(3)Michigan @ (2)Ohio State
(Favorite: Ohio State - 6 1/2)
Lori Schmidt (97.1 the Fan): Thanks for asking me to be part of this. It's hard to know what to expect this week when we aren't sure if quarterback Wilton Speight will play, and--if he does play--if he'll be 100 percent. John O'Korn was impressive before transferring from Houston, but Jim Harbaugh did not seem to have much faith in him last week vs. Indiana. It's possible to overstate the effect of this, though, because Michigan's offense this season has been built around the run and its committee of running backs. Still considering Ohio State is allowing an average of fewer than 120 rushing yards per game, I really can't see the Wolverines scoring a whole bunch of points. Meanwhile, the Ohio State offense should be buoyed by the fact that they're playing at home, and the winds (seemingly the team's greatest nemesis) aren't expected to exceed 10 miles per hour. No Big Ten quarterback has rushed for more than 24 yards against Michigan this season. Expect that stat to go way by the wayside. Ohio State 21-Michigan 10
Bbaver: 'THE' pick: Ohio State - Too many pessimists that I have heard from this week; OSU talent > UM talent; Urban > Hairball; Bucks have owned the series for a decade and a half; OSU at home; mild weather expected; going against Urban in a big game? No thanks. Ohio State 27 Michigan 17
Cory: The game this year is almost as big as it was in 2006. The implications, are huge. The winner of Michigan-Ohio State on Saturday stands a good chance at getting into the playoff. Urban Meyer has fared well so far against Michigan, but this year's Wolverines team is much better than any he's faced before. The big question for Michigan is: Which quarterback plays? Wilton Speight's injury is to his non-throwing shoulder, and he has practiced this week. However, if he does go he'll be less than 100 percent. I believe Speight plays, but expect a heavy dose of throwback screens, mixed in with a lot of DeVeon Smith. Throwback screens have hurt Ohio State badly before, so it will be interesting to see if the Buckeyes are ready for them this week. Michigan features two of the top cornerbacks in the country, so throwing the ball will be difficult for J.T. Barrett. The difference in this game will be the three-headed monster in the running game of Barrett, Mike Weber, and Curtis Samuel. Buckeye fans might roll their eyes at the playcalling again this week, but at this point the only thing that matters is the W. Ohio State 28, Michigan 24
Dave: Ohio State 32 - Xichigan 25
Gregg: For me, the fate of the Buckeyes could not be any more clear. Today they are #2 in the playoff poll. If they win, it will not matter if they play for the Big 10 championship or not. There is no one in the playoff hunt that has a chance to play a better game than OSU defeating Michigan. If those teams are not ahead of the Buckeyes now, they can't pass them, even with a conference championship win. End of story, so let's go and just enjoy this game for what it really is ... two rivals battling to the bitter end. Sounds like the weather is not expected to be a factor which favors OSU. Regardless of who is the signal caller for Michigan, the Buckeyes will have the better player behind center. Urban knows how to get the team ready for big games and this is probably his biggest regular season game since coming to Columbus. I think it will be close the the vest for the first quarter but look for Ohio State to pull away in the 2nd quarter and not look back. Then we can all go home and cheer on Sparty! Ohio State 31 TBGUN 13
Jason: The game all of Columbus, Ann Arbor and the majority of the college football world has been waiting for gets underway this Saturday in the Horseshoe. A lot on the line for the 2nd ranked Buckeyes and 3rd ranked Wolverines as this match up is essentially a playoff quarterfinal. A Michigan win, secures them a berth in Indianapolis for the Big Ten Championship. A Buckeye win, and they need the Spartans to upset Penn State in Happy Valley to make the trip to Indy, but short of that, they should secure a spot in the College Football Playoff for the 2nd time in 3 years. The Buckeyes have essentially got it rolling, despite a hard fought win in what can be easily described as horrendous weather conditions last week in East Lansing. JT Barrett has thrown 7 TD passes without a pick in the last three games, and when the passing game struggled last week, he toted the rock for over 100 yards. The Buckeyes offense has become a three headed monster. In addition to Barrett, Mike Weber became only the 3rd Buckeye freshman to eclipse the 1,000 yard mark last week at Michigan State. If you can slow those two, explosive do-it-all junior Curtis Samuel is just as dangerous, with the ability to break one at any time by virtue of the run or catching the ball out of the slot. The Wolverines are coming off a struggle as well, with backup QB, John O’Korn filling in for the injured Wilson Speight, who despite reports that he has been ‘practicing’ doesn’t figure to play in this one. However, RB, De’Veon Smith carried the Wolverines a week ago, rushing for 15 yards which included 2 long TD’s late to give Michigan the win over Indiana. This will be a matchup of statistically the two best offenses and defenses in the conference and the country. There is nothing in this game that leads me to believe that it won’t be anything but a defensive struggle and Ohio Stadium will be electric. If Ohio State can grab some momentum early, the Wolverines could be in for a long afternoon. But I expect a four quarter battle with defenses ruling the day, but in the end, Ohio State just has too much athleticism on both sides of the ball, and will force O’Korn to make plays under pressure which plays into a very opportunistic defense. Ohio State pull out a tough, hard fought victory and claims another pair of gold pants. Ohio State 24 – Michigan 13
Joe-S-U: Ohio State over Michigan - The weather looks like it shouldn't spook the play-callers, but this is gonna be a Tresselball slugfest. I just don't see the coaching staff turning it loose. TBGUN is hampered at QB and the game's here so the Bucks get it done and then see how the chips fall.
