Ohio State vs Iowa Odds, Picks, Predictions | Saturday College Football Betting Guide
Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Iowa cornerback Riley Moss.
Ohio State vs Iowa Odds
|Ohio State Odds|
-110o / -110u
-110o / -110u
Ohio State looks to stay undefeated when it hosts Iowa in Columbus on Saturday.
The last time the Hawkeyes were in action, they lost a heartbreaker to Illinois in Champaign, 9-6. The loss dropped Iowa to 3-3 on the season with prospects of trying to defend their Big Ten West title starting to flee.
Ohio State is coming off of a bye, and it's on cruise control right now. The Buckeyes have scored 150 points in their three conference games this season, and Ryan Day will no doubt be reminding the Buckeyes what happened to them the last time these two met in 2017.
This Day in @HawkeyeFootball History – Nov. 4, 2017
WOODSHED, IA 52242
The #Hawkeyes crush #3 Ohio State 55-24 in Iowa City. @amanihooker37 opens the game w/pick six. @TheeHOCK8 goes 5 for 71 & 2 TD's. @nrfant goes 4 for 54 & 2 TD's. @akrum_wadley 158 total yds.@LegacyHawkspic.twitter.com/Cri5EkNrTx
— HawkeyesChronicles (@HawksChronicles) November 4, 2019
CJ Stroud is now the favorite to win the Heisman Trophy, and it's easy to see why. He's put up a whopping 10.9 yards per pass attempt, owns an 84.7 PFF passing grade and has thrown for 24 touchdowns and three interceptions.
However, he's due to turn the ball over because even though Stroud has gaudy touchdown numbers, he has 10 big-time throws and seven turnover-worthy plays this season. This Iowa secondary is not the unit to be taking chances against.
While Stroud has all of the talent in the world, it also helps to have the best wide receiver in college football in Jaxon Smith-Njigba and Marvin Harrison Jr. to throw to.
But if you go through Ohio State's opponents, it hasn't faced a secondary in the same stratosphere as Iowa.
Ohio State does have a good rushing attack with the running back trio of Miyan Williams, TreVeyon Henderson and Dallan Hayden, as it ranks fifth in Rushing Success Rate, first in Offensive Line Yards and 11th in EPA/Rush.
However, once again, this is the best front seven it's seen all season.
The Ohio State defense has been really good this season, allowing only 4.3 yards per play (8th in FBS) while ranking third in Success Rate Allowed and seventh in EPA/Play Allowed.
The biggest thing for Ohio State in this game is its ability to generate a pass rush. The Buckeyes already have 14 sacks on the season and the 11th-best pass-rushing grade, per PFF. That's huge going up against the second-worst pass-blocking unit in college football.
The Buckeyes' front seven has done an incredible job stopping the run, allowing only 3.0 yards per carry and ranking fourth in Rushing Success Rate Allowed, and sixth in Defensive Line Yards. I don't know how Iowa is going to be able to run the ball if it can't block Ohio State up front.
It doesn't get any easier throwing the ball either, as Ohio State sits second nationally in Passing Success Rate Allowed, 23rd in EPA/Pass Allowed and has the 24th-best coverage grade, per PFF.
Iowa's offense is one of the worst in the Power Five.
Spencer Petras had very quietly registered solid performances in back-to-back games against Rutgers and Michigan, putting up a PFF passing grade over 84 in both contests. However, he fell back down to earth against Illinois, going 18-of-36 for 145 yards and an interception.
Petras is not the reason Iowa's offense is as bad as it is. Iowa's biggest Achilles' heel this season has been the offensive line. The unit ranks 130th in pass blocking, 72nd in run blocking and 124th in Offensive Line Yards. With how bad the offensive line has been, Petras has been under pressure on 37.5% of his dropbacks, which is one of the highest marks in college football.
Iowa's run game has struggled behind the offensive line. The Hawkeyes' running backs haven't found much room to run and are averaging only 3.8 yards per carry.
Iowa has the best defensive grade in college football at 93.9, per PFF. The Hawkeyes are allowing only 4.0 yards per play while ranking second in EPA/Play and first in explosiveness allowed.
To score on the Hawkeyes, teams have to move four yards at a time. If they're not prepared to play that way, Iowa will punish them.
Iowa has shut down opposing running backs this season, allowing only 3.4 yards per carry and ranking first in rushing explosiveness allowed. The best rushing attack Iowa has faced was Michigan, and it put up just 4.1 yards per carry.
It helps when you have one of the best linebacking duos in the country in Jack Campbell and Seth Benson, which is the reason Iowa has the eighth-best tackling grade, per PFF.
The Iowa secondary is once again one of the top units in the country. The Hawkeyes are one of only two teams in college football to allow under 5.0 yards per attempt to opposing quarterbacks.
Along with reigning Big Ten Defensive Back of the Year Riley Moss, Cooper DeJean and Terry Roberts have been tremendous. They've combined to allow a 45% reception rate on 3.69 yards per target to go along with eight pass breakups and four interceptions on the season.
COOPER DEJEAN CROSS COUNTRY PICK 6! pic.twitter.com/7ol7nLY35N
— Heavens!👻 (@HeavensFX) September 24, 2022
Iowa grades out as the best coverage unit in the country, per PFF, and ranks seventh in Passing Success Rate Allowed and sixth in EPA/Pass allowed.
Iowa also has one of the best punters in the country in Tory Taylor. He's already downed 21 punts inside the 20-yard line (most in FBS), and opposing returners are averaging just 2.5 yards per punt return. Taylor had led Iowa to the top spot in average starting field position on defense.
Ohio State vs Iowa Matchup Analysis
Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Ohio State and Iowa match up statistically:
Iowa Offense vs. Ohio State Defense
|** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)|
Ohio State Offense vs. Iowa Defense
|** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)|
Pace of Play / Other
|SP+ Special Teams||9||93|
|Seconds per Play||28.5 (110)||27.9 (98)|
|Rush Rate||53.7% (65)||56.4% (44)|
Data via CollegeFootballData.com (CFBD), FootballOutsiders, SP+, Pro Football Focus and SportSource Analytics.
Ohio State vs Iowa Betting Pick
These two teams are playing incredibly slow this season with Iowa at 28.5 seconds per play (110th in FBS) and Ohio State at 27.9 seconds per play (98th in FBS).
Plus, you have two top-10 defenses going at each other, with Iowa's offense being one of the worst in the Power Five and Ohio State finally facing an elite secondary.
I only have 40.8 points projected for this game, so I like the value on under 49.5 points.