Illinois @ (9)Ohio State
(Favorite: Ohio State - 40 1/2)
Bbaver: The Pick: Ohio State - #1 goal is to stay healthy. This is a very bad Illinois team, and I am not sure Lovie is the answer there. Will Urban want to tack on late scores for good measure to impress the committee? JT's last game as a Buckeye. It's been a great 15 year run for him. : ) Buckeyes roll, as expected.
Cory: This is a game that Ohio State should win. Not only is it a game that Ohio State should win, but it's one where the Buckeyes should cruise. The Illini are not a good team. Under second-year coach Lovie Smith, Illinois is just 2-8 this season with those two wins coming over Ball State and Western Kentucky at the beginning of the season. The big problem for Illinois this season has been on offense. The Illini have just 1,078 rushing yards this season - compared to 2,453 for Ohio State - and when it comes to passing, Illinois quarterbacks have combined through 17 interceptions with just eight touchdowns. As for Ohio State, the Buckeyes just need to avoid another Iowa letdown. The Buckeyes looked good in all phases of the game against Michigan State last week, so perhaps Urban Meyer's message of the team having a "laser-like focus" is finally getting through. Illinois has been close to a Big Ten win a few times this season, so the Illini may keep it close for a little bit, but expect Ohio State to pull away in the second half. Ohio State 45, Illinois 13
Gregg: Does anyone remember when Coach Cooper started out 0-5 against Illinois before he finally cracked the win column? Are you going to forget the name Juice Williams anytime soon? What about the game up in Champaign a couple years ago when OSU only competed one pass the entire game? Well this is not those Fighting Illini teams. The Buckeyes are going to run and run a lot. They are going to pass and pass a lot. They are going to score and score a lot. Illlinios, not so much, and this may be the last game in the 'shoe for Lovie Smith on the Illinois sideline, but time will tell. I wish this game was at noon instead of 3:30, but I guess we will all have to wait an extra 3 and a half hours to pick up the win that may put us in Indy. Ohio State 52 Illinois 7
Jason: One of the longest standing rivalries in the Big Ten renews acquaintances in Columbus on Saturday as Illinois invades Ohio Stadium. The illustrious wooden turtle named Illibuck is on the line. Ohio State is coming off a thrashing of Michigan State a week ago doing the majority of their damage on the ground, rushing for 335 yards, led by Mike Weber with 162 and J.K. Dobbins with 124. The much-maligned Buckeye defense stymied the powerful Spartan attack holding Michigan State to just under 200 yards total for the entire game. The Illini come in as big underdogs and without a conference win. Coach Lovie Smith will make his first trip back to the Horseshoe since coaching DB’s under John Cooper in 1995. The Illini lost to Indiana a week ago but QB Jeff George Jr was able to throw for 261 yards and two touches but was also picked off twice and lost a fumble. George is the 3rd signal caller that the Illini has turned to this season as the struggles have been well documented, ranking 91stin passing in college football. They have not run it very well either, ranking 121st in that department. If you think it gets better on the other side of the ball, then you would be sadly mistaken. The Illini D rank 74thin the country in total yards allowed. Bottom line is that this game is a total mismatch, as the 41-point spread would indicate. The Buckeyes just put up 48 against a top five defense, what do we expect them to do to a defense that surrenders over 400 yards per game? Look for the pound and ground game again from Ohio State as they look to keep the momentum heading into the big one with the school up north in a week. This one will get out of hand early as the Buckeyes will severely outman and outclass Illinois start to finish. Bucks win big. Ohio State 63 Illinois 0
John: I’ll admit it, crow tastes pretty good. For the second week in a row, we got a result out of Ohio State that I don’t think anyone saw coming. The difference, this time the surprise was good. Unfortunately, it make the Iowa debacle that much harder to swallow. Now to the topic at hand: No two ways about it – Illinois is as rotten as last month’s fish. Jeff George Jr. (who may not even play) a’int his daddy, and Dick Butkis today at age 102, or whatever, would be an upgrade to the Ilini defense. Vegas has the line at 41. Unless the cold front gets here too soon, look for OSU to put up 35 or so in the first half, pull the starters after the first series or two in quarter three, engage the cruise control and roll. Bucks keep the little wooden turtle. Ohio State 59 Illinois 7
jOShUa: Ohio State needs to figure out what team it wants to be. To have them do what they did against Michigan State is upsetting, and seeing that Iowa was shut out offensively by Wisconsin just makes the loss sting a little more. That being said, there is a small chance Ohio State maked the playoff if Alabama, Oklahom and Miami win out, but I think we need to focus on the Big Ten. I saw the initial spread for the game is 38 points, which I think even with that high of a spread, the Buckeyes should cover. Ohio State will also know the fate of the Big Ten East prior to this game depending on the Wisconsin vs Michigan game outcome. This one will be slightly emotional for our 5th year seniors, including Big Ten and School record holder JT Barrett, who will be playing his final home game. In a lot of ways, his career has been polarizing, however it is hard to deny we have watched a legend for the past few years. Ohio State rolls and keeps the Illibuck in Columbus for another season and prepare for The Game. Ohio State 56 - Illinois 3
Dr. Mark: Ohio State 44-10 - OSU has to win out and win well to have any chance to move up if others lose. Style points matter now. D cannot give up big points to lesser talent- But I feel compelled to say this - Although they have played poorly during two losses, I think its sad for people to say if Buckeyes end up 12-2 but don't make the playoffs , that the season was a failure.
PJSBuck: This is NOT a trap-game, so don't even think about it. Even IF we play poorly, we still win and win BIG. I HOPE this will be a tune-up for TBGUN next week. It's hard to find something nice to say (with sincerity) about the Illinois program this year other than they are playing a lot of young players with POTENTIAL. I think it was Chuck Knox of the old Pittsburgh Steelers who said POTENTIAL gets coaches fired. Prediction: Seniors go out in a blaze of glory by 55 to 9 - bring on the bad guys next week!
Pia Pete: OSU takes care of business. OSU 54 – Illini 9
Coach Rick: This will not be a good game. OSU will win by a lot as they continue their running game.
Steven: Let the bludgeoning begin! OSU 49-10.
Trout: Ohio State will win this game. The Fighting Illini are a very bad team and don't stand a chance against the Buckeyes. I see both Dobbins and Weber getting over 100 yards and JT having another stellar game. I don't see this game being remotely close. Illinois has regressed as a football team. They have never been a powerhouse, but were always competitive. However in the last few years, they have turned into a joke of a team. The Buckeyes will handle Illinois much like they did with Sparty last week. Bucks win the wooden turtle. (Ohio State, 63-7)
Vaughn (1980-83): Since my wife is an Illini grad I will give her 3 points. Lovie Smith gets ran 50-3.
Rod Gerald (1975-78): Better place an APB & look out for former Chicago Bear head coach Lovie Smith & his team. The game was 7767367310 ect. The Buckeyes scored early and often & so we suggested they find them. Asap fighting Illlini understood every player in there.was history of team following a conservative guy and will not ever would that once and twice. Give me a Go Bucks! After the Buckeyes victory from the struggling 2 win Illini, out of respect for the Ghost. Running backs can be a problem. Urban Meyer's buckeyes own 3 terrific backs to go with senior captain QB. JT Barrett. The Buckeyes defense returns LB's Booker 17 and Jerome Baker #33. On offense JT & company will, score, score and score. Running the ball gets Buckeye Nation the chance to see Hastings and Burrows at quarterback. Bucks 57 Illini-24
Final Score: Ohio State 52 Illinois 14