Week 10 Predictions – 2023
Last Week: Ohio State once again passed a tough road test, defeating Wisconsin 24-10. At times the offense looked a bit shaky but they did more than enough to get the victory over a very solid team. And just like they have all season, the defense played like a team that deserves a championship. The performance secured the #1 ranking for the Buckeyes in the first playoff poll of 2023. Like the Scarlet and Gray, our Buckeye50 staff picks were top notch as well with our predictions as eight went 4-1, three were 3-2 so we are in playoff form as well. Of course Steve, the ESPN Gameday ‘expert’ is 14-24-2 this year, just saying. Keep an eye on our standings, not theirs. Steve also says OSU is not the best team in the country, but what does he know?
This Week’s Games: As Ohio State heads to New Jersey to take on the Scarlet Knights, they travel with the label of the #1 team in the country. Will Rutgers be able to play the role of spoiler? …. Texas has another challenging game as they face Kansas State. The two teams are both among the five schools in a tie for first place in the Big 12. The winner of this game will have fate in their own hands to play in the conference championship. …. Missouri comes in to Athens to be the next team to try to halt the longest winning streak in college football. Do they have enough talent to escape the hedges with a win? …. It seems like we are watching the Trojans every week and this week is no different. They return to the Coliseum, to take on the 1st place Huskies. Will they give Washington their first loss on the year? …. The SEC West could be decided today as Alabama and LSU face off. Can the Tide generate enough offense to win over the Tigers.
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 10 Picks – Good Luck to All – Gregg
(1)Ohio State(-18.5) @ Rutgers
Vaughn Broadnax (OSU 1980-83): Greg Schiano has elevated Rutgers football for the second time around. With the added dimension of playing against someone who fired you, there will be some added intrigue. However, the Buckeyes are getting their horses back into the fold, and the could mean a long day the Scarlet Knights. Ohio State must correct its quarterback issues, and there are issues. Rutgers will capitalize on those issues. They will also try to exploit weaknesses in our special teams play. Be on the lookout should we have to punt or allow them to kick a field goal. Buckeyes beat the Scarlet Knights 42-10.
Coach Rick: Hats off to Rutgers for the season they are having. The problem they have this weekend is that OSU needs style points in their victories, so I have OSU winning by 24.
Cory: At 6-2 Rutgers is already bowl eligible, which is an impressive start for the Scarlet Knights. That said, those six wins have come against a fairly easy schedule. The only two quality teams they’ve played so far we Michigan and Wisconsin and they lost both of those games. Rutgers does not have much of an offense – quarterback Gavin Wimsatt is completing just 50 percent of his passes and has taken as many sacks as he has touchdown passes (7). The Buckeyes have been notorious for slow starts this season, and the ankle injury to Kyle McCord is a bit concerning, but expect Ohio State to pull away comfortably. Ohio State 31, Rutgers 14
Dave: Ohio State 42 Rutgers 14
Gregg: For the third time this season, Ohio State plays a team coached by a former Buckeye player/coach. There could have been fourth if Mel Tucker was still around at Michigan State. It truly shows the footprint the school has over the conference and college football. But Rutgers coach Greg Schiano is not looking to pay tribute to this team, he wants a signature win. The Knights are 6-2 and a very solid program, but they just don’t have the horses and the depth to be favored in this game. It should be a great game to watch as a fun but in reality, Ohio State needs this game more than Rutgers. As the #1 team in the country, they ar expected to win. I saw a stat this week showing that only Ohio State and Alabama have been in all 55 playoff polls to date. That takes a lot of consistency and support for a program to do that. Ohio State needs to make as statement win today and move on to next week. I think this one is close in the first half but as the game wears on, Rutgers will wear down and the Buckeyes take over. Ohio State 41 Rutgers 17
Joe-S-U: Ohio State
John: Ohio State
Josh: The number 1 Buckeyes will put their ranking to the rest against Greg Schiano, who has always has something up his sleeve with trick plays on special teams, and an offensive play or two that forces the defense to stay honest. They have been one of the better defenses in the country, and are bowl eligible, but Ohio State has Marvin Harrison Jr, who is on a warpath to earn finalist recognition for the Heisman and Biletnikoff. The only worry for Ohio State will be the health of Kyle McCord, who is playing through an ankle injury, and looked rough the last quarter against Wisconsin. I see this game being close for the first quarter, but if Ohio State can get Emeka Egbuka back, and TreVeyon Henderson plays with the same effort as he did last week, the Buckeyes should be able to control the game, and limit Rutgers who is without their top receiver. Ohio State 38 – Rutgers 7.
