This article is part of our College Football Picks series.
Maryland vs. Ohio State Betting Odds, Picks, and Predictions for Week 12
This matchup features schools in states where sports betting is set to launch soon. For Maryland residents, you can sign up at BetMGM using the BetMGM Maryland Bonus Code with sports betting going live on Wednesday. Ohio residents can get ahead of the game with the BetMGM Ohio Bonus Code as the Buckeye State is soon to follow Maryland with its sports betting launch.
After falling short of its massive expectations last season, Ohio State is one of four remaining undefeated teams in the country and has been a mainstay in the College Football Playoff conversation. While the Buckeyes looked like their usual unstoppable selves during their 56-14 blowout against Indiana last week, they have been accused of just going through the motions in some games this season. With the de facto Big Ten Championship at home against archrival Michigan next week, could Ohio State get caught sleeping on the road?
With a high-scoring offense and a seemingly complementary defense, the Terrapins started the season looking like they might need to be taken seriously as legitimate contenders in the Big Ten. But, Maryland has been outscored 53-10 over their past two contests, as the team's traditional struggles in the month of November haven't gone away in 2022. Now at 6-4, the Terrapins will look to resurrect the memories of the last time they played the Buckeyes in College Park, when they pushed the Big Ten heavyweights to the absolute brink with a 52-51 overtime thriller for the ages.
Maryland residents can sign up at DraftKings with the DraftKings Maryland Promo Code to get $200 in free bets. And if you're in Ohio, take advantage of the DraftKings Ohio Promo Code for a pre-live offer.
Maryland vs. Ohio State Odds for Week 12
Spread: Ohio State -26.5 (-110 FanDuel Sportsbook), Maryland +27.5 (-110 BetMGM Sportsbook)
Total: 63.5 (-110 BetMGM Sportsbook)
Moneyline: Ohio State -4000 (DraftKings Sportsbook); Maryland +1800 (Caesar's Sportsbook)
The spread and total for this matchup have not swayed by more than one point since opening Sunday. Outside of the FanDuel markets, the moneyline movements haven't eclipsed more than 200 to 300, and, when the odds are in the thousands on both sides of this matchup, wobbles in the hundreds won't affect many final betting decisions.
The Buckeyes are 5-4-1 ATS this season with the over hitting in seven games, whereas the Terrapins have an identical 4-6 record against both the spread and the over/under mark this season.
Maryland vs. Ohio State Betting Picks This Week
For most teams, even a lot of really good teams, a four-touchdown spread is just too many points to cover. Not so for this Ohio State team. The Buckeyes rank first nationally with 46.8 points per game against FBS opponents. The passing offense, even without preseason-Biletnikoff-Award-favorite Jaxon Smith-Njigba, has been dominant due to the emergence of up-and-coming superstar Marvin Harrison. While the defense hasn't shown the same other-worldly potential as the offense, the scoring results are there, allowing the seventh-lowest points per game in the country at 16.1.
The Terrapins haven't had much to hang their hats on when it comes to either side of the ball recently. An offense that started the season averaging 30.8 points per game has come away with just 10 points over the past two weeks. Meanwhile, the defense has allowed 5.6 yards per play while forcing just one turnover during this span. It's felt like a lot of the same issues for Mike Locksley's program over the past few years. They've gotten off to strong starts only to be worn down by a grueling schedule in the powerhouse-packed Big Ten East. In fact, since joining the Big Ten in 2014, Maryland has the worst record against the spread in conference play of any team in the nation at 26-46.
Stopping this late-season slide against Ohio State, of all teams, feels pretty unrealistic, and with a bowl berth already secured, Maryland won't have much to play for other than pride. But, with a massive matchup against the Wolverines on the horizon, what do the Buckeyes have to play for? It's simple: add to quarterback C.J. Stroud's Heisman resume while also putting up style points for the College Football Playoff committee. Another statistically dominant performance against an overmatched opponent should do both of these things.
Maryland vs. Ohio State Best Bet: Ohio State -26.5 at FanDuel Sportsbook
Maryland vs. Ohio State Prediction
The biggest factor for Ohio State probably won't be who they're lining up against, but rather who they'll have available. While the unavailability of Smith-Njigba hasn't affected the Buckeyes' passing game, they are dealing with some significant injuries at running back. Big-play generator TreVeyon Henderson has been sidelined for the past two games, and downhill bruiser Miyan Williams, who rushed for a school-record five touchdowns against Rutgers in Week 5, had to be carted off with a leg injury against Indiana last week.
However, head coach Ryan Day expressed a lot of optimism earlier in the week about the availability of his top two rushers, as well as junior back DeaMonte Trayanum, when he said, "Maybe one of them won't, but I'd be shocked if all three would not be available," according to Andrew Lind of SI.com. Williams will not play, but Henderson is set to suit up. Maryland's defense has been slightly below average in conference play, allowing 6.6 yards per attempt and a 63.7 completion percentage to go along with 4.31 yards per carry. This doesn't bode well when facing what is by far the Big Ten's most explosive offense, averaging 7.24 yards per play against conference opponents.
One of the primary reasons that Maryland has been dominated by their last two opponents – other than playing in monsoon-weather conditions versus Wisconsin and having a clear disadvantage in game-changing talent compared to Penn State – is that quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa was under constant duress. The 5-foot-11 signal-caller was already banged-up with injuries early in the season, only to be sacked five times by the Badgers and then seven more times by the Nittany Lions. Protecting their mobile signal-caller in passing situations has been a major flaw for this Terrapins offense, allowing him to be sacked on 13.3 percent of passing-down dropbacks, which ranks 124th nationally, according to FootballOutsiders.com.
The Buckeyes defense has had its warts, but heating up opposing quarterbacks has not been one of them. Ohio State's pass rush ranks 29th in sack rate during all non-garbage time passing attempts at 7.8 percent, per FootballOutsiders.com. This only figures to get worse if the Terrapins are left playing catch-up on offense. Playing at a slow and steady pace with the running game isn't something Maryland does great either. The team sits smack dab in the middle of the road with 154.3 yards per game, which ranks 65th in the FBS.
Both Ohio State and Maryland have been good at keeping opponents from scoring late, allowing 5.8 and eight points per game in the second half this season, respectively. With the Buckeyes likely to light it up in the first half, any first-half spread under 17 points feels like really good value to me. I also wouldn't be surprised if they turn to their reserves late in the third quarter. The Terrapins might keep their starters out there for a little while longer, but who knows how much they'll be able to accomplish even against Ohio State's second-stringers, who could probably compete for starting jobs with most other teams.
Final Score: Ohio State 49, Maryland 10
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