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Oct. 30, 2005

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Attendance: 54,825

Series and Ohio State Team Notes

With the win Saturday, Ohio State now leads the series withMinnesota, 38-7, and has won three consecutive games against theGolden Gophers. In Minneapolis, the Buckeyes are 19-4 and have won10 straight games, all in the Metrodome. The last loss to Minnesotain Minneapolis was a 35-31 setback in 1981, played in the last yearof Memorial Stadium on the Minnesota campus. Ohio State is 3-0against Minnesota under head coach Jim Tressel, who is now 46-13 atOhio State and 27-10 in the Big Ten. Tressel is 181-70-2 overall inhis 20th year as a head coach. When ranked in the AP Top 25, OhioState now is 385-123-14. In Big Ten play, Ohio State is now421-162-24 since 1913. Ohio State scored a touchdown on its openingpossession of the game for the third time this season. Juniorquarterback Troy Smith hit junior flanker Santonio Holmes for a41-yard scoring strike to give the Buckeyes a 7-0 lead with 12:42to play in the first quarter. The 17-point first quarter pointsmarked the most points scored in a quarter by the Buckeyes thisseason. Ohio State scored 16 points in the second quarter againstTexas on Sept. 10. Ohio State improves to 36-3 when leading afterthree quarters. The score was 17-10 after the first quarter andtied 17-17 at the half. Ohio State held a 31-24 advantage after thethird quarter. Minnesota did not allow the Buckeyes to score in thesecond quarter. It was the first scoreless second quarter for OhioState this season and was the sixth quarter this year the Buckeyesdid not score any points. Ohio State did not score in the fourthagainst Miami, the first or the fourth quarters against Texas andthe third or the fourth quarters at Penn State. Ohio State’s 45points were the most since it scored 50 points vs. San Jose Statein a 50-7 win in 2002. The point total vs. Minnesota is the higheston the road by a Jim Tressel-coached team and the most by theBuckeyes since a 45-14 win at Iowa on Nov. 7, 1998. The Buckeyeshave scored a touchdown in 109 consecutive games. The last time aBuckeye team was held without a touchdown was a 13-9 loss toMichigan in the 1996 season.

Ohio State Player Notes

Sophomore tight end Marcel Frost made his first career startvs. Minnesota. Junior split end Santonio Holmes’ 41-yard TDreception to cap the Buckeyes’ opening drive of the game was hisfourth reception this season of more than 40 yards. Two playsearlier in the drive, he had an 8-yard reception. It was the 26thconsecutive game for Holmes with at least two catches. Holmesfinished the game with four catches for 94 yards and two TDs.Senior place kicker Josh Huston converted a 31-yard field goal trywith 7:09 to play in the opening quarter to give the Buckeyes a10-0 lead. It was his 14th field goal of the season. The 100-yardkickoff return by sophomore flanker Ted Ginn Jr. that gave OhioState a 17-7 lead with 5:03 to play in the first was the first100-yard kickoff return by a Buckeye since Michael Wiley covered100 yards against Bowling Green in 1997. He is the 17th player inschool history to return a kickoff for a touchdown. Wiley was thelast in that same game. It was Ginn’s second touchdown return ofthe season, last week going 62 yards for a score on a punt returnagainst Indiana. The score was Ginn’s fourth of the season and washis third straight game with a TD. He scored against Miami and thenwent four games without a touchdown before a TD reception vs.Michigan State to go with the punt return at Indiana and the kickreturn vs. Minnesota. The 100-yard return by Ginn is the longestplay of the season. He returned a kickoff 73 yards last week atIndiana which had been the longest play of the year. Sophomoretailback Antonio Pittman rushed 67 yards for a score with 12:47 toplay in the third quarter to put the Buckeyes back on top, 24-17.It was the longest offensive play of the season, topping a 57-yardpass play from Smith to Ginn against Michigan State. Combined withhis 52 yards in the first half, Pittman topped 100 yards for thefifth time this year and for the third straight game. He now hassix 100+ games in his career. He carried the ball 23 times for acareer-high 186 yards. His previous high was 171 earlier thisseason against Iowa. Smith hit sophomore flanker Anthony Gonzalezfor a 27-yard score with 7:46 to play in the third quarter. It wasthe first TD for Gonzalez since he scored twice against Iowa in thefourth game of the season. Smith completed 14-of-20 passes for 233yards and three touchdowns. He did not have an interception. It washis third straight game with at least 200 yards passing, throwingfor 249 vs. Michigan State and 226 last week at Indiana. Ohio Statebenefited from a fumble to go up 45-24 with 10:39 to play in thegame. Senior safety Nate Salley forced the fumble while juniordefensive tackles Quinn Pitcock recovered the ball set up thescore. Junior cornerback Donte Whitner led the Buckeyes with 10tackles against Minnesota. Senior linebacker A.J. Hawk and juniorcornerback Ashton Youboty each had nine stops. Youboty had threepass break ups.