Sept. 17, 2012

Ohio State Game Notes
Ohio State Weekly Press Conference Transcript/Video

UAB (0-2) at #16 Ohio State (3-0)
Saturday, Sept. 22, 2012 – Noon ET
Ohio Stadium (102,329)
Columbus, Ohio

The Broadcasts
Television: BTN will televise the game with Eric Collins and Derek Rackley calling the action and Lisa Byington on the sidelines. The game also is available on

Radio: WBNS (FM 97.1 The Fan) is the flagship station for the 73-station Ohio State radio network. The Urban Meyer pregame show airs 30 minutes prior to kickoff. Paul Keels will call the play-by-play with former Buckeye Jim Lachey in the booth and Marty Bannister on the sidelines. The game can also be heard live on Sirius 113 and XM channel 197.


  • Ohio State concludes a four-game home-stand of noon games Saturday against the University of Alabama at Birmingham or “UAB”. Either is correct on first reference.
  • Ohio State and UAB are playing for the first time in football.
  • Ohio State is seeking win No. 400 in 90-year-old Ohio Stadium. Ohio State’s official record in the stadium is 399-109-20.
  • Ohio State coach Urban Meyer is 107-23 in his 11th season as a head coach.
  • UAB coach Garrett McGee is in his first season as a collegiate head coach. He has been an assistant with six different teams, including Northwestern (2004-07).
  • Urban Meyer’s teams are 37-4 in the month of September and have won 11 consecutive games (Mississippi, 2008).
  • Ohio State is 60-7 at Ohio Stadium since the start of the 2002 season.
  • Ohio State has won 60 consecutive regular-season non-conference home games vs. unranked (Associated Press) teams. The last loss: 34-17 to Florida State, Oct. 2, 1982.
  • Quarterback Braxton Miller is the Big Ten Conference’s offensive player of the week for the first time. He was freshman of the week twice in 2011.
  • Next Week: Ohio State opens Big Ten play on the road against Michigan State.

Ohio State concludes a four-game homestand to open the 2012 season with a noon game Saturday, Sept. 22 against the University of Alabama at Birmingham Blazers at Ohio Stadium. Ohio State is ranked 16th this week by the Associated Press after opening the season 18th, moving up to 14th in Week 2 and to 12th in Week 3.

Some tickets remain for this game. They can be purchased online at, charge by phone at 1-800-745-3000, in person at the Athletics Ticket Office in the Schottenstein Center, or at any Ticketmaster location.

The game Saturday will feature dozens of alumni from both the Ohio State University marching band and the cheerleader program. Band members will perform the incomparable, quadruple “Script Ohio” during its halftime band show.

Having a hand – or feet – in all five of Ohio State’s touchdowns in a tough, 35-28, win over California last week has earned Braxton Miller the Big Ten Conference’s offensive player of the week award. This is Miller’s first such honor from the Big Ten. Last year he was named its freshman of the week two times on his way to winning the conference’s Thompson-Randle-El Freshman of the Year award.

Ohio State prevailed in a battle against a talented and determined California team on Saturday and improved to 3-0 on the season with a 35-28 victory. Braxton Miller connected with a wide open Devin Smith on a 72-yard touchdown pass play with 3:26 left in the game and Christian Bryant capped the win with an interception with 1:09 to play. Cal, 1-2 on the season and at USC this week, outgained the Buckeyes, 512 to 412, and came back from a 20-7 deficit to lead 21-20 in the fourth quarter. But Miller led two scoring drives around Cal’s third missed field goal of the day to give Ohio State its 399th victory in Ohio Stadium. Miller finished with a career-high 249 yards passing and four touchdowns with Smith and Jake Stoneburner catching two apiece. Miller also had a 55-yard touchdown run.

Garrick McGee was named the head football coach at UAB Dec. 4, 2011 after serving on the staff at Arkansas for four years, including the past two seasons as the Razorbacks’ offensive coordinator. UAB is coming off a 49-6 loss at No. 8 South Carolina Saturday that dropped its record to 0-2 on the season. UAB lost to in-state rival Troy, 39-29, in its opener and had an open week in Week 2 of the season.

