Life in college football — especially in the Big Ten — is brutal. Look no further than the Wisconsin Badgers’ schedule to figure that one out. When they welcome the Ohio State Buckeyes to Madison this weekend, the Badgers will be taking on their fourth top-10 team of the 2016 college football season.
Wisconsin has also taken on the LSU Tigers, who were ranked No. 5 at the time; the Michigan State Spartans, who were ranked No. 8 at the time; and the Michigan Wolverines, who were ranked No. 4 at the time. The Buckeyes are currently ranked No. 2 in both major polls. Wisconsin enters this matchup by being ranked as high as No. 8.
Ohio State’s schedule has been easier, but this team still had to take on the Oklahoma Sooners, a team that made the College Football Playoff just a season ago. And, of course, traveling to Madison to take on the Badgers is no easy feat.
If Ohio State wins, it will continue to be the team to beat in the Big Ten, even though Michigan fans would likely disagree with that statement. For those fans, it’s important to remember that Urban Meyer’s squad took down Jim Harbaugh’s team by the score of 42-13 at Michigan in 2015. Of course, that was last year, and this is this year.
If the Badgers pull off the victory, they will completely shake up the College Football Playoff picture — to say the least.
Let the bold prediction games begin.
J.T. Barrett Catches Up In The Heisman Race With A Masterful Performance
Although players like Deshaun Watson and Lamar Jackson are getting most of the Heisman attention, J.T. Barrett is still very much alive in the race. In fact, ESPN currently has Barrett ranked at No. 3 in the Heisman race. Of course, so much football still needs to be played.
That said, when this game comes to an end, all eyes will be on Barrett. Currently, the Ohio State star has 981 passing yards, 15 passing touchdowns, 342 rushing yards, and four rushing touchdowns.
Considering Barrett can do damage with his arm and legs, five or more touchdowns isn’t out of the question for the quarterback. Not only is this bold for the simple fact that five touchdowns for one player is a whole lot of touchdowns, but the Badgers are also only allowing 12.2 points per game. Of course, the Buckeyes have one of the best offenses in the country as they are putting up an otherworldly 53.2 points per game.
Corey Clement Is The Only Bright Spot For Wisconsin’s Offense
Corey Clement has 319 rushing yards and five touchdowns on the season. If the Badgers’ offense has any chance of keeping up with the Buckeyes’ offense, then players like Clement have to come up big — and then some.
Unfortunately for Wisconsin, Clement will be the only bright spot on the offensive side of the ball.
While Wisconsin gives up a very little amount of points per game, Ohio State is even better in that department as it is only allowing 10.8 points per game.
In terms of offense, the Badgers are only averaging 26 points per contest, which doesn’t even touch the Buckeyes in the offensive department.
Ohio State Wins By — Wait For It — 21 Or More Points
Wisconsin is very capable of keeping up with Ohio State. It did knock off LSU and Michigan State, and it only lost to Michigan by the score of 14-7. With that said, Ohio State is a different kind of beast. Under Meyer, the Buckeyes are always one of the best teams in the country. They did win the first College Football Playoff.
If Wisconsin wins, it will shock the college football world. However, not only will Ohio State come out on top, but it will do so in blowout fashion.
Ohio State is averaging 323.6 rushing yards per game, which is the third-best mark in the country. Wisconsin is only allowing 90.4 rushing yards per game, which is the sixth-best mark in the sport. Something has to give.
Simply saying the Buckeyes will win is not bold enough. Now, a 21-point victory in Ohio State’s favor has bold written all over it, and that type of performance is possible if Meyer’s team plays up to its potential on both sides of the ball.
[Featured Image by Scott Halleran/Getty Images]