John: Looking at the total body of work, I think the edge goes to Ohio State. They are the more battle tested of the two teams. UM has played almost all of their big games at home, the exception being Michigan State. OSU has played almost all of their big games on the road, the exception being Nebraska. The only game UM faced any adversity, they lost. Ohio State has won tough games in Madison and East Lansing. If this one is close in the fourth quarter that experience will make the difference. Ohio State 31, Michigan 21
Josh: I am so happy that we are at this point, but also sad because this season has gone so fast. We are finally at The Game. Both teams did not play like they have been last week, and Harbaugh is playing games in trying to fool us into think Speight will play, and O'Korn did as much as we would expect from someone who has not played in a while and in the snow. I think each team will be more of themselves this week as I am sure they have been holding back, but I think the difference in this game will be JT Barrett. I think our passing game will be much better, and Barrett will make the plays to attack the tough defense of Michigan. With this week and game meaning so much, this is when we trust in Urban. I know he will have something up his sleeve for this one, and we will make a statement for the committee. Michigan might try and give us some wrinkles, but I know that we will come out on top. Ohio State 42 - Michigan 20
Dr. Mark: OSU 27-17- My same concerns still remain, too many QB runs up the middle and conservative play calling - many people believe part of offense has been saved for this game- not sure I can believe it myself - receivers have to create space.
PJSBuck: This Game, once again (and FINALLY), is for all the marbles - as it should be and as it is written in the Bible. I fully expect Speight to start (not sure he was even REALLY hurt). Harbaugh was a sleaze when he played for TBGUN and continues to be a sleaze. I wouldn't put it past him to fake the injury just to mess with us. Anyway, conspiracy theories aside, this is one GOOD team we will face Saturday. IF, we offensively scheme and play-call like we did against MSU and Penn State, I will be watching the History Channel early. Does anyone else think our offensive coaching is a disgrace?? And while I LOVE JT, he SEEMS to be getting worse, not better = how does THAT even happen??? Urban gets the team and coaches in the right frame of mind for big games so I am going forward based on that premise. I expect a defensive struggle - just like so many past Michigan Games. Harbaugh is much more of a gunslinger but I expect even him to be cautious Saturday. Here goes: I expect a fairly low scoring game marked with a few key turnovers and big-time defensive heroics. Prediction: Ohio State 27 TBGUN 24 in a last minute thriller. TEAR DOWN THE GOAL POSTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Pia Pete: GO BUCKS! OSU 31 – TBGUN 17
Coach Rick: The game of games and this year it is going to be better than ever. There are a couple of unknowns for me in this game. Is Michigan going to get its quarterback back in the line up? Have the last couple of games both teams played results of looking ahead to this game? As if stands, I think Michigan is one sided and we have seen what happens when you put all of your eggs in one player. I have OSU winning by 17 in this game mainly for the unknown of the quarterback playing.
Steven: Either this one will be another nail-biter or we’ll just crush them like Gummi Bears under shiny red cleats. I much prefer the latter. I know we’ve had trouble with backup QBs in the past, (see last year’s MSU game), but this one feels different. It has to. This is The Game. If the OC who shall not be named can remember we have guys like Samuel and Weber available to us, and stop relying solely on JT, we’ll be fine. We must control the line of scrimmage on offense. I have no doubt that our d-line is up to the task on the other side. O’Korn will meet the Rushmen so much they may give him an honorary pledge pin. I like OSU big, (but then again, who doesn’t?) Bucks 42-17
Trout: The big game is here. Both teams have a great chance of getting into the playoffs with a victory. This should be a good game. Although Michigan's quarterback situation is still an unknown, they are a good team. Peppers is an all around great football player, and he will most likely play his heart out in this game. While Ohio State, with Barrett, Samuel, and Weber leading the offense, has the potential to put up a lot of points. Also the defense of the Buckeyes has be stout all year. The game will be close. Although maybe not as epic as 2006, there is a chance this game comes down to the last seconds. Looking at both teams as objectively as I can, I think the Bucks have he edge. Even though they haven't look great in some games this year, when they are on their game, they are almost unbeatable. Buckeyes should win this game by a touchdown, and just about cement their place in the College Football Playoff. (Ohio State, 38-31)
---------------------------------- FORMER BUCKEYES ----------------------------------
Vaughn Broadnax: There is no way I would ever pick against the Buckeyes. When it’s against the Wolverines I can even imagine losing. Buckeyes win 35-17
Bam Childress: Ohio State wins by 10
James Cotton: Ohio State 24 - Michigan 13
Cornelius Green: Ohio State
Final Score: Ohio State 30 Michigan 27 2OT