The Gamecocks led, 21-6 at halftime, although they were outgained by the Blazers, 178-130. Twice in the second half UAB did not score on first-and-goal situations while USC added four scores, includin g a 94-yard touchdown pass, to put the game away.

The Blazers are averaging 363.0 yards per game (282.5 passing; 80.5 rushinig) and allowing 477.0 (256.5 passing and 220.5 rushing). Quarterback Jonathan Perry has completed 52.2 percent of his passes (35 of 67) for 536 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Jacki Williams and Patrick Hearn have 11 receptions apiece, for 202 and 174 yards, respectively. Linebackers Marvin Burdette (17) and Greg Irvin (16) lead the team in tackles.

UAB, a member of Conference USA, is a first-time opponent for the Buckeyes on the gridiron. The Blazers are in their 22nd season of football; 17th on the Division I-A level.

UAB is the 22nd team in the last 25 years that Ohio State will meet for the first time with the first meeting at Ohio Stadium. The Buckeyes have won 20 of the previous 21games against first-timers in Ohio Stadium, including over C-USA’s Central Florida two weeks ago. Texas defeated Ohio State, 25-22, in the first-ever meeting between the teams in 2005 before a then-record Ohio Stadium crowd of 105,565.

Ohio State vs. First-Time Opponents
(In Ohio Stadium since 1987)
2011 – Defeated UCF, 31-16
2010 – Defeated *Eastern Michigan, 73-20
2009 – Defeated New Mexico State, 45-0
2007 – Defeated Youngstown State, 38-6
2008 – Defeated Troy, 28-10
2006 – Defeated Northern Illinois, 35-12
2005 – Lost to Texas, 25-22
2004 – Defeated Marshall, 24-21
2003 – Defeated N.C. State, 44-38 (3OTs)
2002 – Defeated San Jose State, 50-7
2002 – Defeated Kent State, 51-17
2001 – Defeated San Diego State, 27-12
1998 – Defeated Toledo, 49-0
1997 – Defeated Wyoming, 24-10
1993 – Defeated Rice, 34-7
1992 – Defeated Bowling Green, 17-6
1994 – Defeated Houston, 52-0
1994 – Defeated Fresno State, 34-10
1991 – Defeated Louisville, 23-15
1990 – Defeated Texas Tech, 17-10
1989 – Defeated Boston College, 34-29
*Win vacated

Ohio State is 12-1-1 vs. teams that are current members of Conference USA.

Ohio State vs. C-USA (Last meeting)

vs. East Carolina 0-0
vs. Houston 1-0 (1994)
vs. Marshall* 1-0 (2010)
vs. Memphis 0-0
vs. Rice 2-0 (1996)
vs. SMU 7-1-1 (1978)
vs. Southern Mississippi 0-0
vs. Tulane 0-0
vs. Tulsa 0-0
vs. UAB 0-0
vs. UCF 1-0 (2012)
vs. UTEP 0-0

*2010 game vacated

UAB first-year offensive line coach John Peterson spent eight years at Ohio State (2004-11) as tight ends coach/recruiting coordinator. Peterson is from Middletown, Ohio, and lettered four years for the Buckeyes (1987-88-89-90) as an offensive lineman. He started at guard as a senior and graduated in 1991.

Braxton Miller had a hand in all five touchdowns against Cal: he scored the first touchdown of the game on a 55-yard run. He threw a career-best four touchdown passes as well: 25 yards to Devin Smith; 1 yard to Jake Stoneburner; 3 yards to Stoneburner; and the game-winning, 72-yarder to Smith. Cal was effective on offense, totalling 512 yards vs. the Buckeyes (288 passing and 224 rushing). Cal’s Brendan Bigelow had 140 of those rushing yards on two carries: an 81-yard TD in the third quarter and a 59-yard TD in the fourth.

A few more game notes…

  • Bigelow’s 81-yard run was the longest in Ohio Stadium vs. the Buckeyes and third-longest ever, after a 91-yarder by Iowa’s Larry Ferguson in 1960 and an 88-yard run by Michigan State’s Levi Jackson in 1974.
  • Jordan Hall returned from a foot injury/foot surgery to start at runningback and net a hard-earned 87 yards off 17 carries.
  • Sophomore TE Jeff Heuerman got his first career start.
  • Ohio State had double digit penalties (11 for 101 yards) for the second time in as many games.
  • Cal’s three field goal misses – all wide left – came in the 2nd quarter from 40 yards out and Ohio State leading, 20-7; in the 3rd from the 42 at 20-14; and in the 4th from the 42 at 28-all.

