Week 13 college football betting lookahead: Ohio State a big favorite vs. Penn State

James Frankin's Nittany Lions have covered four of the last five against Ohio State. Associated Press/Gene J. Puskar

College football lookahead is the essential grab bag of numbers, trends, reads and concepts each Monday throughout the season.

In Week 13, we dissect yet another historically massive spread, issue our annual reminder about the November phenomenon of "scoreboard watching" and rally around an elite coach and top program having a down season.

All lines and totals from Circa Sportsbook as of Sunday.


First impressions from the schedule and opening lines.

Penn State Nittany Lions at Ohio State Buckeyes (-19, 59.5)

Noon ET Saturday (FOX)

Since James Franklin arrived in Happy Valley, the Lions have covered four of five against the Buckeyes, and all four have been instant classics. There was an overtime loss to the eventual national champion in Franklin's first season in 2014 and an upset win two years later as 18-point underdogs against the unbeaten and second-ranked Buckeyes. That was followed by two one-point losses, both of which involved Ohio State rallying from double-digit fourth-quarter deficits. This is a big number against that backdrop.