College football: Where does Ohio State rank in latest preseason projection?

Credit: AP

Credit: AP

Ohio State is No. 2 in a preseason college football projection published this week.

SP+, an advanced metric that takes into account play efficiency, explosiveness, recruiting rankings and past production to look ahead at what teams could be among the best in the country this fall, has the Buckeyes behind Georgia.

The Bulldogs, who missed a chance to win three straight national titles when they were upset in the SEC Championship game by Alabama last season, are projected to have the No. 2 offense and No. 5 defense, balance that gives them the nod over an Ohio State team that brings back a loaded defense but questions on offense.

The Buckeyes are No. 1 in defensive SP+ but just 20th in offense.

Big Ten newcomer Oregon is No. 3 followed by Texas and Alabama in the projected top five.

No. 6 Michigan and No. 7 Penn State give the Big Ten four teams in the top 10 while the SEC will have five thanks to expansion.

Mississippi and LSU are Nos. 8 and 9 while (still independent) Notre Dame is No. 10.

Ohio State finished last season fourth in SP+ behind No. 1 Michigan, Georgia and Oregon. The 2023 Buckeyes were No. 34 in offense and second in defense. That marked a 30-spot drop on offense and 13-point rise for the defense.

The Buckeyes open the 2024 season Aug. 31 at home against Akron, which is 133rd of the 134 teams in SP+ preseason projections.

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