With both teams entering the contest undefeated, there are plenty of historical elements surrounding the matchup, as well as massive postseason implications. The winner will claim a spot in next week’s Big Ten Championship Game in Indianapolis and remain on track to earn a College Football Playoff bid.
But even without the enhanced stakes, this is a rivalry between tow teams that have dominated their conference over the past half-century, combining to win 43 Big Ten titles since 1973. Moreover, 25 of the past 50 matchups between these rivals have been decided by single-digit points.
This year’s version of The Game has all the making of another instant classic, as it is the first time the Buckeyes and Wolverines have met as unbeaten teams since 2006. They’ve got to run the ball. Not just because that’s what their DNA is, but because that’s how you beat Ohio State. The last two times we’ve seen Ohio State get beat, it was primarily because the opposition was able to control the terms of the game with their rushing attack. The teams that beat Ohio State usually hold them to a 66% touchdown percentage or lower.