Coach Urban Meyer said after the game the best thing about 3-0 is having a chance to go 4-0. Only three Big Ten teams have that chance as Michigan State’s loss to Notre Dame leaves only Ohio State, Minnesota and Northwestern at 3-0. Minnesota hosts Syracuse this week and Northwestern hosts South Dakota.

Ohio State has won its first three games of the season 14 times in the last 22 seasons. In 12 of those most recent 3-0 starts Ohio State has reached 4-0. The only exceptions were in 1992 (20-16 loss at Wisconsin) and 2004 (33-27 OT loss at Northwestern).

Ten of coach Urban Meyer’s 11 teams have started a season 3-0. The only team that did not was his 2003 Utah team which suffered a 28-26 loss at Texas A&M in its second game. Seven of Meyer’s 10 3-0 starts have turned into 4-0 starts.

Ohio State has scored 56, 31 and 35 points in each of its first three games this season. This string of 30-point games is only the 10th time in school history – 123 years of football – that Ohio State has scored 30-or-more in its first three games. Such scoring has only been done three times in the last 15 years (1998, the vacated 2010 and 2012) and five times in the last 50 years (inclulding 1969 and 1980).

The 2012 Buckeyes represent the fourth team coached by Urban Meyer to open with three consecutive 30-point games after his 2002 Bowling Green and his 2007 and 2010 Florida teams.

A six-sack day by the Buckeye defense against Cal moved Ohio State from near the bottom of the Big Ten Conference in sacks into a tie for first (and 15th nationally) with nine sacks and a 3.0 per game average (Nebraska & Purdue). While Ohio State also had six sacks vs. Wisconsin in 2009, it’s been five years since the Buckeyes recorded more in one game: in 2007 Ohio State had 10 vs. the Badgers, led by a school-record tying four by Vernon Gholston. That game also marked the last time more than six players had a sack in a game. Joining Gholston with sacks vs. Wisconsin was James Laurinaitis, Larry Grant, Doug Worthington, Thaddeus Gibson, Nader Abdallah and Todd Denlinger.

Six Buckeyes had quarterback sacks against the Golden Bears and now nine different players have at least one sack this season. Bradley Roby had the first of his career (-11) to get things going in the first quarter and two plays later Etienne Sabino had his first (-10) of the year. By game’s end Johnathan Hankins, Ryan Shazier, Garrett Goebel and John Simon would also reach the Cal QB.


Single Game High Season Best
12 vs. Michigan St., 2005 47 – 2000
10 vs. Wisconsin, 2007 47 – 1998
10 vs. Michigan, 1998 44 – 2005
9 vs. three teams 43 – 2007

Ohio State’s offensive line has allowed just one sack the past two games – and none vs. Cal – and its four sacks allowed this season is T3rd in the Big Ten. The starters along the offensive line are LT Jack Mewhort, LG Andrew Norwell, C Corey Linsley, RG Marcus Hall and RT Reid Fragel.

Ohio State quarterbacks are completing 60.9 of their passes (53 of 87) for 648 yards with seven touchdowns and only two intereceptions.

Somehow Devin Smith got wide open down the Ohio State sidelines inside of four minutes to play of a 28-all game against Cal. Talent and speed allowed Smith to haul in the pass from Braxton Miller and burn 72-yards untouched into the south end zone for the winning score. The play capped a career-day for Smith: a career-high 145 yards receiving off five catches and two touchdowns. He scored earlier in the game – opposite end zone – on a 25-yard pass from Miller. Smith has now made noise in three consecutive games:

Miami – he hauled in a spectacular, one-handed touchdown in the end zone that just may turn into being the play of the year;
UCF – had a career-high six receptions; and
Cal – five receptions for career-high 145 yards and 25- and career-long 72-yard touchdowns.

Devin Smith’s 145-yard receving day against the Golden Bears marked the first time – officially – an Ohio State receiver has topped 100 yards since Dane Sanzenbacher had 104 vs. Eastern Michigan in 2010.

