Ohio State Buckeyes vs Indiana Hoosiers NCAAF Week 1 Preview and Prediction September 2, 2023
Ohio State vs Indiana September 2, 2023 @ Bloomington IN
Opening Betting Odds
Spread: Buckeyes -27.5, Hoosiers +27.5
Moneyline: Buckeyes -5500, Hoosiers +2100
The Hoosiers will open the season as a home underdog, and the bookmakers are giving them a four touchdown spread against Ohio State. The Buckeyes won 56-14 at home versus Indiana last year, covering the spread of -39.5. The Hoosiers have just two wins in the BIG10 the last two seasons, after going 6-1 in conference play in 2020.
The Buckeyes have covered the spread in back to back games versus Indiana, but the Hoosiers had gone 6-2 against the spread in the previous eight meetings. These teams have played high scoring games in recent seasons, with the total going over in each of the last six head to head meetings.
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- 11-2 Overall in 2022
- 8-1 in the BIG10 in 2022
- 6-6-1 ATS in 2022
The Buckeyes lost CJ Stroud to the NFL draft, but they still have one of the most talented groups of receivers in the country. Kyle McCord is considered the favorite to win battle for starting quarterback, with Devin Brown also in the mix. If there is a concern for the offense it’s the offensive line, which failed to impress in the spring.
The rest of the offense is stacked, with Marvin Harrison Jr. coming back after catching 77 passes for 1,263 yards and 14 touchdowns in 2022. The top two rushers are back, with Tre Henderson and Miyan Williams who combined to rush for 1,396 yards and 21 touchdowns last year.
The second year under Jim knowles should bode well for improvements on the defense, and until the loss to Michigan in the final game of the season they were trending in the right direction.
- 4-8 Overall in 2022
- 2-7 in the BIG10 in 2022
- 4-8 ATS in 2022
Tom Allen has dipped into the transfer portal to bolster the roster and improve on a lackluster 2022 season. With only seven starters returning, Indiana will need Tennessee transfer Tayven Jackson to play well at quarterback if they want to become bowl eligible.
New offensive line coach Bob Bostad comes over from Wisconsin, and he should be able to improve on a unit that really struggled in 2022. A talented receiving corps is could be the strength of the offense, led by senior Cam Camper who caught 11 passes for 158 yards in Week 1 last year.
Offensive coordinator Walt Bell is in his second season, and his Air Raid attack will have a better chance at success if there is more stability at the quarterback position.
- The Over is 10-1 in the Buckeyes last 11 games overall.
- The Over is 34-16-2 in the Buckeyes last 52 road games.
- The Over is 6-0 in the last six meetings.
- The Over is 6-1 in the Hoosiers last seven games in September.
- The Over is 5-1-1 in the last seven meetings in Indiana.
Prediction: Ohio State 44 – Indiana 20
All the history and the trends suggest that this will be a high scoring game. These teams have gone over in six straight, and the Buckeyes have gone over in 10 of their last 11 overall. Ohio State scored 50+ points in three of the last four meetings, and they have averaged over 50 points in the last six meetings.
While the offensive line appears to be a soft spot, it’s unlikely that Indiana can exploit that weakness. Big plays should allow the Buckeyes to pile on the points, and another high score appears to be in the cards in Week 1 in Bloomington.