Steven: As maligned as OSU’s offense has been, it is still outpacing Rutgers to the tune of 100 more yards per contest. Ohio State’s defense should be able to shine. In fact, both defenses should do well. As one would expect with a Greg Schiano coached team, Rutgers is top 10 in scoring defense and top 15 in total defense. They are at least statistically better than Wisconsin, and Wisky played us tough last week, so the offensive effort and execution will have to be as good, or better than last Saturday’s. At least Piscataway is a much less daunting environment compared to Camp Randall Stadium in Madison. I’m not sure Rutgers scores much on this defense. OSU 31-6.
Trout: I am picking the Buckeyes. I do believe Rutgers is on the right track, and that they are a better team this year, however, they do not match up talentwise to Ohio State. I can see the game being close to start with. Especially because more often than not, the Buckeyes start slow. But towards the end of the half, I can see the Buckeyes pulling away and winning by a few scores. I don’t see it being a blowout, because the Scarlet Knights are an improved team, but there shouldn’t be a doubt that the Buckeyes are the better team. Ohio State wins comfortably. (Ohio State, 38-14)
Final Score: Ohio State 35 Rutgers 16
(23)Kansas State @ (7)Texas (-3.5)
Vaughn Broadnax (OSU 1980-83): With Quinn Ewers out the Longhorns are a peg down offensively. Kansas State plays well at home. Unfortunately for them the game is in Austin. Texas over Kansas State 33-21.
Coach Rick: I see this as two identical teams. Kansas State has the edge rushing while Texas has the edge passing. I feel this will be a high scoring game and in the end, I have Texas winning by 3.
Cory: Maalik Murphy may not be Quinn Ewers, but he does not need to be. Murphy was good enough against BYU as he completed 16 of 25 passes for 170 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. The Texas defense also impressed as they limited BYU to six points. I think Kansas State is a bit underrated, but my concern with the Wildcats is quarterback Will Howard. He’s got seven interceptions and he’s been sacked 10 times. This Longhorn defense will feast upon Howard if he continues to make mistakes like that. Texas 30, Kansas State 20
Dave: Texas 28 Kansas St 10
Gregg: Kansas State’s head coach Chris Klieman is in his 6th season in Manhattan and Texas is the only Big 12 team he has not beaten since being hired. But I am having a hard time figuring out why the Longhorns are such a popular favorite. The Wildcats have scored more points than Texas and given up fewer points so far this season. Add the fact that Quinn Ewers is not supposed to be back for this game, is this a perfect storm for KSU to get an huge upset win? The Longhorns dominated BYU last week without Ewers but they Cougars do not have the defense they will see in this game. Can probably go ahead and mark me down for a miss on this one but I will go with the Wildcats. Kansas State 27 Texas 24
Josh: Texas looked a little shaky on offense with Maalik Murphy last week, but their defense is the true story for the Longhorns success this season. Kansas State has been solid this year, coming in at 23 in the first CFP playoff rankings, but I think the Longhorns at home will take care of business, and continue to climb towards a berth for their final Big 12 Championship Game. Texas 27 – Kansas State 17
Steven: Can backup Texas QB Maalik Murphy do it again? Last week against the BYU Cougars, Murphy was OK, if not incredible, passing for 170 yards, 2 TDs and an INT. With solid run support, Texas ran over BYU 35-6. KSU should prove to be a slightly stiffer test, as their offense is 15th in the nation as opposed to BYU’s 125th ranking. This should be tight, but let’s say the Longhorns hold serve, (but will freely admit this one screams tossup). ‘Horns 31-24
Trout: I will have to go with the Longhorns. Washington State has played spoiler in previous seasons, so they could surprise Texas with a game. However, I don’t think they will have enough to compete with Texas in all four quarters. The Wildcats are a good team, but I don’t think they are a great team. And although I am skeptical of Texas “being back”, I do believe they are the better team of the two. Texas should be able to pull off the victory. Kansas State will hang with them for a while, but Texas pulls away towards the end of the second half. (Texas, 35-24)
Final Score: Texas 33 Kansas State 30 (OT)
(12)Missouri @ (2)Georgia
Vaughn Broadnax (OSU 1980-83): Georgia proved that even without Brock Bowers they are quite formidable offensively. Add to that a defense that can shut down offenses and make it look easy. Playing on their home field, I am giving Georgia a 41-14 victory over Mizzou.
