Detroit News predictions: Michigan vs. Ohio State

The Detroit News

Angelique S. Chengelis, Matt Charboneau, John Niyo and Bob Wojnowski predict the outcome of Saturday's Michigan-Ohio State game.

Michigan's Jabrill Peppers should see time at running back.

Angelique S. Chengelis: Everyone has been waiting for the Harbaugh vs. Meyer matchup, but of course, The Game goes way beyond that. Michigan’s defense has found ways to make big plays in three of the last four games — those three on the road — with a goal-line stand at Minnesota, a pass-breakup at Indiana and solid red-zone defense at Penn State, but Ohio State has more weapons, especially J.T. Barrett and Ezekiel Elliott. I would think Jabrill Peppers will see more time at running back for the Wolverines, but will that be enough. Ohio State 24-21

Matt Charboneau: Ohio State has, apparently, gone from one of the best teams in the country to a fractured mess in less than a week. Fractured the Buckeyes might be, but they’re still more talented than the Wolverines. That might not matter in a rivalry as intense as this one, but when it comes to crunch time, Ohio State will be able to run the ball and its defense will continue to play well, as it has all season. Ohio State 24-14

John Niyo: Ohio State play-calling came under fire after the loss Michigan State. Presumably, that game plan has been burned, and I expect we'll see more of the Buckeyes trying to stretch D.J. Durkin's defense — from sideline to sideline and down the field. But the key is whether the Wolverines can find any running room of their own, and just how much of a workload Jabrill Peppers can handle. Ohio State 28-24

Bob Wojnowski: Of all the bizarre scenarios this season, who would’ve ever guessed in this game, Michigan would have the more-productive quarterback. Jake Rudock has been blistering, compensating for a sluggish running game. Ohio State was battered by Michigan State, and you can bet Urban Meyer will loosen up his game plan. But the Wolverines will find a way to bottle up J.T. Barrett and Ezekiel Elliott and ride the emotions to victory in Jim Harbaugh’s rivalry debut as coach. Michigan 22-17