Week 7 Predictions – 2023
Last Week: The Buckeyes fell behind early to Maryland but took charge of the second half and secured a 37-17 victory. With the win, Ohio State is one of only 14 teams that are still unbeaten, again showing that it is really tough to win week in and week out. For our staff predictions we had our lowest percentage of success but Coach Rick was 3-1 which moved him into a tie for first place with Dave. We return to five games this week so we will see how it goes.
This Week’s Games: Ohio State heads to Ross-Aide stadium this weekend, a place that has been a bit of a trap for the Buckeyes over the years. Will this be another upset win for the Boilermakers or will it be more of a ‘Holy Buckeye’? …. The big game of the weekend is Oregon at Washington, both teams are unbeaten and have aspirations of making the playoffs. Regardless of who wins this game, can the Pac-12 get two teams in the playoffs? …. USC goes to South Bend to take on the Irish. Will the lack of a defense prevent the Trojans from getting this road victory? …. Miami will be playing North Carolina in Chapel Hill. The Hurricanes lost one of the most strangeest game last week, can they recover after just a week to pick up win and remain in the ACC hunt? …. Missouri and Kentucky facing off in a battle of second tier SEC teams that wanted to be first tier. Will either of these teams ever be able to break that glass ceiling and get mentioned along with the top teams in the conference?
Buckeye Greats: As in the past, we will continue to include former Buckeye players in our prediction fun and we are thrilled to have Vaughn Broadnax back with us as a regular participant for the ninth straight year.
Here we go with our Week 7 Picks – Good Luck to All – Gregg
(3)Ohio State @ Purdue
Vaughn Broadnax (OSU 1980-83): Purdue has been a trap game for years and for some reason the Buckeyes fall in it. Fortunately, the defense is playing a lot more conservatively and yielding great results. I see a fast start from Kyle McCord and the Bucks evaporate the Boilermakers 49-10.
Coach Rick: This is not going to be a good game. I sure hope it is not a trap game for Ohio State. I have OSU winning by 17.
Cory: It’s been a tough season for Purdue. The Boilermakers saw their head coach Jeff Brohm leave for Louisville in the offseason. They thought they were getting a good quarterback transfer in Hudson Card to fill the shoes of Aidan O’Connell, but he’s thrown just six touchdowns against five interceptions. On top of that, the Boilermakers are coming off a loss to Iowa. That said, we all know the challenges that come with playing Purdue in the middle of October. Ohio State cannot underestimate the Boilermakers. The Buckeyes looked like a complete team for two quarters of their game against Maryland. Can the Buckeyes do it for a full game against Purdue? Ohio State 40, Purdue 17
Dave: Ohio State 28 Purdue 21
Gregg: Purdue has had a lot of struggles and shortcomings this year and their record shows it. They find themselves tied with multiple teams in the middle of the B1G West Division standings. The Buckeyes have shown some shortcomings of their own, particularly on the offensive line but have managed to remain unbeaten. Assuming the weather does not button down the offensive game plan, I expect the Buckeyes have a break out game of sorts to try get some things working before their huge match-up with Penn State next week. Too bad no one will see it thanks to the broadcasting decision to put this game on the Peacock network. Ohio State 38 Purdue 10
Joe-S-U: Ohio State
John: 1983, 2000, 2004, 2009, 2011, 2018. What do these years all have in common? Even though it could be argued that OSU had the better team in all of those years, the Bucks rolled into West Lafayette and left with an L. In fact, since 1990 the Bucks are just 6-5 on Ross-Aide Stadium. Throw in a rainy forecast and an OSU offense that is having trouble running the ball and the tea leaves tell me that this one will closer than most Buckeye fans would like. Ohio State 24 Purdue 17
Josh: The Buckeyes make their first trip to West Lafayette since 2018, but this years team have to worry about a trap game against the Boilermaker. Ohio State has started the last few games offensively with a slow start, but with Purdue’s rushing defense ranked 85th in the country, the Buckeyes can hopefully gain confidence on the ground, and give Kyle McCord a chance to make one more impression before the big showdown next week against Penn State. One of the intriguing story lines will be about who steps in incase Egbuka is not able to play after his injury last week against Maryland, but I am sure Hartline will have the next man ready to go. Ohio State covers the spread on the road, and comes back home 6-0. Ohio State 42 – Purdue 13.
