Missouri vs

Ohio St.

at Arlington
Fri, Dec 29
5:00 PM Pacific
Rotation: 263
Odds: Ohio St. -3, Total: 49

Game Analysis

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Lean – Ohio State (-3)  30   Missouri  23

Ohio State will be without starting quarterback Kyle McCord, who transferred, and reports are that All-American WR Marvin Harrison Jr. will not play. Harrison averaged 10.4 yards per target on 117 targets despite being double-teamed more than any receiver on the team. The rest of the wide receivers combined for just 8.4 YPT, so his absence is significant for Devin Brown, who will get his first start at quarterback. Brown didn’t look particularly good when he did get an opportunity to play (7.4 yards per pass play against teams that would allow 7.3 yppp to an average QB), but he also didn’t play with the starting receiving group in the mop-up duty he got. I’ll assume the standard difference between a 1st-year starting QB and his backup and add the adjustment for Harrison being out. WR Fleming has transferred, but he averaged only 6.3 yards on his 43 targets this season, which is 2.2 YPT lower than the next lower WR on the team – so his absence is a plus. While the pass game won’t likely be as good, the Buckeyes will have star RB TreVeyon Henderson, who averaged 6.2 ypr and has said he intends to play in this game. Ohio State’s rushing attack was just average for the season (5.0 yards per rushing play against teams that would allow 5.0 yprp to an average team) but they were +0.4 yprp in the games that Henderson played (-0.9 yprp in the 3 games he missed). The Buckeyes’ offense was 1.3 yards per play better than average in the regular season (6.8 yppl against teams that would allow 5.5 yppl) and I rate their attack at +0.8 yppl without their quarterback and star receiver.

Missouri has no players opting out and no key players transferring. Only injured defensive starters LB Ty’Ron Harper and CB Ennis Rakestraw are expected to miss this game and those two aren’t particularly impactful. West Virginia’s defense allowed just 21.8 points per game and was 0.7 yppl better than average (5.5 yppl allowed to teams that would combine to average 6.2 yppl against an average defense) and I rate that unit at 0.5 yppl better than average without their two injured starters. I project 428 yards at 6.4 yppl for Ohio State in this game (adjusted for playing in a covered stadium).

Missouri’s offense was only 0.1 yppl worse than Ohio State’s offense, as the Tigers averaged 6.8 yppl against teams that would allow 5.6 yppl to an average team, and that unit is intact for this game. Ohio State’s defense will be without starting S Lathan Ransom, who is injured (played just 8 games) and possibly top tackler LB Tommy Eichenberg, who is questionable to play. I don’t think either is particularly important, as despite leading the team in tackles, Eichenberg has just 2.5 total tackles for loss and no passes defended while Ransom was 10th on the team in tackles and defended just 3 passes. It’s possible that a couple of defensive players could be late opt-outs but most of the key players have already indicated that they’re playing and the Buckeyes defense should be pretty close to as good as they were in the regular season, which was among the best defensive teams in the nation. Ohio State yielded just 11.0 points and 4.2 yppl (with starters in the game) to teams that would average 5.8 yppl against an average defensive team and I project 354 yards at 5.6 yppl for Missouri with a 50% chance that Eichenberg is out (he doesn’t make much of a difference whether he plays or not).

The math favors Ohio State by 6.8 points with a total of 53.4 points and the Buckeyes apply to a 44-11-1 ATS bowl situation. I’ll lean with Ohio State at -3 or less.

  • Team Stats
  • Game Log
  • Missouri
  • Ohio St.


  • Run Plays 34.0 29.1
  • Run Yards 187.4 147.5
  • YPRP 5.5 5.1


  • Pass Comp 19.5 20.1
  • Pass Att 29.3 31.8
  • Comp % 66.5% 63.1%
  • Pass Yards 267.8 223.7
  • Sacks 1.8 3.0
  • Sack Yards 9.8 19.8
  • Sack % 5.9% 8.6%
  • Pass Plays 31.2 34.8
  • Net Pass Yards 258.0 203.8
  • YPPP 8.3 5.9


  • Total Plays 65.2 63.9
  • Total Yards 445.4 351.3
  • YPPL 6.8 5.5


  • Int 0.5 0.8
  • Int % 1.7% 2.4%
  • Fumbles 0.2 0.8
  • Turnovers 0.7 1.5
  • Points 34.1 21.8
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