the nation with 16 interceptions on the year. Add in their 11 fumble recoveries this season, and the defense has created 27 turnovers in 12 games. That makes them easily the best defense the OSU has faced all season, and MIller and company will not find the track nearly as fast as they did last week against Michigan. MSU QB Connor Cook should have success against a Buckeyes secondary that is giving up an average of 255.8 pass yards per game.Their secondary is ranked 98th in the nation in pass yards allowed per game and has given up 23 touchdowns through the air over 12 games. The superior defense of the Spartans and the suspect OSU secondary is enough to tilt the scales in favor of taking the Spartans in this game. Take MSU and the points in what will be a very entertaining and hard-hitting Big 10 Championship Game.