Steven: Those who have followed the Buckeyes closely this year should have noticed the lack of push from the offensive line. Coach Ryan Day, from after the Notre Dame game forward seems to be fixated on proving the team is filled with grit and exhibits toughness. The Buckeyes have been great on defense in this regard, and some may say there is a lot of mental toughness on the offense, especially when dealing with adversity. But when it comes to the trenches, and dominating the opposition in the trenches, the Buckeyes have fallen flat. I’m not sure if Coach Day is trying to prove something to the world, himself, or the team itself, but consistently beating your head against a wall is madness. Sometimes the coaching staff pivots, but about a quarter late. This intransigence will come to bite us. Maybe they’re just sandbagging us all. This week, the Buckeyes should have Treyveon Henderson back, which will be a huge boost to the run game. Henderson is the home run hitter the team needs to be properly balanced. The Boilers shouldn’t be much of a test, and they are certainly less talented than Maryland, but ya know, things get spooky on the road in West Lafayette, and it is October. The Buckeye just need to start trusting QB Kyle McCord on first down and all will be right with the world. This one still makes me nervous, though. OSU at Purdue, on the road, on the Peacock network… it all screams bad juju. OSU should win, but I’m calling it now, something weird is gonna happen. Bucks 31-17
Trout: I know Ohio State has a murky past when going to Purdue, but I don’t see this Ohio State team getting upset this week. I truly believe the defense will be able to keep Purdue in check. And the offense should be able to score enough to win comfortablely. It may not look pretty. It took a whole half for the Buckeye offense to get things going. Ohio State is the better team, and if they do what they are supposed to do this game shouldn’t be a contest. There is always that small fear in the back of my mind that Purdue can pull the upset, because they’ve done it a few times in recent memory, However I truly believe the Buckeyes will win by a few scores, because they are the more talented team. Ohio State gets out of Lafayette with the win. (Ohio State, 38-10)
Final Score: Ohio State 41 Purdue 17
(8)Oregon @ (7)Washington
Vaughn Broadnax (OSU 1980-83): I have to give the home team the slight edge in this one. The winner will need to score with little or no time on the clock. Washington beats Oregon 41-35.
Coach Rick: I believe that defense wins games. In this case I have Oregon with the better defense. I have Oregon winning by 10.
Cory: It’s difficult to assess some of these PAC-12 teams. Both Oregon and Washington have looked great so far this season, but that’s not saying much considering their schedules thus far. Oregon hammered Colorado, while Washington squeaked by Arizona. Those are the toughest opponents each team has played thus far this season. I’m excited to see if either team is legit, and I’m excited to see a terrific quarterback battle between Bo Nix and Michael Penix Jr. The team that wins could have the inside track to a playoff spot, and typically in the past playing at Washington has been a tough task but I believe Oregon will be up to it. Nix has a level of toughness to him that I like and I think the Ducks will be the more resilient team. Oregon 45, Washington 42
Dave: Washington 32 Oregon 31
Gregg: This is the game of ‘Rent-a-QB’. Both starting quarterbacks are Heisman candidates but both came from other teams. Bo Nix of Oregon came from Auburn, Michael Penix of Washington started his play in Indiana. As we are seeing at so many univeristies, a quarterback moves from one team to another and makes a winner out the new team. Any Buckeye fan remember a guy name Joe Borrow, or even Qwin Ewers? Sam Hartman got a new life at Notre Dame. The list goes on and on. The Huskies and the Ducks are both have a great season and are very well positioned to snag a playoff spot if they can just finish what they have started. I think either team can win this one but I will give the edge to the ‘Sailgators’. Washington 44 Oregon 35
John: One of the few players still in the mix to derail a second Heisman for Caleb Williams might be Micheal Penix. He’ll need to put up big numbers if he wants to stay in that mix. Fortunately for him, he plays in the “defense is optional” Pac-12. The over/under in this one is 66. Take the over. Washington 42 Oregon 38
Josh: This should be a very good game, and will start the round robin scheduling for the top PAC-12 teams. Who ever wins this game between Bo Nix and Michael Penix Jr is going to put themselves near the top of the Heisman race. With this game being in Seattle, I think the Huskies will have a nice home field advantage to start, but I am rolling with Oregon to win this one on the road, keeping in line with my preseason prediction for who will make the CFP (which will look a lot like 2014’s participants). I think the key is Oregon has a better defense but the duo of Husky receivers make some plays. Oregon 38 – Washington 34.