Last 10 100-Yard Receiving Games …
145 – Devin Smith vs. Cal, 2012
104 – Dane Sanzenbacher vs. EMU, 2010
113 – Dane Sanzenbacher vs. Marshall, 2010
161 – DeVier Posey vs. Minnesota, 2009
126 – DeVier Posey vs. Toledo, 2009
116 – Brian Robiskie vs. Texas, 2008
107 – Brian Robiskie vs. Washington, 2007
107 – Brian Robiskie vs. YSU, 2007
104 – Ted Ginn Jr. vs. Michigan, 2006
118 – Anthony Gonzalez vs. Michigan St., 2006

The 145-yard game for Smith is good for 37th on Ohio State’s all-time list.

Jake Stoneburner’s two touchdowns vs. California – from 1 and 3 yards – gives the four-year tight end who now lines up as a WR (H-Back) 12 career touchdown receptions. That total is good for a 15th-place tie at Ohio State with current Miami Dolphin receiver Brian Hartline. Four more TDs and Stoneburner will pass Demitrious Stanley and Anthony Gonzalez (13 TDs apiece) and Ted Ginn Jr. (15) for a Top 10 position at Ohio State.

Three receptions for 31 yards vs. Cal keeps Corey Brown in the team lead with 16 receptions (for 166 yards). Devin Smith is next with 13 receptions for a team-best 233 yards and three scores. Jake Stoneburner is third with seven catches for 92 yards and three touchdowns.

Double Digit Career Catches …
44 – Jake Stoneburner (537 yards and 12 TDs)
38 – Corey Brown (476 and three)
27 – Devin Smith (527and seven)
24 – Zach Boren (186 and one)
21 – Jordan Hall (202 and four)
11 – Carlos Hyde (75 and none)
10 – Verlon Reed (145 and none)

Sophomore Ryan Shazier’s 10 solo tackles against the Golden Bears represented the most by a Buckeye since Chimdi Chekwa had 11 against Texas in the 2009 Fiesta Bowl. Shazier finished with 13 tackles – his career high is 15 vs. Penn State last year – including a quarterback sack, two TFLs (-10 yards) and a forced fumble.

A 79-offensive play game by California – the most plays Ohio State has allowed since Purdue ran 83 in 2009 (PU ran 79 last year) – resulted in big tackling numbers for the Buckeyes. At least five Buckeyes came through with career-high numbers, including:

  • C.J. Barnett’s six solo tackles;
  • Christian Bryant’s two PBUs and first interception;
  • Johnathan Hankins’ 10 total tackles and six solo tackles;
  • Bradley Roby’s nine total tackles, seven solo tackles, 1.0 TFLs and two pass break-ups; and
  • Shazier’s 10 solo tackles and two PBUs.

There has been one signature defensive play in each of the Buckeyes’ first three games this season. Christian Bryant’s interception with 1:09 to play in the 35-28 win over Cal was the latest. The others:

  • Fifth-year senior Orhian Johnson intercepted UCF’s Blake Bortles on a third-quarter second-down play from the Ohio State 14 yard line. The Knights, trailing 31-16 at the time, were threatening to make it a one-play game.
  • Bradley Roby chased down Miami’s Dawan Scott for a touchdown saving tackle after a 58-yard completion in the first quarter of a scoreless opening game.

Led by Travis Howard’s three interceptions, which places the senior T4th nationally, Ohio State has already picked off a Big Ten-best six passes this season.

7 – Travis Howard
5 – Orhian Johnson
3 – Bradley Roby
2 – C.J. Barnett
2 – Storm Klein
1 – Christian Bryant
1 – Etienne Sabino
1 – Nathan Williams

In addition to sacks and interceptions, Ohio State leads the Big Ten in scoring (40.7 ppg), is second in rushing (237.7 ypg) and third in turnover margin (+3.0). Individually…

Devin Smith was named to the team’s prestigious champions club for the third consecutive game and thus becomes the first three-time game champion of 2012. He was named the offensive player of the week and is joined by Jordan Hall, Zach Boren and Jeff Heuerman as offensive champions this week.

Defensive player of the week honors went to Johnathan Hankins for the second consecutive week. Bradley Roby and Ryan Shazier were also named defensive champions. Tyvis Powell was a scout team champion. Special teams champions are TBD.

