The last time TCU played Ohio State, the cost of a gallon of gas was 37 cents, “The Godfather” was the reigning Best Picture winner and Richard Nixon was feeling the heat for the Watergate break-in. Back on Sept. 29, 1973, the Buckeyes, under legendary coach Woody Hayes, spanked the Horned Frogs 37-3 in Columbus. Saturday’s contest between these top-15 ranked teams projects to be much more competitive when they square off at 8 p.m. ET from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

Ohio State has motored past its first two 2018 opponents, Oregon State and Rutgers, by a combined score of 129-34. TCU has been equally dominant, outscoring Southern and SMU 97-19. The Buckeyes are 13-point favorites in the latest Ohio State vs. TCU odds, down a half-point from the open. The Over-Under, or total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, has risen from 56.5 to 60.

Before you make any Ohio State vs. TCU picks, you need to hear what SportsLine data scientist Stephen Oh has to say. Oh, the renowned co-founder of AccuScore, specializes in sports simulations, projections and advanced statistical analysis.

Armed with this trusty projection model as a guide, Oh is a perfect 6-0 in his previous six selections involving the Buckeyes. Two weeks ago, he confidently backed Ohio State, a 38.5-point home favorite, against the Beavers. The result was a 46-point Ohio State win, allowing Oh to cash with ease. Now, Oh has scrutinized Ohio State vs. TCU from every possible angle to reveal a strong point-spread pick that he’s sharing only over at SportsLine.

Oh knows Buckeyes sophomore quarterback Dwayne Haskins is a dual threat with the ball. Against the Scarlet Knights, he threw for 233 yards and four touchdowns while sprinting for 95 rushing yards and another score. Ohio State is loaded with other weapons, including running back J.K. Dobbins, who racked up 73 yards and a touchdown last week. Junior running back Mike Weber, who has amassed more than 1,700 yards on the ground over his first two seasons, is the team’s leading rusher this season with 217 and has found the end zone three times.

Just because Ohio State has a prolific offense doesn’t mean it’ll cover a nearly two-touchdown spread on Saturday. TCU boasts a high-powered rushing attack. Against SMU, the team compiled 247 yards and netted 5.9 per carry. Oh knows they will need another strong ground attack to chew up clock.

For his career, TCU junior running back Darius Anderson has more than 1,100 rushing yards and nine touchdowns — including eight in 2017. Sewo Olonilua and Emari Demercado should also get plenty of snaps. Expect the Buckeyes to keep a sharp eye on dynamic wideout KaVontae Turpin. Against SMU, he took a punt return to the house from 78 yards out and snared a 42-yard scoring grab in the fourth quarter.

We can tell you Oh is leaning toward the Under, but he has uncovered a critical X-factor that makes one side of the spread a must-back. He’s only sharing it over at SportsLine.

So which side of the spread should you back for Ohio State vs. TCU, and which critical X-factor determines the outcome? Visit SportsLine now to see which side you need to be all over, all from the expert who’s a perfect 6-0 in his last six selections involving the Buckeyes.

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