Steven: This is the game of the weekend. Both of these teams have a pretty good case to be in the top 5, and the winner should have the inside track to make it to the college football playoffs. The game could rightly be called the Transfer Portal Bowl, as both QBs are transfers, Washington’s Michael Penix, Jr coming from indiana and Oregon’s Bo Nix previously played at Auburn. Both are tearing it up this year and the game could easily wind up an aerial showcase. Both teams skew heavily to the air attack, with Oregon gaining 59% of their yardage through the air, and Washington a whopping 78% of theirs. Unstoppable force meets immovable object. Oregon’s pass defense is 5th in the nation, and this number comes after the Duck’s tilt against the equally heavy pass team in Colorado, and we all know how that turned out. The Huskies are a much better team than the Buffs, but this one just seems like it favors the Ducks a bit more. Quack Attack 41-28.
Trout: This should be a really close game. I will give the edge to the Ducks, but I do beelove the game will go down to the wire. Both teams have the ability to score a lot of points, so I can see this game becoming a shootout. The reason I am going with Oregon for this game is that their team is a little more established. They have been more successful more recently. Having said that, the Huskies are no pushovers. Led by Michael Penix Jr, this Washington team seems to be a legit contender for the final PAC-12 crown. The game will go back and forth the whole game, with Oregon putting up the final points with little to no time left for Washignton to counter. Oregon wins a tight game against the Huskies. (Oregon, 45-42)
Final Score: Washington 36 Oregon 33
(10)USC @ (21)Notre Dame
Vaughn Broadnax (OSU 1980-83): We need Notre Dame to step up. Hopefully we won’t be talking about some sort of USC “push”, but Notre Dame redeeming themselves. Notre Dame chews up the Trojans on the ground and through the air 37-34.
Coach Rick: As stated I think defense wins. I have Notre Dame with the better defense and winning this game by 14
Cory: USC is such a puzzling team. We know they have the best quarterback in the nation in Caleb Williams, and we know they’ve got a terrific offense. Yet, they somehow keep playing down to the level of their competition. It would be easy to point the finger at their defense, which has been bad, but their offense has struggled to put away games, as well. For a team many though would contend for a playoff spot, winning by one touchdown over Colorado and needing three overtimes to beat Arizona is not a good look. Notre Dame’s gauntlet of a schedule continues. The Irish are coming off a disappointing loss to a surprisingly good Louisville team, but they are home for the first time since their loss to Ohio State. Despite their two losses, I actually believe Notre Dame to be the more well-rounded team in this game. I think the Irish have been battle-hardened by their schedule, and will put USC into the loss column for the first time this season. Notre Dame 31, USC 27
Dave: USC 28 Notre Dame 21
Gregg: Sam Hartman did not look like a 5th year starter last week against Louisville, but in the end, the Cardinals may prove to be a really strong team. Now the Irish find themselves with two losses and out of the playoff hunt will they be able to keep that fire in their belly. It is no consolation for them that both of there losses came against teams that are unbeaten, and the Trojans come in with a perfect record. Weather is supposed to be bad and I think that will slow down Caleb Williams, and at the same time, Notre Dame’s Audric Estime will have a huge day and lead the Irish for an upset victory. Notre Dame 24 USC 21
John: This is the last in what has been brutal stretch of games for the Irish. This will be a real big test on Marus Freeman’s leadership as a head coach. Having lost two of their last three, the season is dangerously close to coming off the rails. Beat SC, and 10-2 is still a real possibility. Lose, and all of a sudden 7-5 or even 6-6 is in the conversation. With the game in South Bend, I would expect ND to be up for this one. Yes, USC is unbeaten, but they are a typical “what is the defense of which you speak” Pac-12 team. If ND can get a few stops look for them to be in this one at the end. I think the Domers can do just enough at home to pull the upset. Notre Dame 27 USC 24
Josh: The Irish have shown to have a great defense, but have been struggling the last few games on offense. The Trojans offense is all through Caleb Williams, but their defense is susceptible to big plays and yardage. I think the difference in this game last year was that Notre Dame did not have a quarterback like Sam Hartman that can be a difference maker, and the offensive line for Notre Dame is the best USC will have faced. Home game after tow tough road games for the Irish, I think they get the luck and pull the upset over USC. Notre Dame 27 – USC 21.