2012 Champions…

3 Devin Smith (Miami, UCF, *California)
2 Johnathan Hankins (*UCF, *California)
Andrew Norwell (Miami, UCF)
Zach Boren (Miami, California)
Corey Brown (Miami, *UCF)
Bradley Roby (*Miami, California)
1 Travis Howard (Miami)
Christian Bryant (Miami)
Adam Griffin (ST Miami)
Evan Spencer (UCF)
John Simon (UCF)
Aldolphus Washington (ST UCF)
David Perkins (ST UCF)
Nagee Murray (ST UCF)
Jamal Marcus (ST UCF)
Taylor Rice (ST UCF)
Jordan Hall (California)
Braxton Miller (Miami)
Jack Mewhort (Miami)
Carlos Hyde (Miami)
Jeff Heuerman (California)
Ryan Shazier (California)

*Player of the Week; ST = Special Teams

Braxton Miller’s 141-yard rushing game vs. UCF, in the wake of an Ohio State quarterback-record 161 in the opener vs. Miami, gives him the most rushing yards by a QB in consecutive games in school history (302). Additionally this season Braxton has …

  • Scored touchdowns from 65-, 37-, 6-, 8- and 55-yards out;
  • Set a school quarterback record with five career 100-yards (or more) rushing games;
  • Rushed more times in one game – 27 vs. UCF – than any OSU quarterback in one game in school history (Cornelius Greene in 1974 vs. Illinois and Tom Matte in 1960 vs. Michigan held the record for most carries);
  • Scored three touchdowns in one game (UCF), the most since Art Schlichter scored three TDs vs. Wisconsin in 1978.

Braxton Miller has six rushes this season of over 20 yards, including long touchdown runs of 65 (vs. Miami) and 55 (vs. California). Miller now has 17 rushes of 20-or-more yards in just 15 games played. His top five gainers:

1. 81-yard touchdown vs. Indiana (2011)
2. 65-yard touchdown vs. Miami (2012)
3. 55-yard touchdown vs. California (2012)
4. 44-yard touchdown vs. Wisconsin (2011)
5. 35-yard gain vs. Illinois (2011)

The 27 rushes by Braxton Miller against UCF represented a school-record number of carries for an Ohio State quarterback, and his three touchdowns scored ties Art Schlichter (three vs. Illinois in 1979) for the most by a quarterback. Ohio State has had numerous quarterbacks throughout its history who liked to carry the football; here’s a look at the most carries for some of those QBs:

27 – Braxton Miller vs. UCF, 2012
25 – Cornelius Greene vs. Illinois, 1974
25 – Tom Matte vs. Michigan, 1960
24 – Rod Gerald vs. Penn State, 1976
23 – Don Lamka vs. Colorado, 1971
23 – Ron Maciejowski vs. Wisconsin, 1968
21 – Art Schlichter vs. Michigan, 1978
21 – Terrelle Pryor vs. Purdue, 2009
20 – Steve Bellisari vs. Penn State, 1999
20 – Rex Kern vs. Stanford, 1971 Rose Bowl
19 – Troy Smith vs. Penn State, 2005
19 – Craig Krenzel vs. Miami (Fla.), 2003

The 46-point margin of victory by Ohio State in Urban Meyer’s debut game as coach represented the fourth-largest victory margin in an opening game for an Ohio State coach. Meyer is the 24th head coach in school history and only three enjoyed a larger winning margin.

Top 5 Margins of Victory (Coaches’ First Game)
58 – Ohio State 58, Ohio Wesleyan 0 (John Wilce)
55 – Ohio State 55, Otterbein 0 (John R. Richards)
54 – Ohio State 54, Missouri 0 (Carroll Widdoes)
46 – Ohio State 56, Miami 10 (Urban Meyer)
42 – Ohio State 42, Akron 0 (Luke Fickell)

Back home in Ohio to live for the first time in nine years, Urban Meyer addressed publicly early in his tenure that his goal was for his coaches and players and program to “make the great state of Ohio proud.”

Meyer’s coaching staff includes eight assistants who were either born, raised and/or schooled in the great football state of Ohio. Like Meyer, seven of his assistants grew up in the state.

