Ohio U -2.5 (o/u 54) vs. San Diego State
Ohio was one of the surprise teams in a very competitive MAC conference. They finished the season at 8-4, which included closing out the season with 5 wins in its last 6 games. There’s no doubt the Bearcats excelled on offense with the rushing game. They averaged 261.9 YPG rushing (24th in the NCAA), led by three players with over 800 yards rushing on the season. The team’s leading rusher was A.J. Oeullette, who ran for 1,142 yards and 12 TDs. QB Nathan Rourke added 816 yards rushing and 13 TDs to go with 22 TDs passing. The defense was serviceable, giving up 26.7 PPG.
San Diego State comes into this game with very little momentum, losing 4 of its last 5 games and the last 3 in a row. On offense, the Aztecs relied on a balanced attack, which turned to rotating QBs and a rushing attack that featured Juwan Washington, who accounted for 870 yards and 10 TDs. At 7-5, the Aztecs found themselves in a lot of close games, thanks in part to a solid defense that only allowed opponents to score 21.8 PPG. It’s notable that the last 10 games the Aztecs played were decided by 9 points or less.
Looking at the statistical difference between these two teams, it would appear the linemaker believes the Aztecs played a tougher schedule that included games against nationally ranked teams like Stanford, Boise State and Fresno State. The key matchup in this game will be San Diego State’s excellent rushing defense (94 YPG, 4th in the nation) versus the Bobcat’s three-headed rushing attack. Assuming that ends in a stalemate, the difference in the game could be Ohio’s ability to pass the ball.
Prediction: In a close call, Ohio should win a close one by controlling the ball. Play Ohio -2.5