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Ohio State's Season Rests On Barrett's Shoulders

Expect plenty of new faces at The Shoe this upcoming season, as the Ohio State Buckeyes will be replacing more than a dozen key contributors from last year’s squad. However, the team is still stacked with talent and has coach Urban Meyer on the sideline.

2016 National Championship Odds

Just before kickoff of the college football season, Ohio State is +900 to win the national championship. Though this has them fourth on the board, they actually were originally posted as favorites right after the national championship last season.

The Buckeyes will need to replace Cardale Jones, Ezekiel Elliott, Michael Thomas, Braxton Miller, Nick Vannett and Taylor Decker on offense alone. Luckily for the Buckeyes’ faithful, the quarterback position is an open-and-shut case with J.T. Barrett the unquestioned starter.

Luckily for Ohio State, their schedule is pretty weak this season, which gives newer starters plenty of opportunities to get acclimated to a bigger workload.

Big Ten Championship Odds

Ohio State is the clear favorite to win the Big Ten championship – both in the general public and at sportsbooks. In fact,  the only team close to Ohio State (+160) is Michigan (+200). 

Outside of an early non-conference game against Oklahoma, Ohio State doesn’t really have a difficult challenge until the final two weeks of the season. The Buckeyes end the regular season by traveling to East Lansing and then hosting Michigan.

Season Win Total

The season win total for Ohio State is set at 9.0 (-200/+160), which seems incredibly low for a team as dominant as the Buckeyes. Since Urban Meyer took over the team ahead of the 2012 season, Ohio State has not won fewer than 12 games in a season.

As pointed out above, Ohio State’s schedule should be a cakewalk. Even if Ohio State loses all three of their critical games this season – which is highly unlikely – they will push at nine wins.

Most Important Player: J.T. Barrett

The quarterback position finally belongs to Barrett alone after splitting time with Jones and Miller over the past two seasons. Barrett will now be working with a lot of unproven commodities on the offense though. 

The attack on offense will be built around Barrett and his playmaking abilities – both with his arm and his legs. Expect Barrett to be in the conversation for the Heisman by season's end.

2016 Ohio State Buckeyes Futures Odds
2016 National Championship+900
Big Ten Championship+160
Win Total9.0

Odds as of August 13 at Bovada