  • CB coach Kerry Coombs is from Colerain, graduated from the University of Dayton and has coached in the state for 30 years; 24 years in the high school ranks and five years collegiately.
  • RB coach Stan Drayton is from Cleveland, graduated from Allegheny College and is in his fourth year coaching in the state.
  • Def. coord./LB coach Luke Fickell is from Columbus, graduated from Ohio State and has been a college coach in the state for 14 years.
  • Off. coord/QB coach Tom Herman was born in Cincinnati.
  • FB/TE coach Tim Hinton is from Amanda, graduated from Wilmington College and has coached collegiately or in the high school ranks in the state for 28 years.
  • WR coach Zach Smith, the grandson of Earle Bruce, grew up in the Columbus suburb of Dublin.
  • DL coach Mike Vrabel is from Akron, graduated from Ohio State and is in his second year coaching at his alma mater.
  • Co-off. coord/OL coach Ed Warinner is from Strasburg and graduated from Mount Union.

Meyer’s Ohio State coaching staff has 199 combined years of NFL, college and high school coaching experience. The total includes three coaches on staff with college head coaching experience (Meyer, Luke Fickell and Everett Withers), two with a combined 32 years of high school head coaching experience (Kerry Coombs and Tim Hinton), two with 12 years of offensive coordinator experience on the collegiate level (Tom Herman and Ed Warinner) and two with 15 years of collegiate defensive coordinator or co-defensive coordinator experience (Withers and Fickell).

Urban Meyer has held four head coaching positions and at each school he has retained the previous staff’s defensive coordinator. It’s an impressive list that now includes Luke Fickell, co-defensive coordinator for six years previously at Ohio State. The others: Tim Beckman at Bowling Green (Beckman is now head coach at Illinois); Kyle Whittingham at Utah (he is entering his seventh season as Utah head coach); and Charlie Strong at Florida (Strong is in his third season as head coach at Louisville).

The 2012 football season will be the 123rd season for the Ohio State football program. Football became a varsity sport at Ohio State in 1890. Ohio State ranks fifth all-time in NCAA Division I history with 826 wins. Ohio State’s all-time record is 827-315-53.

The 2012 season will be Ohio State’s 100th season of play in the Big Ten Conference. Ohio State joined the former Western Conference during the 1912-13 academic year, but it could not compete in the conference in football until 1913. Ohio State ranks second in all-time Big Ten wins with a record of 457-171-24. Ohio State also ranks second with 34 outright or shared Big Ten championships.

Ohio Stadium, grand and venerable and registered on the National Register of Historic Places, will host its 90th football season in 2012. Ohio Stadium is endearingly nicknamed the “Horeshoe” or the “Shoe” because of its open south end. It is also referred to as the “House that Harley Built” after Chic Harley, Ohio State’s first three-time All-American who fans flocked to see at Ohio Field in 1916-17-19. Just one year after Harley’s career at Ohio State was over, things were in motion for a new stadium for the Buckeyes.

From authors Marv Homan, a former Ohio State radio announcer and sports information director, and reporter Paul Hornung, who co-wrote “Ohio State – 100 Years of Football,” the stadium took shape this way:

1919 – Led by Harley, Ohio State recorded its first win over Michigan, 13-3, and the program was becoming a major force in the Western Conference. Ohio Field could not support the legions of fans that wanted to see the team play.

1920 – Professor and athletic board member Paul French, and Director of Athletics Lynn St. John, started an extensive stadium fund raising campaign while interest was soaring. The goal was to raise the “unrealistic” amount of $600,000 for the stadium campaign. Five weeks later more than $900,000 had been pledged. Ohio State went undefeated that season and received its first invitation to the Rose Bowl, further raising interest in the program.

1921 – A ground-breaking ceremony was held Aug. 3 with Ohio Governor Harry Davis part of a crowd of over 2,500 at the event. It was speculated the stadium would hold 35,000 fans. Upon completion, it would seat over 60,000.

1922 – The $1.5 million dollar stadium, of which more than $1.0 million was donated by proud and dedicated Ohio State football fans, was christened when Ohio State defeated Ohio Wesleyan, 5-0, in front of a crowd of 25,000. Ohio Stadium was dedicated prior to the Oct. 21 game against Michigan. With temporary stands in the south end of the stadium, a crowd of 72,500 was on hand.

