This game got a whole lot more interesting last week, when Bob Stoops retired and 33-year-old offensive coordinator Lincoln Riley was promoted. The rookie head coach will have to travel to Ohio State for a night contest at the Horseshoe in just his second game, after a relatively easy opener against UTEP. That’s a tall task, although both teams should be ranked in the top 10 going into the evening, barring something going terribly wrong in that UTEP game or an Ohio State loss in Week 1 at Indiana.
Like the previous week’s Alabama-Florida State matchup, this won’t necessarily be an elimination game when it comes to the playoff. Ohio State has made the final four twice with a regular-season loss and could very well do so again, and now that the Big 12 has reinstituted a league championship game, its teams shouldn’t feel like one misstep against a big-name opponent will automatically count them out.
Both teams will feature quarterbacks with big-game experience in Ohio State’s J.T. Barrett and Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield, but both also lost plenty of talent to the NFL last spring. That’s a yearly reality for programs like these, though, and the bigger question will be whether the Buckeyes’ stout defense can stop an offense that was one of the country’s best a year ago.
Source : https://www.si.com/college-football/2017/06/15/best-games-2017-season