Coach Rick: Defenses wins championships, and neither team has a championship defense at this time. I do have Georgia winning, but only by 7 in a high scoring game.
Cory: Is there a team that has flown more under the radar than Missouri? The Tigers are 7-1 and have some quality wins over Kentucky and Kansas State. Well, I suppose we’ll find out just how real they are this week when they play at Georgia. The Bulldogs are coming off a dominating performance over Florida and look like they are finally starting to hit their stride this season. My concern with Missouri is the same as with Kansas State – the quarterback gets away with mistakes. Brady Cook only has thrown interceptions, but he’s been sacked 14 times and he does not have the benefit of a strong running game to help balance things out. Missouri is very one-dimensional, and that will make it easy for the Georgia defense to focus on stopping Cook. Georgia 31-10
Dave: Georgia 32 Missouri 24
Gregg: Georgia is not happy to ranked #2 in the playoff poll this week and they will take it out on the Tigers. Missouri may have no more than 3 players on their squad that would start for the Bulldogs. Nice season so far for Missouri but this game is the big leagues and they are still not there. Georgia with another solid victory. Georgia 44 Missouri 17
Josh: Georgia comes in as the second ranked team in the first CFP, and I am sure Kirby Smart is running with that for the Bulldogs as motivation, despite being undefeated on a 25-game win streak, and two-time defending champion. Last year, Missouri was close to beating the Bulldogs, and lost in the last quarter due to the heroics of Stetson Bennett. The Bulldogs proved last week that they are still one of the best teams against a deflated Florida team, and Missouri will be without their top linebacker. I think this one is actually close, as Missouri has a better offense than they did last year, but in the end, Georgia wins at home. Georgia 31 – Missouri 28
Steven: Missouri has played Georgia tough over the past couple of seasons. Past experience should not be used to predict future performance. Georgia is too good, especially at home. Both the Dawgs and Tigers sport some decent offensive numbers. It is Georgia’s defense that should be the deciding factor. Georgia should be able to force Missouri into a few more empty possessions. The Dawgs will come out angry after being ranked behind Ohio State in the first CFP poll of the season. Georgia 43-17
Trout: The Mizzou Tigers are actually having a decent year. I could see them at least challenging the Bulldogs for a while. However, they will not win. Georgia is just too good. Granted, I think they are a step down from last year’s team, but they are still one of the best teams in the country this year. I believe Georgia will start pulling away after a while, and Missouri won’t be able to keep up. The Bulldogs will dominate the second half, leading them to another comfortable victory. Mizzou puts up a fight early, but the Bulldogs prove to be too much for them. (Georgia, 42-20)
Final Score: Georgia 30 Missouri 21
(5)Washington(-3) @ (20)USC
Vaughn Broadnax (OSU 1980-83): Expect Washington and USC to combine for more 100 points this weekend. Caleb Williams can only hope to resuscitate his Heisman hope with an upset victory over the Huskies and Michael Penix. I think he does and USC upsets Washington 51-49.
Coach Rick: Washington has been barely winning this last couple of weeks and has come out on top, but I think that ends this weekend. I have USC winning by 7 with the home crowd helping in the victory.
Cory: USC may not be legit this season, but this game should still provide plenty of fireworks. With two of the top quarterbacks in the Heisman race – Michael Penix at Washington and Caleb Williams at USC – this game will be fun to watch. It seems we say this every week, but the problem with USC is their defense. They gave up 49 points to Cal last week and were a failed two-point conversion away from losing a third consecutive game. Washington is a more well-rounded team so I expect them to come out strong despite looking inconsistent since their win over Oregon. Washington 42, USC 35
Dave: Washington 28 USC 21
Gregg: This game we find out if USC has any pride left. They have the talent to win this game but can they make it happen on the field. They are still only one game behind Washington in the conference standings. But the last four weeks have very bad for the Trojans. They only beat Arizona by 2 points, then they lost to Notre Dame and Utah. And last week they gave up 49 points and only won by stopping a 2-point conversion attempt. USC can still win the Pac 12 but that is all that is left on the table for a season that started, thinking they were a playoff team and repeat Heisman winner. Caleb Williams needs this game to show NFL teams his character. I will probably regard this pick because I don’t think Williams is man enough to lead this team anymore but I will pick the Trojans. Take the over (76.0), and watch the scoreboard operator get at least 20,000 steps on his Fitbit. USC 52 Washington 49
