It’s not anyone’s fault that the Big Ten is perceived (and probably is) as a lot weaker than the other AQ conferences, which harms Ohio State and their national title hopes despite not losing a game in almost two years. All that’s left is to keep on enjoying the developing talent of Braxton Miller; the powerhouse that Urban Meyer is building in Columbus; and for one of the three teams above them in the polls and BCS standings to slip up at some point.
Ohio State, on the way, is eliminating all competition in their conference. Next up? Penn State, who might have a moment or two of optimism to build on from time to time, but otherwise these are dark times, understandably, in the program’s history. The Nittany Lions lost 63-14 to the Buckeyes in the Horseshoe, on the way setting some not so flattering records.
How bad was it? The 63 points were the most a Penn State team has allowed since 1899, and the first time since 1988 that they’ve allowed more than 50 points. This becomes the third straight game of giving up at least 40 points, the longest such streak since 1899 as well. It was also the third-largest loss in school history, with the record belonging to a 106 point loss against Lehigh in 1889.
Ohio State set some milestones and records themselves: This is the 7th 50-point game in less than 2 seasons under Urban Meyer. They had only six games with so many points during the entire decade of the Jim Tressel era. They led by 35 points at half time, the largest at the half of a Big Ten game since 2010 vs Purdue (led 42-0). Ohio State haven’t held a lead bigger than 14 points against Penn State at half time for over 10 meetings.
It was hard to find something that didn’t work well for Ohio State during a fantastic night with nearly 106,000 inside Ohio Stadium. The defense picked off Christian Hackenberg and Tyler Ferguson three times, and the secondary is the most vulnerable part of the Ohio State team.
Braxton Miller threw for 252 yards and three touchdown, which even gave Kenny Guiton a chance to come off the bench and show his excellent passing skills. Miller also ran for 68 yards and a couple of touchdowns in a real tour de force from the quarterback, with everyone in Columbus hoping he stays for another year. Carlos Hyde, the main beneficiary from what might be the best offensive line in the nation ran for 147 yards and two touchdowns himself, making it the third consecutive game with over 147 yards.
I like where we’re at right now as a team. The most impressive part of the game to me was we caused turnovers and we hit the quarterback a little bit. We haven’t been doing that. The first half, it went really well: fast, fast, momentum. The game plan worked out. Our mindset was to find a way to win this game against a very talented team that we have a lot of respect for that had a lot of momentum coming into this game. … Things usually work out. I’d be disappointed if that was our guys’ focus. That’s not our focus.