Steven: The Irish got rattled last week by a pumped Louisville defense. There was little room to run and the Irish coaching staff didn’t seem to trust QB Sam Hartman enough early in the game to balance the offense enough to keep the Cardinal D out of the box. When he was forced to throw, it was under duress and Hartman looked skittish and unsure of himself. Luckily for Hartman and the Irish, they meet Alex Grinch and his bend AND break defense. The question then becomes, can the Notre Dame offense control the clock with the ground game to keep USC QB and Heisman winner Caleb Williams off the field? It probably is the only way the Irish can play spoiler. USC and its porous defense is going to get used sometime this year, I’m not sure if the Irish have enough to do it though. If Notre Dame running back Audric Estime can take over the game it could be close. Run the ball, wind the clock and Notre Dame has a chance. Still not sure they can do it, because as bad as the Trojan defense is, their offense is 4th in the nation. Trojans pull it out, but it may not go quite as expected. USC 28-21
Trout: I think the Irish get destroyed in this game. Notre Dame is reeling after that bad loss to Louisville, and now they have to face one of the best offenses in the country. I can see Caleb Williams torching the Notre Dame defense and racking up a bunch more yards. The only saving grace I see for Notre Dame is that USC has a terrible defense. USC’s defense allowed a mediocre Arizona team to keep up with their offense. It took three overtimes for them to escape with a win. But I still don’t think it will be enough. Notre Dame isn’t in the right headspace. I think after the heartbreaking loss to Ohio State and the embarrassment that was the Louisville game, Notre Dame is a little checked out. The Trojans will take full advantage of that, and win by a large margin. USC wins and hands the Irish their third loss of the season. (USC, 42-17)
Final Score: Notre Dame 48 USC 20
(25)Miami @ (12)North Carolina
Vaughn Broadnax (OSU 1980-83): Miami loses to UNC 31-14.
Coach Rick: This game is a complete toss up. I am not sure how Miami could have lost to Georgia Tech last week. Just based on this game, I have UNC coming out on top by 10 points.
Cory: While the way in which Miami lost was extremely embarrassing, did anybody think the Hurricanes were actually a good team? Their best win so far was over Texas A&M, and that is not saying much. UNC has a couple of good wins over South Carolina, Pitt, and Syracuse, and they’ve got a terrific quarterback in Drake Maye. Maye is completing 72 percent of his passes this season and figures to be a first-round draft pick in April. While Miami’s offense is also decent, with the Hurricanes coming off a terrible loss and that they have to play on the road this week I am giving the edge to UNC. UNC 30, Miami 20
Dave: UNC 31 Miami 21
Gregg: I guess it was appropriate for Miami to have been wearing black uniforms last week against Georgia Tech. They blacked out and snatched defeat out of the jaws of victory. Expect the Tarhills to add to the Hurricane misery. UNC 28 Miami 24
Joe-S-U: North Carolina
John: Last week’s blunder by Cristobal is the kind of mistake that can derail an entire season. It can be tough for a team that snatched defeat from the jaws of victory like that to recover, especially one that has the recent history of failure that the “U” has enjoyed. North Carolina appears to be a team on the rise, and they don’t have the other remaining ACC unbeatens (FSU, Louisville) on the schedule. Get past Miami and there is areal possibility the Tar Heals are playing in the ACC title game in December. North Carolina 30 Miami 20
Josh: Miami ruined what would have been a battle of two undefeated teams, but decided not to take a knee which ended up costing them. I think Drake Maye has been decent this year, but the Tar Heels have not faced anyone of note, and are going against a team that is still hoping to make the ACC championship game. Will the players lose confidence in Cristobal that would impact their play on the field? Not likely, and I think the Canes beat North Carolina on the road. Miami 35 – North Carolina 28
Steven: Miami should be undefeated, and Coach Mario Cristobal owes his team and the fans a huge apology, especially since his run the ball instead of kneeling gaffe is the second time his decision making has cost his team a game. It is at these times where you just wish the QB would be smart enough and empowered enough to do the right thing. Clearly, Hurricane QB Tyler Van Dyke does not have the appropriate football IQ, or didn’t feel like he could go against his coach in a critical game situation. Statistically, the U should give the Tarheels everything they could ask for and more in the game, but after such a boneheaded, crushing loss, it’s hard to think their heads will be right again this season. Thanks coach, you may have cost us a chance to make the playoffs. Going with the coach I trust more, Mack Brown. Drake Maye wins it late for UNC 38-31
Trout: I am picking the Tar Heels. Although Miamai might be better eventually with Cristobal, they are still a bit of a mess. That disaster of an ending last week is proof of that. Although I really don’t know how good UNC is, they are still better than what the Hurricanes are now. I can see the Hurricanes keeping pace with North Carolina for a while, but eventually they will lose steam, and the Tar Heels will pull away. I don’t see it being a clear blowout, but UNC should win by a couple scores. Tar Heels remain unbeaten and stay as one of the front runners for the ACC title. (UNC, 28-14)
Final Score: North Carolina 41 Miami 31
Missouri @ (24)Kentucky
Vaughn Broadnax (OSU 1980-83): Kentucky still can’t find their offense and loses to Missouri 31-14.