Josh: Washington has looked shaky the last two weeks, and they have not played the toughest competition. USC already has 2 losses and has a very slim chance of making the PAC-12 Championship, but their defense has more holes than swiss cheese. I expect this one to be a high scoring affair, and if you are a betting person, bet the over. I think USC pulls off the upset at home as Caleb Williams tries to still showcase his draft stock and athleticism in hopes to salvage a lost season. USC 56 – Washington 49
Steven: I’m not sure if anyone believes this will be anything other than a USC bloodletting. USC’s offense may be able to keep up with Washington’s, but the Trojan defense is dreadful, and should get Defensive Coordinator Alex Grinch fired, and maybe excommunicated from the state of California. Washington Husky QB Michael Penix Jr. could have a breakout day, enough to put him back into Heisman contention. U-Dub 44-24
Trout: Washington wins this game. I am done picking USC. I gave them the benefit of the doubt for weeks, thinking Caleb Williams was going to lead the Trojans through the tough stretch of their schedule. Instead we got an embarrassing loss to Notre Dame, another loss to Utah (without their starting QB), and then they almost lost to Cal. This team is done. Their only saving grace is that they can score points quickly. I think Washington, led by Michael Penix should be able to match the Trojans offensive output, and at some point in the game, exceed it. The Huskies, led by Michael Penix Jr will be able to get ahead of USC and pull off the victory. Washington remains undefeated while serving the Trojans their third loss of the season. (Washington, 45-35)
Final Score: Washington 52 USC 42
(14)LSU @ (8)Alabama
Vaughn Broadnax (OSU 1980-83): Alabama is playing at home an seem to have found a semblance of offense. LSU has its offense but can’t find a defense to save their lives. Alabama 35-24 over the LSU Tigers.
Coach Rick: This is going to be a high scoring game as well. I thought that Alabama was going to have a bad year, but they are hanging in there and will win this weekend by 10.
Cory: Is LSU getting stronger as the season goes on, just like they did last year? The Tigers have won six of seven since losing to Florida State in the opener, with the other loss coming to Ole Miss. LSU can certainly move the football – quarterback Jayden Daniels is completing 73.1 percent of his passes with 25 touchdowns and just three interceptions. However, this week they are facing the strongest defense on their schedule so far in Alabama. The Crimson Tide limited the same Ole Miss team that put up 55 points on LSU to just 10 points. I’m not 100 percent confident in Alabama’s offense, but remember that the Tigers won this matchup last year and I expect the Crimson Tide to enter this game hungry for revenge. Alabama 28, LSU 24
Dave: Alabama 28 LSU 14
Gregg: Saban does not lose to LSU, and I am a firm believer that the conference will not let the Tide lose, not saying the refs will make bad calls (yes I am!). Alabama is the best second half team in the country, they win a yawner. Alabama 24 LSU 10
Josh: This is one of the biggest games of the weekend, and the GameDay site for the game of the week. Alabama has been looking better and better since their loss to Texas. Add that to the fact that the Crimson Tide are in striking distance for the College Football Playoff if they win out. LSU has one of the favorites for the Heisman in quarterback Jayden Daniels, and one of the best offenses in the country. He has already thrown for over 2500 yards, and 25 touchdowns. They do have two losses to Ole Miss and Florida State at the beginning of the year, but with a bye week before this game, they will have the edge despite this being one of the better defenses Saban has had. I think LSU upsets Alabama. LSU 49 – Alabama 42
Steven: After being moribund for the first 3 games of the season, Alabama has come back, and once again looks to be the class of the SEC West division. This one’s for all the marbles and the chance at the SEC championship. Whoever comes out of this one should be favored in the last 4 games of the season, even counting Alabama’s traditional tilt with Auburn in the Iron Bowl and LSU’s last game against Texas A&M. Gotta go with Darth Saban on this one. Alabama beats LSU on coaching alone. The Tide may not roll, but they should win a close one, 28-24.
Trout: I think the Crimson Tide will win this game, but it’s close. I don’t really know how good each team really is. LSU seems to have bounced back from their humiliating defeat by Florida State to start their year. However, they really haven’t played anyone since then, besides Ole Miss, and they lost that one. Alabama on the other hand has been able to pull off decent victories against Ole Miss and Tennessee, but they haven’t looked overly dominant in those games. So having to pick between the two, I had to go with Alabama. I think they are slightly the better team. I can see the game being pretty close all the way until the end. From there, Alabama finds a way to pull ahead and maintain the lead for the rest of the game. Alabama wins in a hard fought battle, and keeps their outside playoff chances alive. (Alabama, 28-24)