Ohio St and USC will be playing in the 2017 Cotton Bowl, a conciliation prize to getting that coveted 4th spot in the college football playoff. That being said this will be the last game for long time Ohio St QB JT Barrett and most likely USC QB Sam Darnold. I say most likely for Darnold for 2 reasons, the first being that he will by all accounts declare for the NFL Draft after this season and the second reason is that like previous college stars before him he might sit out of this game and protect himself from getting hurt.
Trojans vs. Buckeyes Viewing Details
Date: Friday, December 29, 2017
Time: 8:30 PM EST
TV Channel: ESPN
Location: AT&T Stadium; Arlington, TX
The Trojans are coming off a big win in the Pac-12 Championship game defeating Stanford 31-28. USC went 11-2 this year including 2 wins over Stanford and another over Texas but they did have 2 tough losses on the road against Washington St and Notre Dame. If Darnold plays all bets are off and if he doesn’t its the same deal. I do expect him to play thou and give the Trojans a chance. They don’t have much of a running game between the lack of blocking, wanting the ball in Darnolds hands, and Injuries. If USC wants to have a chance they will have to develop some kind of running game against this vaunting Buckeyes Defense.
The Buckeyes were conference champs as well defeating an undefeated Wisconsin team 27-21 in an all time classic. Ohio St is led by coach Urban Meyer and QB JT Barrett who feel like he’s been in college for like 10 years. This will be the last game together for Meyer and Barrett who have put together another really great season going 11-2 with a wins over Wisconsin, Auburn and Penn State who are all ranked inside the Top 10. The reason Ohio St is in the Cotton Bowl and not the College Football Playoff is because they had a 31 point loss to Iowa. Despite that awful loss Ohio St felt like like still should have made it in over Alabama, regardless theres nothing they can do now and have their full attention on USC. Ohio St’s defensive line is what really controls games, led by NFL Rookie of the Year Joey Bosa’s little brother Nick Bosa they can disrupt any teams run game and get significant pressure on QBs with only 4 man rush.
Assuming Darnold plays… I predict that the final score will be
Ohio St 38 USC 27.
Ohio St will cover the 6.5 points and the game will go over the 64.5 total points