Bob Wojnowski and John Niyo are joined by former running backs Nick Hill of MSU and Chris Howard of UM to talk about this weekend's big games, and Matt Charboneau breaks down his AP Top 25 vote. Detroit News
Matt Charboneau, Angelique S. Chengelis, John Niyo and Bob Wojnowski pick the outcome of the Michigan State-Ohio State game.
Matt Charboneau: The point spread of nearly two touchdowns seems odd considering the Spartans and Buckeyes have had two games decided by a single point in the previous five meetings, as well as a three-point win for MSU two years ago. Expect another tight one this time with the Big Ten East on the line. The Spartans will do a decent job of containing the Buckeyes’ running game and Brian Lewerke will make his share of plays in the passing attack, but J.T. Barrett will make a couple more as the home team pulls it out. Ohio State, 30-27
Angelique S. Chengelis: It is never easy to play in Ohio Stadium and probably not ideal to play the Buckeyes when they’re coming off an embarrassing loss at Iowa, but that’s what Michigan State faces. But nothing seems to intimidate or throw off the Spartans, so why should this be any different? After all, no one knows which Buckeyes will show up. The one that quarterback J.T. Barrett led to a remarkable comeback against Penn State or the lackluster version from last week? Shutting down Barrett will be the key for MSU, and that’s entirely doable, especially if Barrett throws four interceptions, as he did last week. That, of course, seems unlikely since he entered the Iowa game with only one interception this season. Brian Lewerke has to be mistake-free and the MSU run game has to maintain consistency. MSU has pulled off the upset in Ohio Stadium before, but this time, Barrett gets it done. Ohio State, 31-24
John Niyo: The road team has owned this rivalry of late. But I have a feeling Ohio State's defensive front may own the line of scrimmage In this one. And unless Michigan State's defense forces turnovers the way Iowa's did last week, the Buckeyes will take control of the Big Ten East. Ohio State, 28-20
Bob Wojnowski: The oddsmakers say the Spartans don’t have much of a chance, which naturally improves their chance. It’s the classic Mark Dantonio trap, although you have to believe the Buckeyes will be ready for it. Urban Meyer faced all sorts of pointed questions after the rout in Iowa, and so did quarterback J.T. Barrett. The Spartans’ run defense is good enough to slow the Buckeyes’ tailbacks, but Barrett is too good to be completely erratic again. Ohio State, 27-17