1928 – L.W. St. John announces that all stadium debt has been paid, a remarkable achievement considering Ohio Stadium had only been standing for eight years.

Ohio State has an all-time record of 399-109-20 in Ohio Stadium and the stadium has an official capacity of 102,329. The Buckeyes have not played before fewer than 100,000 fans in the last 72 games, or since the completion of a three-year renovation project in 2001 that restored and improved the stadium but also boosted attendance from an 88,000-plus capacity to over 100,000. Ohio State has played before more than 105,000 fans 43 times with a record crowd of 106,033 vs. USC on Sept. 12, 2009.

A $7 million improvements project this summer replaced the 11-year-old Ohio Stadium scoreboard and audio system with a larger, high definition screen flanked by two clusters of speakers with new LED ribbon boards running the length of the south stands. The new Panasonic scoreboard is 42-feet-by-124-feet. The improvements project also included the conversion of 223 standard televisions in the stadium to HD sets.

Captaining the Buckeyes in 2012 will be a handful of seniors: FB Zach Boren; DL Garrett Goebel; RB Jordan Hall; LB Etienne Sabino; and DL John Simon.

John Simon is just the seventh two-time captain in Ohio State history and the first since All-American linebacker and St. Louis Ram James Laurinaitis was so honored in 2007 and 2008.

Ohio State Two-Time Captains
John Simon – 2011-12
James Laurinaitis – 2007-08
Joe Cooper – 2000-01
Steve Belisari – 2000-01
Pepper Johnson – 1984-85
Glen Cobb – 1981-82
Archie Griffin – 1974-75
Richard Ellis – 1891-92

Urban Meyer’s 10 previous collegiate teams have been extremely balanced in all phases of the game. His teams have led their respective conference in a statistical category 43 times, including in 17 offensive categories, 12 defensive, nine special teams and five times in turnover margin. Some highlights:

  • His team’s have led in total offense four times, including three times by Florida;
  • Four times his teams have led in scoring offense and passing efficiency;
  • His defenses have led a league three time against the rush and twice in scoring;
  • His return teams – punt and kickoff – have led a total of five times; and
  • His teams have led in net punting three times.

Meyer’s teams have been ranked among the nation’s Top 10 in team statistical categories 49 times, including NCAA statistical champions in passing efficiency (Florida; 2009) and kickoff returns (Utah; 2003).

The FieldTurf at Ohio Stadium will wear the logo of the Big Ten Conference this season. B1G logos will be at both ends of the field between the 20 and 30 yard lines and facing the press box. This year the team’s jerseys will also sport the B1G logo on the front right chest.

In honor of the 2012 season being Ohio State’s 100th season playing football in the Big Ten Conference, team members will be sporting a decal on the back of their helmets with the number 100 on it.

Due to an NCAA major infraction, the Ohio State University football program is ineligible for post-season play during the 2012 season. This penalty was imposed by the NCAA Committee on Infractions in response to extra benefits and preferential treatment violations involving institutional memorabilia and apparel. Additional penalties for the football program include the imposition of a three year probationary period from December 20, 2011 to December 19, 2014; the reduction of scholarships from 85 to 82 during the 2012-13, 2013-14, and 2014-15 academic years; and the vacation of all wins from the 2010 season.

In response to the major infraction, the institution has increased its compliance educational and monitoring efforts regarding preferential treatment, extra benefits, institutional memorabilia and apparel. Further, a greater emphasis has been placed on the education of the Columbus community, local businesses, boosters and other constituents to ensure knowledge of NCAA, Big Ten, and institutional regulations. The Ohio State University continues to strive to create a compliance conscience within the university and throughout Buckeye Nation.

NOT SINCE 1922-24
Ohio State ranks first among all NCAA Div. I programs with 86 consecutive seasons since last posting back-to-back losing records. The Buckeyes have not been under .500 for two or more consecutive seasons since 1922-24. Tennessee had been first until last season; the Vols hadn’t had back-to-back losing seasons since 1909-11, a span of 98 consecutive seasons, until going 6-7 and 5-7 in 2010 and 2011, respectively.