WKU vs Ohio State Prediction - College Football Picks 9/16/23

Ohio State Buckeyes (2-0) vs WKU Hilltoppers (2-0)

Game Info: Saturday, September 16, 2023 at 4:00 pm (Ohio Stadium)

Betting Odds: Ohio State Buckeyes -29.5 -- Over/Under: 64 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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The Western Kentucky Hilltoppers will play the Ohio State Buckeyes in a non-conference game on Saturday afternoon at Ohio Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. Western Kentucky has started the season with a 2-0 record and has scored 93 points in two games, while Ohio State is also 2-0 and has looked very strong defensively. 

Western Kentucky Preview

The Western Kentucky Hilltoppers are 2-0 this year after they defeated Houston Christian by a score of 52-22 last week. Western Kentucky led 24-0 after the first quarter and was able to coast from there. Western Kentucky threw for 318 yards and rushed for 115 yards, while forcing three turnovers. Western Kentucky defeated South Florida by a score of 41-24 in Week 1. The Western Kentucky offense is averaging 46.5 points per game with 327 passing yards per game and 122 rushing yards per game. Austin Reed has thrown for 589 yards and six touchdowns, while also rushing for 41 yards and two scores. Davion Ervin-Poindexter has rushed for 78 yards, while Easton Messer has caught 11 passes for 134 yards and one touchdown. The Western Kentucky defense is allowing 23 points against per game and will face a very tough Ohio State team here. 

Ohio State Preview

The Ohio State Buckeyes are 2-0 this season after they defeated Youngstown State by a score of 35-7 in Week 2. Ohio State allowed Youngstown State to tie the game at seven in the first quarter, but they scored the last 28 points in the win. Ohio State out gained Youngstown State by a total of 482-234 and won the turnover battle 1-0. Ohio State defeated Indiana by a score of 23-3 in their first game. The Buckeyes offense hasn’t been as powerful as we thought it would be, but they have some serious playmakers at wide receiver. The Ohio State offense is averaging 29 points per game with 298 passing yards per game and 133 rushing yards per game, while going 30.4% on third down attempts this year. Kyle McCord has thrown for 497 yards, three touchdowns, and one pick for the Buckeyes. TreVeyon Henderson has rushed for 103 yards and two scores, while Marvin Harrison Jr. has caught nine passes for 178 yards and two touchdowns. The Ohio State defense is giving up 5 points against per game, but faces a Western Kentucky team that has scored 93 points in two games. 

Ohio State Buckeyes Team Facts

  • Ohio State has won each of its last 44 games against non-AP-ranked teams at Ohio Stadium.
  • The underdog has covered the spread in each of Ohio State's last five games.
  • Ohio State has won the first quarter in each of its last five games against non-conference opponents at Ohio Stadium.
  • Ohio State has won the first half in 12 of its last 14 games against non-conference opponents at Ohio Stadium.
  • Six of Ohio State's last seven games at Ohio Stadium have gone OVER the total points line.

Western Kentucky Hilltoppers Team Facts

  • Western Kentucky has lost each of its last five road games against AP-ranked teams.
  • Western Kentucky has covered the spread in six of its last seven road games in September.
  • Western Kentucky has won the first half in seven of its last nine games against non-conference opponents.
  • Each of Western Kentucky's last four September games as an underdog have gone OVER the total points line.

Matchup/League Facts

  • Ohio State ranked 1st among FBS teams for Q1 win percentage last season (.846).
  • Ohio State ranked 1st among FBS teams for Q3 win percentage last season (.923).
  • Western Kentucky was one of only five FBS teams to win 4+ games when trailing after Q1 last season.
  • Western Kentucky ranked T10th among FBS teams for H1 points per game last season (20.2).

Pick

Ohio State has been less than dominant in their first two games on the offensive side of the ball, but their defense has been fantastic. The Buckeyes will get a good test from this Western Kentucky offense, as they love to throw the ball all over the field. On the other side, the Ohio State offense should have a solid day against a WKU team that allowed 22+ points to Houston Christian and South Florida. I think we are going to see plenty of scoring in this game and I like the over here. 

The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a PickDawgz site consensus.

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