The Oregon Ducks won convincingly over the Florida State Seminoles on New Year’s Day as the favorites. The Ohio State Buckeyes, on the other hand, turned a lot of heads when they upset the heavily favored Alabama Crimson Tide to enter the the National Championship game. Can the Buckeyes spring one of the biggest surprises this season? Or will the Ducks bee too difficult to stop?
To answer those questions for you, we’ve compiled expert picks from some of the best minds across the internet below. For our take on the explosive conclusion to the college football season, you can check out our complete preview of Ohio State vs. Oregon here.[sc:NCAAFArticles ]
Expert Picks for the 2015 College Football Championship
|OddsShark.com||-6 ORE||Ohio State|
|Tyler Conway||-6.5 ORE||Oregon|
|Donald Wood||-6.5 ORE||Oregon|
[sc:NCAA240banner ]Bleacher Report’s Tyler Conway and Donald Wood predict that Oregon will win its first ever national championship – and will cover a 6.5-point spread in the process – thanks in large part to the stellar play of quarterback Marcus Mariota.
The 2014 Heisman Trophy winner accounted for 400 yards of total offense and had three total touchdowns in the Ducks’ 59-20 Rose Bowl victory over the defending champions, Florida State. It was the first time in the Rose Bowl’s 101-year history that a team surpassed the 50-point barrier, another testament to the Ducks’ high-powered offense.
The Ducks were also devastating on the other side of the ball. They turned on the pressure in the second half of their Rose Bowl victory to force five turnovers from Florida State, the most in a bowl game since 2011. Oregon scored 34 points off those five turnovers.
|Dennis Dodd||-6.5 ORE||Oregon|
|Jon Solomon||-6.5 ORE||Ohio State|
|Jerry Palm||-6.5 ORE||Ohio State|
|Tom Fornelli||-6.5 ORE||Ohio State|
|Jerry Hinnen||-6.5 ORE||Ohio State|
|Chip Patterson||-6.5 ORE||Ohio State|
It’s been quite a year for the Ohio State Buckeyes. They lost a Heisman contender in quarterback Braxton Miller before the start of the season. Then lost their second quarterback in J.T. Barrett towards the end of the regular season. Still, the Buckeyes are the consensus pick over at CBS Sports. The panel of writers picked Ohio State to cover against Mariota and the Ducks by an overwhelming 5-1 margin.
Despite losing two quarterbacks to injury, the Buckeyes have made the most of backup Cardale Jones. He led the Buckeyes to a 59-0 demolition of Wisconsin at the Big Ten title game, going 12-for-17 for 257 yards and three touchdowns. Jones may once again shine in the title game, especially with Oregon’s passing defense ranking just 111th in the nation.
|WhatIfSports||-6 ORE||Ohio State|
If you’re looking for another reason to pick the Buckeyes to cover in the national championship game, then FOX Sports is here with their prediction. FOX Sports used WhatIfSports’ simulations to predict the final outcome of the College Football Playoff title game. After 10,000 simulations, the average score is then used to make their prediction. Using this formula, FOX Sports predicted Ohio State to cover against Oregon with a final score of 25-24.
Oregon’s Heisman winner in Mariota is a lethal weapon in his own right with 40 passing touchdowns and just three interceptions in the regular season. The Buckeyes may be able to limit Mariota’s time on the field with their rushing offense. Running back Ezekiel Elliott powers Ohio State’s backfield. He had a performance of a lifetime against the Alabama Crimson Tide at the Rose Bowl. He ran for 230 yards and two touchdowns in just 20 carries against the nation’s fourth ranked rushing defense.
International Business Times
|Greg Price||-7 ORE||Ohio State|
Greg Price of International Business Times predicts Ohio State to win straight up against Oregon by a score of 37-33. It’s not too difficult to imagine, especially with the Buckeyes sporting a perfect 8-0 all-time record over the Ducks. However, the last matchup between the two teams was in 2010. Mariota was still a high school senior taking over as the starting quarterback for the first time.
In his three-year stint as the starting quarterback, Mariota has led the Ducks to an impressive 36-4 record. He has racked up 10,463 passing yards with 103 touchdowns and only 13 interceptions. The 2014 Heisman winner is also adept with his feet with 2,198 yards rushing and 29 scores over the past three years. Oregon’s dual-threat quarterback should be able to keep Ohio State’s defense on its toes, especially with the prospect of winning a national championship to go along with his Heisman Trophy well within reach.
The experts have made their picks, how will you make yours? Create a betting account now and get your wagers down ahead of the biggest college football game of the year.[sc:NCAA490banner ]
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