RUSH OFFENSE vs. OHIO STATE RUSH DEFENSE
Michigan is #35 in rushing offense (194 yards/game) and #52 in rushing average (4.64 yards/carry). Starter Karan Higdon has been hampered by an ankle injury over the past couple weeks and managed just 7 attempts for 20 yards last week against Wisconsin. With Ty Isaac working through an injury, Michigan’s three-man rotation was largely limited to Chris Evans (11 carries for 25 yards last week). Michigan is #20 in Adjusted Line Yards and #49 in Standard Down Line Yards. The line had been playing better for a few weeks, but the Wisconsin game saw the lowest yards per carry (1.57) all season, as well as the lowest rushing output (58 yards), with the previous low being 102 against Michigan State. Ohio State is #12 in rushing defense (114 yards allowed/game), and they allow the 10th fewest yards per carry (3.16). Their defense is actually #1 in Adjusted Line Yards and #4 in Standard Down Line Yards, so they’re very stout up front with a lot of guys they can rotate in as part of the front four. They’re #8 in tackles for loss with defense ends Nick Bosa (6’4″, 270 lbs.) and Sam Hubbard (6’5″, 265) leading the way with 11.5 and 7.5, respectively. Somewhat surprisingly, Ohio State’s top two tacklers are safeties Jordan Fuller (6’2″, 207) with 54 and Damon Webb (5’11”, 195) with 49. The last time Ohio State’s leading tackler wasn’t a linebacker and the last time when the leading tackler didn’t have 100 tackles was in 2011, when safety C.J. Barnett led the squad with 75 tackles. The Buckeyes have some quality linebackers, but they don’t have a dominant player like Ryan Shazier or Raekwon McMillan.
Advantage: Ohio State
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