Here are today's keys to victory for Nebraska vs. Ohio State and the HOL expert Saturday score predictions.
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Nebraska vs. Ohio State: Keys to victory, HOL score predictions

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Nebraska will travel to Columbus on Saturday to play their most difficult season opener since the early 1980s in terms of a ranked opponent.

Ohio State comes into the season as a near lock in many experts' eyes to make it back to the College Football Playoffs and capture another Big Ten championship.

As we get closer to kickoff, here are today's keys to victory for the Huskers, along with the HuskerOnline expert score predictions for Saturday.

NU enters today's game as a 26 point underdog to the Buckeyes.

Nebraska and Ohio State will meet for a fifth-year in a row on Saturday.
Nebraska and Ohio State will meet for a fifth-year in a row on Saturday. (Associated Press)

KEYS TO VICTORY: Nebraska at Ohio State

KEY 1: Find an early rhythm on offense

The key for me in this game for Nebraska against Ohio State is finding some sort of rhythm on offense. Win or lose, the Huskers need to show people that Scott Frost's offense is back in 2020, and what we saw in 2019 was an anomaly. I also think this Buckeye defense is working in several new faces, and there could be some big-play opportunities the Huskers could take advantage of early in the game.

KEY 2: Keep Ohio State's offense off-balanced

When the Huskers played OSU deep into the fourth quarter in 2018, Erik Chinander's defense did an outstanding job of keeping the Buckeyes off-balanced. The Blackshirts have to find a way to bring creative pressure at quarterback Justin Fields and keep him guessing at times.

KEY 3: Limit home run plays

Ohio State's offense is going to put up numbers and they are going to score points. The key is limiting the damage. NU has to make Ohio State earn what they get, and not allow home run type plays.

KEY 4: The 2018 Martinez needs to show up

Which Adrian Martinez will show up in Columbus today? The one from 2018 that made his way to Heisman Trophy odds boards in 2019, or the quarterback we saw a year ago? If the Huskers want to have any chance today at Ohio State, the 2018 version of Martinez needs to show up at Ohio Stadium.

KEY 5: Play with no fear of failure

Nebraska needs to be the aggressor. They can't play this game "not to get blown out." They need to make some aggressive moves at Ohio State early and see how the Buckeyes respond. In 2018 we saw Frost do that and NU nearly pulled off an upset in Columbus.

EXPERT TAKE: Nebraska at Ohio State 

Sean Callahan - HuskerOnline Publisher

Nebraska's will show their offense is back on track in 2020 under Scott Frost, but they still don't have enough in the take to go blow-for-flow with a team like Ohio State.

Ohio State 41, Nebraska 23

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Robin Washut - HuskerOnline Senior Writer

This is obviously a lopsided mismatch on paper, as the point spread indicates. However, I have a feeling Nebraska makes this game a little more competitive than many think. The Huskers won't win, but it will be much more respectable than the four-touchdown line predicts.

Ohio State 42, Nebraska 24

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Nate Clouse - HuskerOnline Lead Recruiting Analyst

I think Nebraska comes out and actually plays pretty well to open the season on the road. However, Ohio State is just too deep and too talented on both sides of the ball. Justin Fields and the Buckeyes get things going on offense in the second half and end up blowing things open late.

Ohio State 52, Nebraska 28

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Mike'l Severe - 1620 the Zone

This score anticipates some first game rust from Ohio State and Nebraska taking advantage of that. As good as the Buckeyes are expected to be they are still replacing a number NFL players.

I think the Huskers will have some success running the ball and hopefully the most experienced NU O-line in nearly 10 years will be able to give Martinez some time to attack down field.

Ohio State 38, Nebraska 20

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Andy Kendeigh - KETV Channel 7 Sports Director

Nebraska handled the ups and downs of this crazy offseason as good---if not better-- than any school in the Big Ten. That being said this game will come down to players making plays and Ohio State still dominates that category. The Huskers hang with them early but talent wins out in the end, the Buckeyes will show why they are national championship contenders.

Ohio State 48, Nebraska 21


HuskerOnline Week 1 Score Predictions 
Week 1 Sean Callahan Robin Washut Nate Clouse Mike'l Severe Andy Kendeigh 

Neb. at OSU

41-23

OSU

42-24

OSU

52-28

OSU

38-20

OSU

48-21

OSU

Mich. at Minn.

34-20

Mich.

27-24

Minn.

35-30

Mich.

27-20

Mich.

31-30

Minn.

PSU at Ind.

37-20

PSU

31-28

PSU

35-24

PSU

31-27

PSU

44-41

PSU

Iowa at Purdue

31-20

Iowa

26-14

Iowa

28-21

Iowa

27-24

Iowa

27-20

Iowa

ISU at OSU

45-35

OSU

49-35

OSU

32-27

OSU

30-24

OSU

27-23

OSU

OU at TCU

41-37

OU

52-48

OU

33-23

OU

34-24

OU

37-27

OU