Coach Rick: Both teams are coming off their 1st losses last week. I have to go with the home team to rebound faster and get the win by 14.
Cory: Missouri was off to an undefeated start to the season, and looked to have LSU on the ropes last week. That was until LSU scored three touchdowns in the fourth quarter to win 49-39. Missouri must try to rebound quickly as they face Kentucky this week. The Wildcats are coming off a loss of their own – a 51-13 clobbering at the hands of Georgia. Both teams are hoping to get back into the win column this week. While I think Kentucky is a decent team, I am concerned that they’ve been feasting on weak competition so far. Plus, Missouri’s offense can move the ball easily. Quarterback Brady Cook has passed for 1,879 yards with 13 touchdowns while completing 71.8 percent of his passes. It will be close, but I see the upset happening in this one. Missouri 31, Kentucky 30
Dave: Kentucky 28 Missouri 14
Gregg: Neither one of these teams ever really get much attention in the SEC when you have to compete with the likes of Georgia and Tennessee and Alabama and LSU, etc. But both teams had a great start to the year, and both ran into walls last week. The only thing these two teams can do now is play spoiler. However, as they face each other, they are only playing for pride. The Wildcats got beat so bad last week that I think it will actually serve to be double loss for Kentucky and they put up a dud of a game against the Tigers. Missouri 27 Kentucky 17
John: Both teams are coming off of losses, but Kentucky got absolutely destroyed by #1 Georgia while the Tigers were at least competitive with LSU last week. What kind of hangover does Kentucky have this week? I’m sure that the Wildcats have had their manhood questioned all week in practice. Look for KY to come out hot. I think that if Mizzu can survive the first quarter, they are good enough to go into Lexington and get the “W”. Missouri 27 Kentucky 24
Josh: Missouri might have the best chance to challenge the Bulldogs in the SEC East, and Kentucky is trying to rebound after getting beaten soundly by Georgia. I think that Kentucky is stilla. pretender and Missouri will get a win on the road. Missouri 35 – Kentucky 24
Steven: Can Kentucky bounce back after being taken to the woodshed by Georgia. Can Mizzou shake off the sting of losing to LSU, a game they really should have won? Saturday’s game should be about dead even. The line is only slightly in Missouri’s faver, even on the road. I think I like the psyche of the Tigers a bit more than the Wildcats. I think the loss to LSU will just make them mad, whereas the drubbing at the hands of the Dawgs will let doubt creep into the minds of the Wildcats. Mizzou 44-33
Trout: This game is a bit of a toss up for me. I don’t know how good either of these teams are. Both teams are 5-1, and both lost to the “Big Boys” of their conference. If I have to pick, I will go with Kentucky. Granted, they embarrassed themselves against Georgia, but at the same time, it was Georgia. They are still the reigning champions. I just think they are slightly more talented than the Mizzou tigers. Having said that, I would not be surprised if Missouri would pull off the slight upset. The game should be a close one to the very end, with multiple lead changes throughout. The Kentucky WIldcat will be able to score in the last few seconds, and the Tigers will not be able to respond. Kentucky wins in a hard fought battle. (Kentucky, 28-24)