Ohio State vs. Toledo football preview, prediction
Ohio State hosts Toledo in its nonconference finale at Horseshoe in college football’s Week 3 action.
But you still have plenty of time to build your College Football Playoff resume. Showing off in games such as this is a great way to start. Here’s everything you need to know about Saturday’s matchup in the ‘Shoe.
How to watch
When: Sat., Sept. 17
Time: 7 p.m. Eastern
TV: Fox network
Stream: fuboTV (Start your free trial)
Game odds, point spread, betting lines
Line: Ohio State -32
Moneyline: UT 1300 OSU -5000
FPI pick: Ohio State 97.4%
What you need to know
Toledo: The presumptive favorites in the MAC this season – FPI predicts it could win 10 games this year – have outscored opponents 92-10 so far. It’s against overmatched teams but that’s the way you should play in this type of competition. DeQuan Finn is a 61% passer who posts under 8 ypa, but is solid running the ball: he leads Toledo with 138 rushing yards and 3 of the team’s 8 rushing TDs. OSU’s front seven will be annoyed by Finn in the beginning, but Finn won’t get much from it due to a lack skill targets.
Ohio State: College football’s reigning No. The No. 1 offense hasn’t been as dominant as we expected. Jaxon Smith–Njigba isn’t missing much since CJ Stroud hit Marvin Harrison Jr. for 3 touchdowns last week. Harrison and Emeka Egbuka are both over 200 yards while TreVeyon Henderson and Miyan Williams are good for 7.1 and 5.9 ypc, respectively, and should eat against a Toledo line that isn’t great against the run.
Ohio State vs. Toledo: Fast Facts
Ohio State is 32-0 under Ryan Day when scoring 30-plus points
Toledo is 2nd nationally allowing 5.0 points per game
OSU has not allowed a TD in 6 straight quarters, the longest since not allowing one in 8 in 2019
UT is 2nd allowing 58 passing yards per game
Ryan Day offenses are 38-0 when scoring 40-plus points
Toledo is 4th in total defense so far, allowing 183 yards per game
OSU is holding opposing backs to 2. 02 yards per carry, 9th best nationally
Toledo is 0-3 all-time vs. Ohio State
Ohio State has forced punts on 15 of opponents’ 23 possessions (65%)
Toledo is 9-19 all-time against top 25 ranked teams
Ohio State is 1st nationally with a 100% red zone scoring offense
Toledo is 1st in the MAC with 46 ppg and 230 rushing yards per game
OSU is 20-1 at home and 10-3 against non-conference opponents under Day
Toledo has the piece at quarterback to make a lot of decent gainers with his legs early in the game, and he has 2 targets (Jamal Turner and Jerjuan Newton) who post over 20 yards per catch.
And the Rockets are pretty good in the red zone: their 6 scores inside the 20 are 2nd nationally behind Georgia and Clemson. Don’t forget Toledo played a strong Notre Dame team on the road last year, losing by 3 points. This could cause the Buckeyes to fall asleep if they think ahead to next weekend’s Wisconsin game.
JaxonSmith-Njigba’s return to the fold should be enough to keep that from happening.
College Football HQ Prediction: Ohio State 45, Toledo 16
According to AP top 25 poll
- Ohio State
- Oklahoma State
- Michigan State
- NC State
- Wake Forest
- Ole Miss
- Penn State
- Texas A&M
The author of 5 books, 3 of which are New York Times bestsellers. I’ve been published in more than 100 newspapers and magazines and am a frequent commentator on NPR.