Even an injury to starting quarterback Robert Marve, who transferred in from Miami (FL), hasn’t derailed the Boilermakers season yet. Rob Henry has stepped in and done admirably, leading the team to an upset win over Northwestern and Minnesota in their Big 10 home opener. But, the real quest begins now, as the Boilermakers will be up against an angry and disappointed Ohio State team. The Buckeyes are coming off of a 31-18 beat down at the hands of Big 10 rivals Wisconsin. They trailed 21-3 at halftime and never looked like they would get back in it. This week, the Buckeyes (6-1) will look to get back on track. Something that stuck out last week, which the Buckeyes will try to correct, is their offense, notably their rushing attack. They ran the ball 41 times, only twice less than Wisconsin—a team known for pounding the ball— but could only muster 155 yards. If the Buckeyes can improve on that number then they can put their Wisconsin troubles behind them in this Noon ET kickoff from Columbus.
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If there have been bright spots for Purdue (4-2) this year, it has been the surprise play of Henry. He’s only a freshman but he has done outstanding since being thrown into the fire in the wake of the Marve injury. Case in point: last week he accounted for four touchdowns in his Ross-Ade Stadium debut. But, it did mirror some offensive inefficiency: Henry only threw for 163 yards and if there is any chance for Purdue (22.5 point underdogs) to pull off the upset than it will have to improve that number.
It was suppose to be another Big 10 championship year for the Buckeyes. And, it still could be. But, the task is awfully daunting now that they have a loss in the conference under their belts. It all went wrong last week but the Buckeyes have plenty to play for and this Purdue team is 73rd in the country in pass defense. If Terrell Pryor is given time—assuming his lineman block Purdue’s All-American candidate Ryan Kerrigan—then Buckeye wide out Dane Sanzenbacher, amongst others, could be in for a big afternoon.
Purdue vs. Ohio State Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Purdue Boilermakers +24
@ Ohio State Buckeyes -24
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Purdue vs. Ohio State Betting Predictions for Week 8:
Spread Prediction (TOP PLAY) – True freshman quarterbacks don’t go on the road and win in the Big 10—usually. Rob Henry did it in his first try when Purdue won at Northwestern two weeks ago. But, there will be a real atmosphere here. There will be a capacity crowd cheering against him and it is only right to expect him to get rattled. The Buckeyes will come into the game fired up and eager to make up for the wrong they did last week. The Bucks should be able to start moving the ball at will against a Purdue team that lost to Toledo—who was promptly crushed by Boise State the following week. If Ohio State comes out, as they should, look for them to do enough to get past Purdue in convincing fashion.
Game Total Prediction –Ohio State really has an outstanding defense. It may not have been on display at its best last week in Madison, but they have speed, strength and toughness. Fruition should come this week when Purdue rolls into town. The Under is 5-1 in Purdue’s last six games on Field Turf while the Buckeyes are 3-0-1 for the Under in their last four conference games, and their last four October games. With that said, take the under.
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