Ohio State vs. Penn State Prediction, Odds, Spread and Over/Under for College Football Week 9

Oct 22, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA;  Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) throws during
Oct 22, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) throws during / Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

The Big Ten game of the week goes down in Happy Valley on Saturday when No. 2 Ohio State travels to take on No. 13 Penn State.

The Buckeyes have emerged as the most complete team in the country but haven't been challenged all that much this season. Will Penn State pose a threat to Ohio State and Heisman Trophy favorite C.J. Stroud's undefeated record, or will the team struggle against another elite foe like they did against Michigan two weeks ago?

Let's break down all the angles for this Big Ten matchup on Saturday afternoon:

Ohio State vs. Penn State Odds, Spread and Total

Ohio State vs. Penn State Betting Trends

  • Ohio State is 9-3-1 against the spread (ATS) as a road favorite in Big Ten play
  • Penn State is 0-1 ATS as an underdog
  • Penn State is 4-5 as a home underdog under James Franklin
  • Both teams are 5-2 to the OVER

Ohio State vs. Penn State Prediction and Pick

I discussed this game with Ben Heisler on The Early Reed on Tuesday, but I'm going to be playing the under in this one.

I think Ohio State is far superior in this one, but I'm not interested in laying north of two touchdowns on the Buckeyes, but I'd rather focus on the team's defense. The Buckeyes are top five nationally in yards per play allowed and should overwhelm sixth year quarterback Sean Clifford.

I believe that Nittany Lions head coach knows that Clifford can't out-duel Stroud and the Ohio State offense that is first in yards per play, and he is going to opt to keep this game on the ground and take the air out of the ball. Franklin is going to try and limit possessions for the Buckeyes offense and potential mistakes for Clifford to make.

Penn State's strength on defense is in the secondary, top 20 in EPA/Play in the passing game, and they thrive when their backs are against the wall, top five in the country in red zone touchdown allowed percentage. The Nittany Lions have been great at forcing field goals when team's get inside the 20.

I don't trust the Penn State offense to put up points, but I believe their defense can keep a lid on the OSU offense to a certain extent. It's worth noting that Ohio State is 103rd in plays per minute this season, so this clock can be moving throughout.

The Buckeyes will pull away late, but it won't be a high scoring affair.

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Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.