Ohio State Football Among Biggest College Football Liabilities At Sportsbooks

Written By C.J. Pierre on September 6, 2023 - Last Updated on September 7, 2023

The atmosphere in Columbus is always electric during College Football season, and fans shouldn’t expect anything different during the 2023 campaign. That excitement is translating to at least one Ohio sportsbook.

The Ohio State Buckeyes steamrolled the Indiana Hoosiers in their Week 1 matchup. However, they did drop to No. 5 in rankings on the Week 2 Associated Press Top 25 poll. On Saturday, they’ll take on the Youngstown State Penguins in the Buckeyes home opener.

The Buckeyes will be a significant sports betting favorite in that game. But let’s talk big picture. Ohio State has eyes on a National Championship, and a ton of sports bettors are hitching their wagons to the Buckeyes. One major US sportsbook could be in for a large payout if Ohio State can bring home the College Football Playoff National Championship Trophy.

Buckeyes Are top 3 in BetMGM handle

For folks taking in their first college football season in the world of Ohio sports betting, there is a lot of faith in the Buckeyes. Fans are putting their money where their mouths are and banking on Ohio State to win the College Football National Championship. However, that isn’t only happening in the state of Ohio.

According to numbers released by BetMGM Sportsbook in Ohio, Ohio State has the third-largest betting handle in the country to win the National Championship. In other words, BetMGM customers have placed the third most amount of money on the Buckeyes to win it all.

BetMGM College Football Championship Highest Handle Percentage:

  • Alabama 40.8%
  • Michigan 11.6%
  • Ohio State 5.6%

Big Ten will play a major factor in the CFP

The interesting takeaway is that Ohio State betting numbers come in third on this list, and their bitter rivals, the Michigan Wolverines, are second. Michigan is the current favorite to win the Big Ten according to most Ohio sportsbooks, with Ohio State coming in a close second.

Most figure that the winner of the Big Ten East will come down to that final regular season game between Ohio State and Michigan. Since 2014, the winner of the Big Ten Championship has come from the East division.

The Big Ten has only missed out on the College Football Playoff twice since the playoff was started in the 2014-2015 season. Of the nine CFPs, Ohio State has been a part of five of them.

Ohio State has the second-most tickets to win the title

A lot of money is being placed on teams like Ohio State, Alabama and Michigan to win it all. However, in Ohio State’s case, many bets are being placed on the Buckeyes.

On BetMGM, Ohio State is on the second-highest number of tickets to win the College Football National Championship.

BetMGM College Football Championship Highest Ticket Percentage:

  • Michigan 15.7%
  • Ohio State 10.7%
  • Alabama 10.0%

To put these numbers into context, more total bets have been placed on Ohio State to win the National Chaimpship. However, more money has been placed on Alabama to win.

Ohio State’s ranking on these lists is due to a multitude of factors. The team has been consistently good over the past ten years. They are also near the top every year when it comes to recruiting. Head Coach Ryan Day has done a good job sustaining success with the program since he took over in 2019.

Meanwhile, Michigan has finally broken through after winning back-to-back Big Ten Championships. So it should be a surprise that most of the country is behind the Wolverines as opposed to the Buckeyes.

Ohio State still a top sportsbook liability

If Ohio State were to win the championship, it would be a big blow to most of the major US sportsbooks. Because of the handle percentage on Ohio State to win the National Championship, the Buckeyes are one of BetMGM’s biggest liabilities early on in this College Football season.

However, Ohio State falls out of the top three in terms of betting liability due in part to ‘Coach Prime’ and the Colorado Buffaloes. Head Coach Deion Sanders and his team have taken the college football betting world by storm. Colorado is the biggest liability in BetMGM’s National Championship markets.

BetMGM College Football Championship Biggest Liability

  • Colorado
  • Alabama
  • USC

Before the season started, Colorado over 3.5 wins was the most popular over bet at BetMGM. Ahead of Week 1, BetMGM had Colorado as a 150-1 to make the College Football Playoff, making them the operator’s third-biggest liability in the make the playoff with 2.7% of the bets and 3% of the handle.

Meanwhile, I’d expect betting numbers on Ohio State to pick up as the season progresses. The Buckeyes won’t face a ranked opponent until September 23, when they take on the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. If they win that game, I’d expect even more bets nationwide to be placed on Ohio State across all US Sportsbooks.

Photo by AP Photo / Darron Cummings
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C.J. Pierre

C.J. Pierre is a Lead Writer at PlayOhio. He has been covering news and sports for over a decade for both online and TV broadcasts. He was born and raised in Minneapolis, MN and is an alum of Minnesota State University: Moorhead. He recently dove into tribal casino, sports betting and online gambling news. He also covered the launch of sports betting in Arizona. C.J. has experience as a reporter and videographer and has covered high school, college and professional sports throughout his career, most notably following Arizona Cardinals, Phoenix Suns, Minnesota Vikings and North Dakota State University football.

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