2015 Ohio State Buckeyes Season Preview – Betting Futures Odds and Win Total
Written by FairwayJay of North Shore Sports, INC
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The defending national champs are expected to contend for the national title again as Ohio State is a 3-1 choice to repeat. The Buckeyes are supremely talented with balance and strength on offense that can overpower teams and allow the improved defense to deliver stronger stats this season.
9/7: at Virginia Tech
9/12: vs. Hawaii
9/19: vs. Northern Illinois
9/26: vs. Western Michigan
10/3: at Indiana
10/10: vs. Maryland (Homecoming)
10/17: vs. Penn State
10/24: at Rutgers
11/7: vs. Minnesota
11/14: at Illinois
11/21: vs. Michigan State
11/27: at Michigan
The Big Ten East division remains the strongest and Ohio State plays their toughest two games at home against Michigan State and Penn State. The Buckeyes do not play three of the strongest teams from the West division in Wisconsin, Nebraska or Iowa.
SEASON WIN TOTAL
The Buckeyes are lined at 11.5 wins with heavy juice on the under at -180. It will take an undefeated regular season to cash an over season win ticket, but the Buckeyes get their two toughest opponents at home.
However, recall their one loss last season was at home to Virginia Tech as a 11-point favorite.
Early lines show Ohio State laying over two TDs to Virginia Tech along with their closest rivals in the Big Ten East division Michigan State, Penn State and Michigan. The Buckeyes are a heavy favorite to make a return trip to the NCAA playoffs and final four, but there is no value betting on or against Ohio State this season.
The Buckeyes averaged 45 points per game and 512 yards offense each of the past two seasons and did so last season despite losing preseason Big Ten Player of the Year QB Braxton Miller. He returns, but so too does last year’s star starter and third team All American quarterback JT Barrett. Cardale Jones was the third string QB last year and all he did was guide the Buckeyes to three-straight wins to close the season over Wisconsin, Alabama and Oregon.
Jones has a rocket arm and passed for over 200 yards in playoff victories over Alabama and Oregon, but Barrett will get first crack to remain the starter in a heated battle with three talented quarterbacks.
Ohio State returns more and is stronger this season, and regardless of who is under center, the Buckeyes are loaded at every position and should once again be an elite offensive team that may both run and pass for an average of over 250 yards per game.
Seven starters return on defense and head coach Urban Meyer’s team is stockpiled with talent. The linebacker unit is elite, and junior All-American DL Joey Bosa is a projected No. 1 overall pick in next year’s NFL draft. Senior defensive tackle Adolphus Washington may also be a first round pick and their pressure on opposing QBs will be fierce again after dropping opposing QBs 45 times last season.
That pressure will make an already talented and top-tier secondary even better. Junior safety’s Vonn Bell and Tyvis Powell combined for 10 INTs last season.
Still, Ohio State did get gashed on the ground last season by Navy (370) and Indiana (288).
Against quality QBs, they allowed high passing yards and production against Cincinnati (352), Michigan State (358) and Oregon (333). This is a team that allowed at least 24 points in four of their final five games before holding Oregon to 20 in the national title game. The Buckeyes have room to grow and will be better if the run defense improves as expected. There’s too much talent here to not be among the Big Ten’s best.
The Buckeyes again face a very modest schedule as the Big Ten has not been strong the past few seasons and their toughest opponents travel to the Horseshoe in Columbus, where Ohio State fans led the nation in attendance last season (105,000/game).
Last year’s projected dominant team Florida State did go undefeated in the regular season but was very fortunate and struggled against a handful of teams. Ohio State will be powerful again and coach Urban Meyer is the best in the business and willing to pound teams and put them away.
He’ll have plenty of opportunities to do so again this season, but there is no value at all betting on Ohio State to win the national title, so I can’t recommend betting on an undefeated season either.
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