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Dan Wismar

- Saturday, November 30, 2013

- Michigan Stadium - Ann Arbor, Michigan

- Ohio State (11-0, 7-0) at Michigan (7-4, 3-4)

- 12:00 p.m. ET

- TV: ABC -

OSU Michigan5They call it “The Game”, because no other football contest packs more history, tradition and intense rivalry than Ohio State-Michigan. This Saturday at the Big House in Ann Arbor, the two schools will square off  for the 110th time, and it will be one of the rare meetings in recent decades in which the Rose Bowl berth and/or the Big Ten championship will not be on the line.

What will be on the line is an undefeated regular season for the Buckeyes, and Urban Meyer has no doubt reminded his players that Michigan has spoiled perfect regular seasons for Ohio State no fewer than five times before, beginning in 1969. The Wolverines have dropped four of their last six games after a 5-0 start, but their wounded pride could be salvaged with victory over the Buckeyes, and the murmuring about Brady Hoke’s status as head coach would be muted, at least for the moment.

Meyer is off to a 1-0 start as OSU head coach against their rival to the north, and like Jim Tressel before him, he came to the job with a clear understanding of the importance of The Game. There are penalties for so much as uttering the M-word around the Ohio State football program, a rule that Meyer applies to himself and his assistants as well as to his players. The Buckeyes are already assured of a spot in the Big Ten championship game next week in Indianapolis, but there will be no looking past the Wolverines...because Urban Meyer gets it.


Dan Wismar

Miller IU2013aOhio State cruised past Indiana 42-14 in a snowstorm at the Horseshoe on Saturday, and clinched a berth in the Big Ten championship game as a result. School records were falling like the snowflakes, as the Buckeyes won their 23rd straight game, and obliterated the team marks for points and touchdowns in a season. The Buckeyes (11-0, 7-0) won a share of the Big Ten’s Leaders Division title with the win, a crown they can win outright next week in Ann Arbor, or with a Wisconsin loss to Penn State.

Braxton Miller and Carlos Hyde once again led the way for OSU’s relentless ground attack, running for two touchdowns apiece as the Buckeyes raced to a 28-0 halftime lead. Hyde ran for 117 yards on 18 carries, going over 1,000 for the season to become the first running back on an Urban Meyer team to hit that mark.


Dan Wismar

- Saturday, November 23, 2013

- Ohio Stadium - Columbus, Ohio

- Indiana (4-6, 2-4) at Ohio State (10-0, 6-0)

- 3:30 p.m. ET

- TV: ABC (Regional)  or ESPN2 -

OSU IU6The Indiana Hoosiers will provide the opposition as the Buckeyes try to set a school record for consecutive victories with their 23rd straight on Senior Day in Columbus this Saturday. It’s the final home game of the 2013 season, and 18 seniors will be honored for their contributions to Ohio State football, including 10 starters.

Ohio State squeaked by the Hoosiers last year by a 52-49 score, in a game that saw Indiana stage a furious 4th quarter comeback that ended when OSU recovered the second of two onsides kick attempts with just over a minute to play. The Hoosiers are  trying to close out 2013 with two victories to become bowl eligible, but an upset win over Ohio State, in the final career home game for so many Buckeye players, seems like a pipe dream.


Dan Wismar

Hyde Illinois3The Buckeyes won their 22nd straight game under Urban Meyer Saturday, tying the school record for consecutive wins by smothering Illinois 60-35 in Champaign. Carlos Hyde and Braxton Miller combined to rush for 430 yards and five touchdowns, and the Buckeyes (10-0, 6-0) held off an inspired performance by Illini quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase, who threw for 288 yards, and got Illinois within 12 points in the 4th quarter.

Hyde took over in the final period when the Illini got uncomfortably close at 47-35, closing out the scoring with TD runs of 51 and 55 yards in the final four minutes. The senior would finish with a career-best 246 rushing yards, but he wasn’t happy with the way the Buckeyes let the Illini back in it after piling up a 35-7 lead in the 2nd quarter.  “We came out scoring points, but we hit a wall later with a few three-and-outs,” Hyde said afterwards. “Late in the game we started clicking, but we can’t hit that wall.”


Dan Wismar

Abbrederis3I’m always watching college football, and the Big Ten specifically, with an eye toward players I could reasonably project into a Browns uniform one day. It has always made sense to me that the home team should draft and sign more Big Ten talent. They’re accustomed to playing in this weather for one thing, and fan familiarity counts for something too.

The new Browns have been decidedly averse to Ohio State players, for whatever reason seeming to ignore the rich history there, from Groza to Schafrath to DeLeone to Houston to Warfield. The current roster has just one OSU player, rookie tackle Reid Fragel, recently signed off the Bengals waiver wire, although picks from elsewhere in the conference...Joe Thomas comes to mind...haven’t worked out badly.

The Browns have drafted just two OSU players (WR Brian Robiskie, 2nd round, 2009 and TE Darnell Saunders; 6th round, 2002) since Bill Belichick took an inexplicable flyer on Craig Powell on his way out of town in 1995. And there have been a few other high-profile misses by the Browns on Big Ten players. Courtney Brown of Penn State and Michigan’s Braylon Edwards were a No 1 and a No. 3 overall pick respectively. That might have gone better.  Ditto Tom Cousineau.


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