The Rutgers Silver Knights (2-2) came into Ohio Stadium with visions of an upset. Head Coach, Chris Ash, OSU’s last season’s Co-Defensive Coordinator, understood that things wouldn’t be so easy. The week before in their squandered upset attempt against Iowa he was quoted as saying – of the Buckeyes (in the Shoe at that) “…was a different animal.”
It all began today with a lack-luster performance from the Buckeyes in the first quarter, who only led 6-0 by its end. Chris Laviano was shining, as well was running back Robert Martin and the defense was making a stand. On the Buckeyes first drive a JT pass intended for James Clark was picked off by the Silver Knights Anthony Cioffi.
Then a whole new story unwrapped from there …. The real game began.
J.T. Barrett and Ohio State scored three touchdowns before halftime, putting up a 30-0 score. JT would run and pass as he saw fit through the Rutgers defense. The perfection of his passing only continued the befuddling that the Silver Knights began to experience. And to the credit of the OSU Offensive Line they had their way as well – opening holes the size of a barn door.
Chris Laviano started off 2/2 then went 1/10 thereafter. He would end the slaughter (a.k.a. this game) 3/12 for 33 yards. All of his completions went to Jawuan Harris. Robert Martin started off good as well, grinding for the extra yards, but he eventually had nowhere to run. He’d end with 40 yards on 13 carries.
The Rutgers Offense only had a total offense of 116 total yards. Their defense gave up a colossal 669 yards to the Buckeyes. But Rutgers did win the turnover battle, +1 for the day.
Mike Weber for the Buckeyes amassed 144 yards on 14 carries. Freshman back Demario McCall also had a good day on the ground – going for 85 yards on 10 carries, and a TD.
Tylin Oden came on in relief for Chris Laviano. He did not fare any better. He would be 0 for 4, rushing for 14 yards.
The Buckeyes Touchdown carousel began in the first quarter with Dontre Wilson snagging an 18-yard catch from JT. In the 2nd would be the explosion. It began with a 14-yard catch from Terry McLaurin, followed by a 16-yard catch from Marcus Baugh (setting JT’s OSU TD passing record). Curtis Samuel knew he had to get in on the act – catching a 5-yard pass from JT in the end zone. The 3rd showed Mike Weber the end zone with a 46-yard scamper. Parris Campbell would rush in from 5-yards out and Demario McCall would get the call to sprint from 20-yards out. This did not end the TD rampage…in the 4th Johnnie Dixon would score on a rush from 5-yards out.
My! My! I am breathless …..
JT would end the game with 29 attempts, completing 21 of them for 238 yards, 4 TD’s, and 1 interception. Most importantly he became the all-time leading TD passer in the Buckeyes history … surpassing Bobby Hoying.
Mike Weber led all rushers with 144 yards on 14 attempts and one TD. Curtis Samuel, our all-around everything, would have 68 yards on 9 attempts.
Samuel would be the leader for all receivers’ of which witnessed 12 different players with at least one reception – he’d have seven catches for 86-yards, including a TD grab.
The great part for the Buckeyes in this game was seeing younger players get some time on the field, and the prosperities in which was delivered in their opportunities. Joe Burrow looked good from behind center; McCall proved his worth in the backfield; and Binjimin Victor showed his salt in the mix. We will be hearing of these three again!
Next week Rutgers will be in Piscataway against TTUN who won on a last minute thriller against the Badgers. The Buckeyes will meet up with Indiana in the Shoe.
Did this game show us anything new? Or will the pollsters see a new light? Of course not! The Buckeyes were a 38 ½ point favorite. Any points over that really amount to what we all expected. But the Coaching Staff, as well as Buckeye Nation, did see the future when the likes of the current crop of stars are off to the Pros. And, we can say, the future does look bright.