Ohio State played Purdue, and the game was so close that the visiting team may have been a blocked extra point away from winning. Instead, the game went into overtime, where a backup quarterback wound up the hero.
Yes, the similarities between the Buckeyes’ 26-23 loss in West Lafayette to Robert Marve and his teammates last year, and Kenny Guiton and his teammates’ 29-22 win in Columbus this year are fairly striking.
Perhaps even more striking, though, are the differences between this week’s game, and the game Ohio State played against Indiana last week.
“I’ve never been a part of a comeback like that,” senior Zach Boren said. He’d been one of the players to admit the Buckeyes may have quit early, thus barely holding on 52-49 against the Hoosiers. But against the Boilermakers? “Everything was against us – fans leaving, injuries, field position – and we managed to pull it out. We clicked at the right time.”
And they were clicking on defense. Ohio State held Purdue to 22 points (7 of which were actually scored on special teams thanks to Akeem Hunt’s 100-yard kick return), and that’s ten points below their season average coming into the weekend.
“We had a solid defensive game plan and we executed very well today,” said senior Nathan Williams. ”
Williams, like Boren, was moved to linebacker for the game because of the sheer number of injuries at that position. Josh Perry was the latest linebacker to get hurt.
In addition to Perry, DB Devan Bogard, WR Corey Brown and–most notably–quarterback Braxton Miller were all keeping the trainers busy.
Miller has been released from the hospital. An OSU spokesman says he passed the tests that were run on his neck, head and back.
Should have seen this coming…
Everything seemed to be pointing to the Buckeyes winning in dramatic fashion against Purdue.
The Buckeye band included “The Final Countdown” in their halftime performance.
The Buckeye video board played the “Holy Buckeye” highlight just a few minutes before this OSU squad made their own highlight reel.
With an almost-too-good-to-be-true chance at redemption for an otherwise tough season, it was the Buckeye defense on the field in overtime when the game was on the line; and it was three defensive captains (Boren, Garrett Goebel, John Simon) who called the coin toss before OT.
Everything seemed to be pointing to the Buckeyes winning in dramatic fashion against Purdue…except the game itself.
“I’m still trying to figure this bad boy out. We won, right?” joked head coach Urban Meyer.
Ohio State is back in action October 27th against Penn State. The Nittany Lions just beat Iowa 38-14, and it’s fair to say they’re already looking forward to their next challenge.