Ohio St USC

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This was expected to one of the marquee matchups of the season and it should still be. However, the majority of the sports “experts” expect USC to blow out the Buckeyes just because Ohio State didn’t roll over the Bobcats of Ohio last Saturday.

The Ohio State Buckeyes have outscored their opponents 69 to 14 in the first two weeks. What is wrong with that? All of this talk of “pony” formations with Beanie and Saine in the backfield at the same time hasn’t even been seen this year (even before beanie got hurt in the YSU Game) we’re thinking it’s coming on Saturday Night.

Anyone who watched these Games closely can tell that Tressel kept the playbook completely closed and ran just basic stuff, he is not stupid and has learned from the last 2 BCS title Games

This team will come out FIRED UP Saturday. Beanie will be in there and ready to go which will give the team a big boost (the offensive line seems to not play as well when beanie is not in the Game) And the playbook will finally come open.

When the Ohio State-USC Game kicks off, the Buckeyes will have a total of 35 players with at least one Game of starting experieNCe. Tops among those are: James LAurinaitis (28); Malcolm Jenkins (28); Marcus Freeman (26); Alex Boone (25); Steve Rehring (25); Rory Nicol (24) and Donald Washington (22). First-time starters in 2008: OT Bryant Browning, DB Jermale Hines, LB Ross Homan, FB Brandon Smith, and TB Maurice Wells.

The USC Trojans have only played one Game and it was against a rebuilding Virginia team and obviously unranked. Mark SaNChez knows what’s coming tonight. He also knows his older, wiser receiving corps is ready for it.

USC’s quarterback expects Ohio State to play a wider variety of pass defenses than Virginia, which mostly used a conservative zone that SaNChez picked apart in the top-ranked Trojans’ 52-7 season-opening victory Aug. 30. The No. 5 Buckeyes mix zones with man-to-man coverage, the latter their defense of choice when blitzing. And they blitz a lot.

Ohio State is 6-1 against the spread the last 7 times they have been an underdog of 8 or more while USC is 10-10 against the number as favs of 8 or more. Let’s not forget that even last season in a year that saw the Trojans win 11 Games, they lost to Stanford and Oregon and had 7 point wins or less against Cal, Washington and Arizona. Ohio State catching USC at the right time……early. This one is closer than the experts think.

Pick: Ohio State +11.5



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