Facing its first double-digit deficit of the season, Ohio State answered the call in the second half and behind the familiar theme of the legs of J.K. Dobbins and the arm of Justin Fields overcame their biggest test of the season to secure their third Big Ten title in a row.
Attacking the middle of the field with All-American running back Johnathan Taylor and a quick three-step passing game, Wisconsin jumped out to a pair of 14-point first half leads.
The Buckeyes kept the Badgers off the scoreboard in the second half for the 34-21 victory and locked up its place in the College Football Playoff.
Dobbins rolled on the ground again, amassing 172 yards on 33 carries and score. After a shaky start, Fields fell just one yard shy of his second straight 300-yard passing game with three touchdowns through the air.
The 13-0 Buckeyes now await their fate in the College Football Playoff seeding announced at noon Sunday on ESPN.
🔊 Full audio highlights
Wisconsin took the opening kickoff and went 83 yards in five plays for the game’s first touchdown. Taylor capped the drive with a 44-yard run. Both of Ohio State’s first quarter drives went into Wisconsin territory but both eventually stalled. Dobbins had 38 yards on the ground in the quarter.
Much like the first quarter, Wisconsin took the first drive of the second quarter and went right down the field for another touchdown. Coan capped this drive with a 14-yard run to put the Badgers in front 14-0.
The Buckeyes got a spark from an unlikely source in punter Drue Chrisman as his pass to tight end Luke Farrell on a 4th and 9 resulted in a first down and kept the drive alive. But the momentum was short lived as Fields fumbled inside the Wisconsin 10 yard line and it was recovered by the Badgers.
After a Wisconsin punt, the Buckeyes finally got on the board as Dobbins punched it in from two yards out to pull the Buckeyes within seven at 14-7. K.J. Hill had the big play on the drive, catching a 27-yard pass from Fields, setting the Buckeyes up with a first and goal.
Wisconsin stole momentum right back, however, as the Badgers went the length of the field in just 42 seconds for its third touchdown of the opening half. The teams headed to the locker rooms with Wisconsin in front 21-7.
Ohio State took the second half kickoff and went down the field in just 1:39 and second on a beautiful one-handed catch in the back of the endzone by tight end Jeremy Ruckert. That was setup after Fields scrambled and found Olave for a 50-yard reception on 3rd and 7.
Wisconsin then went 3-and-out for the first time all night and punter Anthony Lotti dropped the ball on his punt attempt, giving the Buckeyes perfect field position at the Wisconsin 16. But Ohio State could muster just a field goal and it was 21-17 Wisconsin.
The Badgers took advantage of a couple of OSU penalties to move deep into Buckeye territory but their 48-yard field goal attempt was wide left. The Buckeyes answered with a 7-play, 69-yard touchdown drive to take its first lead of the night at 24-21 with 2:17 to play in the quarter. K.J. Hill, who set the OSU career reception record earlier in the drive, capped the march with a 16-yard score.
In the fourth quarter, the Buckeyes turn the ball-control tables on Wisconsin with a 12-play, 62-yard drive that ate up 5:57 off the clock. The dive concluded with a 24-yard Haubeil field goal. The Buckeyes were able to thwart any Wisconsin threats down the stretch.
🔊 Ruckert’s one-handed grab turns the momentum