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Fiesta Bowl Preview – #7 Ohio State vs #8 Notre Dame

Fiesta Bowl Preview - #7 Ohio State vs #8 Notre Dame

University Of Phoenix Stadium – The Fiesta Bowl Glendale, AZ

FRIDAY, JAN. 1, 2016; 1:00 p.m. EST

#7 Ohio State

Vs.

#8 Notre Dame

Line: OHIO STATE -6½

OVER/UNDER: 53½

The Ohio State Buckeyes offense led the Big Ten in rushing (241.9) and finished second or third in total offense (428.9), scoring (35.0), scoring defense (14.0), pass efficiency (141.8) and opponent first downs (16.0).

The Ohio State Buckeyes defense allowed just 14.0 points per game this season, the second fewest in the FBS. Since the week 7 win over Penn State, the Buckeyes have surrendered just 10.7 points per game (64 total points), the fewest in the FBS. The unit has allowed just one rushing touchdowns over the last six games.

Ohio State third year bull like running back Ezekiel Elliott had rushed for at least 100 yards in 15 straight games dating to last season until the streak was snapped Nov. 21 vs. Michigan State. The streak included the school’s first streak of three games with 200+ rushing yards in three postseason wins over Wisconsin, Alabama and Oregon last season.

In the Buckeyes last 6 encounters, passer J.T. Barrett has accounted for a total of 19 touchdowns (11 rushing, 8 passing).

The Buckeye stop unit has been dominant this season, allowing only 14.0 points per game, the second fewest in the FBS. Since the week 7 win over Penn State, the Buckeyes have been stingy giving up just 10.7 points per game (64 total points), the fewest in the FBS during that period of time.

Like the Buckeyes of the horse shoe state, the Notre Fighting Irish love to run the pigskin. Notre Dame has run the ball at least 30 times in each of its 12 games in 2015, going 10-2 to date. He Fighting Irish have a lot more depth at this particular skilled position than the Buckeyes. Five Notre Dame players (Adams, Kizer, Prosise, Wimbush and Zaire) have runs of at least 25 yards this year while six Irish players (Chris Brown, Amir Carlisle, Will Fuller, Alizé Jones, Torii Hunter Jr. and Prosise) have a reception of at least 25 yards.

Notre Dame’s multi-talented DeShone Kizer can either pass, run or hand which makes it very difficult for any defense to defend.

Speaking about defenses, the Irish defense has allowed 2 offensive touchdowns or less in 37 its last 67 games. The Irish have actually allowed one offensive TD or less in 25 of those outings, including 19 of the last 51 games.

Notre Dame has allowed an average of 21.26 points/game over the last six seasons combined, which ranks as the 16th-best average over 2010-15 of any team in the Football Bowl Subdivision.

Trends:

WHEN PLAYING AGAINST A TEAM WITH A WINNING RECORD NOTRE DAME IS 5 AND 1 THIS SEASON.

Selection: Notre Dame +6½

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December 30, 2015: posted in News And Reviews No Comments

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