A Missouri team coming off a historic 10-2 season faces the 11-1 Ohio State Buckeyes in the Cotton Bowl on Friday night in one of the most anticipated non-CFP bowls of the year. The clash between the No. 9 Tigers and No. 7 Buckeyes is one of two top-10 matchups outside the College Football Playoff games.
Ohio State once again ran the table this season before losing to Michigan in the regular season finale. Unlike last year, though, when both the Buckeyes and Wolverines reached the playoff, Ohio State’s loss in Ann Arbor in November denied Ryan Day’s team a spot in the CFP this year.
Missouri finished the year 10-2 in the SEC, with its only losses coming to Georgia and LSU. The Tigers were led by one of the best running backs in the country, Cody Schrader, who ran for 1,499 yards and 13 TDs. The 5-foot-8 former walk-on star, WR Luther Burden III, and OT Javon Foster (all first-team All-SEC selections) lead an offense that averaged over 34 points per game.
Check out our Missouri vs Ohio State prediction, odds, and best bets.
Missouri vs Ohio State Spread, Moneyline, Total
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- Spread: Missouri , Ohio State
- Moneyline: Missouri , Ohio State
Missouri vs. Ohio State Betting Trends
- Missouri, Ohio State ATS Records: Missouri 8-4, Ohio State 7-4-1
- Missouri, Ohio State Over/Under Records: Missouri Over 8-4, Ohio State Over 3-9
Missouri vs. Ohio State Analysis and Prediction
The biggest questions in this game have to do with who suits up for these teams, especially for Ohio State. Heisman finalist Marvin Harrison Jr. is eligible for the NFL Draft, and it would be shocking to see him in action (though he hasn’t yet announced whether he’ll play). The Buckeyes could also be without RB TreVeyon Henderson and/or DE JT Tuimoloau. If all three of those players sit, Ohio State would look dramatically different than it did all season, given that QB Kyle McCord and WR Julian Fleming have entered the transfer portal and will not be available on Friday.
Missouri is expected to have its offensive stars, but the Tigers will be missing two defensive starters, cornerback Ennis Rakestraw and linebacker Ty’Ron Hopper, due to injury.
With McCord out for the Buckeyes, even if inexperienced backup QB Devin Brown plays well, this won’t be the same Ohio State offense we saw all season. The Buckeyes will likely be without their top RBs (Henderson’s status is uncertain, and his top backup, Chip Trayanum, transferred to Kentucky in December). Against a good Missouri team with plenty to play for, there are just too many questions about who the Buckeyes will have to recommend betting on Ohio State. The line has moved in Missouri’s direction since it was initially set when this matchup was announced, so go ahead and bet on the Tigers while they’re still the underdogs.
Pick: Missouri (-102 at time of publishing)
How to Watch Cotton Bowl 2023
- Date: Friday, Dec. 29, 2023
- Time: 8:00 p.m. ET
- Location: AT&T Stadium — Dallas
- Network: ESPN, ESPN+