Ohio State, Utah betting favorites in crucial conference matchups

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First place in the Big Ten East will be on the line this weekend when the Ohio State Buckeyes host the Michigan State Spartans as 13.5-point betting favorites at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

Ohio State enters Saturday afternoon’s Spartans vs. Buckeyes betting matchup at Ohio Stadium pegged at No. 2 in the AP Top 25, and can solidify their position in the College Football Playoff rankings with a victory over Michigan State.

The 10-0 Buckeyes improved their current straight-up winning streak to 23 games last weekend, topping the Illinois Fighting Illini by a 28-3 margin and easily covering as 17-point favorites to earn their third win against the spread in their last four games.

The win also marked the third time in four games that the team held an opponent to 10 or fewer points, while forcing the point total UNDER for the eighth time in their last nine.

No. 9 Michigan State is coming off a 24-7 victory over the Maryland Terrapins as 14.5-point chalk, rebounding from their stunning 39-38 loss to the Nebraska Cornhuskers two weeks ago. That loss seriously damaged the Spartans’ CFP aspirations after the team had reached No. 6 in the national rankings.

However, MSU has been a shaky bet this season, failing to cover in each of their first six outings, and are a dismal 2-9 SU in their last 11 against the Buckeyes and 3-7-1 ATS according to the OddsShark College Football Database.

Top spot in the Pac 12 South standings will also be on the line this weekend when the UCLA Bruins clash with No. 18 Utah as 2-point underdogs.

The 4-3 Bruins will be looking to bounce back from a last-second 31-27 loss to Washington State on Saturday night, knocking them out of the national rankings, while the 5-2 Utes fell 37-30 to Arizona over the weekend.

Utah’s SU loss was their second in four outings, including a 42-24 loss to USC in Week 8, while posting just two ATS wins in their last six games.

UCLA is a middling 3-3 SU in their last six, 2-4 ATS, but a win over the Utes would set the stage for a showdown with the Trojans next weekend to determine the division title.

USC, meanwhile, visits the surging Oregon Ducks as 4.5-point betting underdogs.

The 5-2 Trojans have won four straight SU, but have lost two in a row ATS and face a red-hot Ducks squad that has won their last four, SU and ATS, including three as underdogs, and has topped USC in four of their last six meetings, both SU and ATS.