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Saturday NCAAF: Michigan Wolverines (44.5) @ Ohio State Buckeyes (-6.5)

O/U :44.5



Date: 2016-11-26
Time: 12:00:00

Generated from 7 Previous Games

Ohio State
Ohio State
SIDE :6.5

27.95 = 49.25

Today’s Pick: Ohio State -6.5/U44.5

It never stops amazing us how well the Forecast predicts spreads and totals. The more games it generates, the more accurate it is, and sometimes it can show a crystal clear edge one way or another. In this case, there is no strong indication one way or another, but it’s amazing how accurately Forecast reflects what Vegas linemakers are doing. Forecast is just one of many resources that ATS Stats has at it’s disposal.

This Saturday we’ll see the #3 Michigan Wolverines square up against the #2 Ohio State Buckeyes in the Big Ten East.

  • In their last 3 games, Michigan has marked 92 points and has allowed 27 points.
  • In their last 3 games, Ohio State has marked a whopping 141 points and has only allowed  22 points.

Ohio State is routinely marking over 300 yards passing, and while the air-game is where the Buckeyes have their real strength, even their run-game is more consistent than Michigan’s.

It looks like Forecast is leaning towards the OVER, but we’d hold up on that for a minute due to extenuating circumstances.

Michigan Wolverines have starting QB, Wilton Speight, on their injured list. He’s not injured on his throwing side, he did take reps in practice, and will be a game-time decision on Saturday’s game…but would he be at 100%? We’re thinking no, absolutely not. In fact, we’d bet on it.

Here’s why.

On November the 12th, we saw QB Speight get rocked in what was reportedly a fractured collarbone. If he had a broken clavicle, one of the most painful injuries the body can sustain, there is no way he lasts 60 minutes against a Buckeyes defense. Not only do we not think that he’ll see any field time after healing for only 2 weeks, but he wouldn’t be the same as all of his plays would be to guard against further injury.

So when we look at the Michigan backup QB, John O’Korn, we see a very different Michigan team. We see an O’Korn that passed for an extremely flimsy 59 yards last week. That can work when you’re up against an Indiana team positioned as a -24 favorite, but on Saturday they’ll need results against the #2 Ohio State squad that is thirsty for a win in front of their home team crowd.

Ultimately, before the injury, the books could have given this a PK evaluation, but they basically handicapped Speight’s issues as a -6 evaluation so we see Ohio St with the -6 spread.

To us, we don’t consider 60 minutes against an inferior QB a -6 difference. That would be a -16 difference. Also, this is why we would stomp the breaks on any talk of this going “Over The Total”. Likely, it will not at all go over the total. Both of these defenses will have it in their minds that this game is theirs to win or lose and we expect to see a score that reflects that reality.

Michigan has been 4-1 ML, but they’ve been 1-4 ATS last 5 outings. So Michigan has really been under-performing according to Vegas oddsmakers. Ohio hasn’t been doing much better (2-3 ATS) but we make the point just to say that the Wolverine’s problems were already in swing before the Speight injury.

This just in! Line has moved 1.5 points with Michigan, so right now we’re thinking that word is out that Speight WILL be starting for the Wolverines tomorrow….so we won’t be surprised to see him starting behind the C, but again, this doesn’t change anything. The pain is fresh and there is no way that Speight wants to re-fracture his collarbone and he’ll be playing like it.

ATS Stats – Strength of Schedule

Numbers in Yellow, Left to Right: All Season, Last 3 Games, Last 7 Games.

Michigan 10 – 1 90.91 9.09 51.57 0.71 6 – 1 85.71 14.29 30.61 0.58 10 – 1 90.91 9.09 51.57 0.71
Ohio State 10 – 1 90.91 9.09 55.62 0.73 6 – 1 85.71 14.29 51.02 0.68 10 – 1 90.91 9.09 55.62 0.73

In this matchup, the S.O.S. has Michigan showing a huge down-spike headed into tomorrow’s game. This began before Speight’s injury. It’s likely showing some instability deep in the Michigan camp. Ohio State is a healthy fine-tuned machine.

If we weren’t sure yet, we are now. Ohio St. -6.5 final answer.