Western Kentucky vs. Ohio State Prediction, Odds, Trends and Key Players for College Football Week 3

Will Kyle McCord prove that he deserves the No. 1 QB title of the Buckeyes?
Sep 9, 2023; Columbus, Ohio, USA;  Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback Kyle McCord (6) drops to throw
Sep 9, 2023; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback Kyle McCord (6) drops to throw / Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Ohio State has its man under center, officially naming Kyle McCord its starting quarterback, beating out Devin Brown.

The Buckeyes will get a final tune up game before the schedule picks up with a road trip to South Bend to face Notre Dame, hosting Western Kentucky and its impressive offense with last year's passing leader, Austin Reed.

The Buckeyes are laying a big number at home, but will it run up the score? Let's check out the odds:

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Western Kentucky vs. Ohio State Odds, Spread and Total

Western Kentucky vs. Ohio State Betting Trends

  • Ohio State has stayed UNDER the total in both games this season
  • Ohio State is 0-2 against the spread (ATS) this season
  • Western Kentucky is 1-1 ATS this season

How to Watch

  • Date: Saturday, September 16th
  • Game Time: 4:00 PM EST
  • Venue: Ohio Stadium
  • How to Watch (TV): FOX
  • Western Kentucky Record: 2-0
  • Ohio State Record: 2-0

Western Kentucky vs. Ohio State Key Players to Watch

Western Kentucky

Malachi Corley: The Hilltoppers leading receiver got hurt in the first half of the tam's opener, but is set to return in Week 3 against Ohio State. This will be a massive boost to the WKU passing attack as Corley was fourth last season in catches (101) and yards (1,293). He also forced the most missed tackles in the country last season with 40.

Ohio State

Kyle McCord: McCord won the quarterback battle that leaked into the regular season, but he hasn't run away with the competition in my opinion. McCord is averaging less than 10 yards per pass attempt so far against two lackluster defenses in Youngstown State and Indiana. He also has made only three big-time throws to three turnover worthy plays, per Pro Football Focus.

Get ready for college football Week 3 with every Top 25 team's pick against the spread (ATS)

Western Kentucky vs. Ohio State Prediction and Pick

While there is a lot of excitement around the announcement that Kyle McCord will be the starter for the Buckeyes going forward, that's a red flag for the Buckeyes chances of contending for any postseason hardware this season.

Yes, Marvin Harrison Jr., Julian Fleming and Emeka Eubeka all make life easier for a quarterback, especially against a Western Kentucky defense that is lacking the playmakers to match up, but I don't believe that Ohio State has the ability to stretch the ball down the field at quarterback. We'll see how WKU's aggressive defensive scheme matches up against Ohio State's offensive line.

The Buckeyes have Notre Dame on deck, so I'm not sure they are going to reveal the playbook with McCord under center, opting for a more vanilla scheme against one of the most electric offenses in college football in Western Kentucky, who bolsters the 2022 passing leader in Austin Reed. Helping the case for the 'dog is the likely return of Corley, which can test an unproven OSU secondary more than the likes of Indiana and Youngstown State.

With limited incentive to run up the scoreboard, I'll take WKU to cover a big number.

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.

Track Reed's bets here!