Saturday’s Wisconsin-Ohio State game was likely thought of a meeting between two 3-0 teams before the season started.
The Buckeyes lived up to the hype, the Badgers did not.
Wisconsin has beaten two lousy teams and suffered one bad loss. Ohio State took care of Notre Dame then trounced a couple of lesser-lights.
Going into Columbus is hardly an easy task and the Badgers find themselves a heavy underdog, usually on the other end of that role.
Will this be a measuring stick for Wisconsin’s 2022 season – or will they just be on the other end of a beating?
Here’s this week’s picks from around the web:
The Associated Press' Ralph D. Russo: Ohio State 38, Wisconsin 21.
Pete Fiutak of Collegefootballnews.com: Ohio State 37, Wisconsin 17. “Wisconsin will have a few decent drives with Braelon Allen and Chez Mellusi pounding away early, but it’ll all come apart late in the second quarter. The Buckeyes will start well, sputter as the Badger defense settles in, and then … Turnover. The Ohio State D will come up with a pick, Stroud will connect on a TD pass three plays later, and that will be that.”
Bill Bender of The Sporting News: Ohio State 38, Wisconsin 17. “The Buckeyes' hammered Wisconsin 38-7 in their last visit to The Shoe in 2019. The Badgers have given up 8.0 points per game through three weeks, but they haven't faced an offense like this. The Buckeyes make a definitive statement in prime-time this time.”
James Parks of SI.com: Ohio State 38, Wisconsin 20. “Not that there won't be some bombs from Stroud to his receivers, but the Buckeyes will show they can not just build a lead, but protect it in the Big Ten opener, an important building block en route to the College Football Playoff.”
Kerry Miller of Bleacher Report: Ohio State 45, Wisconsin 14. “Should be similar to 2019, when Wisconsin held opponents not named Ohio State to 13.75 points per game but gave up 38 in the regular season and 34 in the B1G championship against the Buckeyes. Except I've got Ohio State scoring even more than that this time around.”
Chip Minnich of Athlon Sports: Ohio State 42, Wisconsin 28. “The oddsmakers have Ohio State as a clear favorite, but the history of this conference rivalry with Wisconsin is usually one that involves close games. It should be that way again through at least the first three quarters, but the Buckeyes should be able to pull away a bit late.”
Brad Crawford of 247 Sports: Ohio State 38, Wisconsin 17. “The home loss to Washington State was another head-scratcher for Paul Chryst, whose team simply can't muster enough offense against mid-level to high competition at times. Is that going to change against the best team in the Big Ten coming off a 77-point game against Toledo? Likely not. You may want to tease this one under 17 points to be safe, but I'll lay the points here and take the Buckeyes. Wisconsin's defense may keep this one within the number until the fourth quarter when Ohio State tacks on another touchdown.”
Joe Cox of Saturday Tradition: Ohio State 42, Wisconsin 17. “Wisconsin will make some plays, particularly if the Buckeyes are being cautious and holding or limiting their injured starters. But there’s no indication that Wisconsin can control the Ohio State offense. This feels like a competitive game for a quarter or so, but in the end, Stroud passes for 350 yards and the Buckeyes roll.”
Paul Harvey of Saturday Tradition: Ohio State 34, Wisconsin 20. “In the end, Ohio State’s playmakers — particularly CJ Stroud and his experience at QB — should give the Buckeyes a leg up in the game. However, don’t be surprised if Mertz and Wisconsin are able to keep things close deep into the second half.”
Lincoln Journal Star writers: Luke Mullin – Ohio State 49, Wisconsin 24; Nate Head – Wisconsin 31, Ohio State 27; Arnie Just – Ohio State 45, Wisconsin 27; Colton Stone – Ohio State 66, Wisconsin 21.
Bruce Feldman of The Athletic ($): Ohio State 49, Wisconsin 21. “The Buckeyes are just getting cranked up now. I think they score more points in the first half than the Badgers have given up in the first three games combined (24).”
Stewart Mandel of The Athletic ($): Ohio State 34, Wisconsin 15. “This will be an interesting litmus test on both sides. Will C.J. Stroud and the full-strength Buckeyes offense fare better against Wisconsin than it did versus Notre Dame? And will QB Graham Mertz, Braelon Allen and the Badgers offense fare better against Ohio State than it did versus Washington State? My answers are: Yes and no.”
Randy Johnson of the Minneapolis Star Tribune: Ohio State 34, Wisconsin 20.
Bob Dunning of Davis Enterprise: Ohio State.
Trent Knoop of Wolverines Wire: Ohio State 38, Wisconsin 27.
Riley Donald of Hawkeyes Wire: Ohio State 49, Wisconsin 21. “Wisconsin had a much-needed get right game after their stumble against Washington State. They did exactly what they needed to do in a 66-7 thumping of New Mexico State. That said, the Buckeyes are an entirely different beast."
Picks and Parlays: Ohio State 42, Wisconsin 14.
Columbus Dispatch writers: Bill Rabinowiz – Ohio State 42, Wisconsin 17; Joey Kaufman – Ohio State 35, Wisconsin 17; Rob Oller – Ohio State 42, Wisconsin 21; Colin Gay – Ohio State 42, Wisconsin 20.
Cleveland.com writers: Nathan Baird – Ohio State 37, Wisconsin 19; Stephen Means – Ohio State 41, Wisconsin 17; Doug Lesmerises – Ohio State 42, Wisconsin 27.
Meredith Hein of Land Grant Holy Land (and kudos for all the cheese puns): Ohio State 38, Wisconsin 17. “When it comes down to it, though, Ohio State, which is favored by 19 against the Badgers, has proven scoring ability even against good defenses dating back to last season. While their points may be more limited, Ohio State should be able to put Wisconsin away. Plus, in a blackout Horseshoe, it’s Ohio State’s turf. It’s nacho house, Wisconsin.”
Bill Connelly of ESPN: His S&P+ projection has it Ohio State 34, Wisconsin 19.
All three Athlon Sports analysts are picking Ohio State to win.
All five analysts at SI.com think Ohio State will win.
All seven analysts at USAToday.com pick Ohio State to emerge with a victory.
All four analysts at FootballScoop.com predict an Ohio State victory.