The Ohio State Buckeyes are 3-0 both straight up and against the spread in three meetings with the Rutgers Scarlet Knights since the latter joined the Big Ten a few seasons ago. The Buckeyes are heavily favored to beat the Knights again when the teams meet Saturday night in Piscataway.
College football point spread: The Buckeyes opened as 27.5-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark. Line updates and matchup report.
College football betting pick, via OddsShark computer: 44.1-9.9 Buckeyes (College football picks on every game)
Why the Ohio State Buckeyes can cover the spread
Since losing at home to Oklahoma three weeks ago Ohio State beat Army and UNLV by a combined score of 92-28. Last week the Buckeyes jumped out to a 37-0 lead on the Runnin' Rebels, and had the 40-point spread pushed at 54-14 with the whole fourth quarter to go. But driving for a score, potentially for the cover, backup quarterback Dwayne Haskins threw a pick-six, and he later lost a fumble inside the UNLV 10-yard line.
On the afternoon Ohio State outgained the Rebs 664-264, doing most of its damage through the air. JT Barrett hit on 12-of-17 throws for 209 yards and five touchdowns in one half of play, and Haskins hit on 15-of-23 throws for 228 yards and two more scores. Wide receivers Parris Campbell and CJ Saunders both caught 100 yards worth of balls, and seven different Buckeyes caught touchdown passes.
Two weeks ago Ohio State, going against a 32-point spread, led the Black Knights 38-7 late, but downed the ball on the final play at the Army 10-yard line.
Why the Rutgers Scarlet Knights can cover the spread
Rutgers is only 1-3 this season, but 3-1 ATS, after losing at Nebraska last week 27-17 but covering as 11-point 'dogs. The Knights actually led early 7-0 and 17-14 late into the third quarter. They faded from there but hung on for the cover.
On the day Rutgers only managed 194 yards of total offense but held the 'Huskers to just 306 yards. The Knights defense also provided a huge boost when Kiy Hester pulled off a pick-six just after halftime that gave Rutgers the lead. Near the end the Knights stiffened in their own red zone and held Nebraska to a short field goal to preserve the cash.
Rutgers opened this season with a 30-14 loss to Washington, but that game was closer than the score indicates and the Knights covered easily as 28-point 'dogs. And two weeks ago Rutgers beat Morgan State 65-0, covering as 40-point chalk.
Ohio State has beaten the Knights the last three seasons by an average score of 54-8, and there's little reason to believe Saturday's result will be much different. Smart money here at sports betting sites wagers the Buckeyes.
College football betting trends
Ohio State is 3-0 SU and ATS in its last three games against Rutgers.
The total has gone under in Rutgers' last four games against its conference.
Rutgers is 4-1 ATS in its last five games at home in September.
All college football odds and betting trends courtesy of Bleacher Report’s official odds partner, OddsShark. All quotes gathered firsthand unless otherwise noted. Check out Twitter for injury and line-movement updates and the OddsShark YouTube page for picks and analysis, or download the free odds tracker app.