Penn State vs. Ohio State: NCAAF Week 8 Odds, Prediction

Payton Matthews | Updated Oct 16, 2023

The Big Ten takes centre stage on Saturday when No. 7 Penn State visits No. 3 Ohio State in a matchup of unbeaten teams, with the loser facing a huge uphill climb to reach the conference title game.

The Buckeyes are 3.5-point favourites on the college football odds.

Point Spread and Betting Analysis

The Big Ten will do away with divisions next year when Oregon, Washington, UCLA and USC join from the Pac-12. That’s a great thing because the Big Ten should have done away with divisions a while ago because the East is so much better than the weak West. The three marquee programs in the league currently are easily Michigan, Ohio State and Penn State (all currently unbeaten) and only one can get to the Big Ten title game because they are all in the East. PSU has yet to play in that game because it generally always loses to either the Wolverines or Buckeyes.

If the Nittany Lions pull off this upset, their only big test left is hosting No. 2 Michigan on Nov. 11. If they win that, too, PSU might well find itself in the College Football Playoff for the first time. Ohio State should run the table after this game – an Oct. 28 trip to Wisconsin might be a bit tricky – until visiting Michigan to close the regular season per usual.

Ohio State leads this all-time rivalry 24-13 and has won the past six. It was 44-31 in State College last year. Both starting QBs from that day are now in the NFL. This is the first all-time meeting with both teams 6-0 or better.

Penn State Nittany Lions

Penn State (6-0) could have been forgiven for looking past UMass on Saturday, but the Nittany Lions didn’t do that in a 63-0 rout, the biggest shutout win for PSU since joining the Big Ten (but a non-conference game). It was the second time Penn State has scored at least that many points this season and it hasn’t allowed more than 15 points in a game. Penn State held UMass to just 26 yards in the first half and 109 total. That defence had seven sacks, the unit’s 11th straight game with at least three, tied for the nation’s longest streak. Overall the Nittany Lions have 11 straight wins, each by at least 14 points. Over the last two seasons, no other FBS team has won by a 14-point margin in more than six straight games. It’s the longest such run by a Big Ten team since 1904 (Michigan with 13). Offensively, Penn State has recorded at least 30 points in 13 straight games, the longest active streak in the nation. First-year starting QB Drew Allar hasn’t been asked to do much yet, but the Ohio native will need his best game to win in Columbus. Penn State has lost 14 straight road games vs AP Top-5 opponents.

Ohio State Buckeyes

Ohio State (6-0) avoided a trap itself on Saturday in winning 41-7 at Purdue despite playing without a handful of injured starters, led by running backs TreVeyon Henderson and Miyan Williams and wideout Emeka Egbuka. Seems likely they were rested on purpose ahead of this showdown. Kyle McCord threw for 276 yards and three scores. Backup QB Devin Brown came off the bench and recorded both a rushing and passing touchdown. Marvin Harrison Jr. recorded his fourth 100-yard receiving game of the season with six catches for 105 yards and a TD. The Buckeyes defence limited Purdue to just 257 total yards. That unit has allowed only 58 points all season. Ohio State has won six of its past seven at home vs. AP Top 10 opponents like Penn State. Coach Ryan Day is 35-0 vs. Big Ten opponents other than Michigan.

Score prediction

Penn State 20, Ohio State 24