Oct. 4, 2011
Ohio State (3-2, 0-1) at #14/15 Nebraska (4-1, 0-1)
Saturday, Oct. 8, 2011
7/8 p.m. ET
Memorial Stadium (81,067) – Lincoln, Neb.
Television: ABC will televise the game with Sean McDonough, Matt Millen and Heather Cox (sideline) on the call.
Radio: WBNS (FM 97.1 The Fan) is the flagship station for the 73-station Ohio State radio network. The Luke Fickell 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 satellite radio channel 91 and also XM 91.
First and 10
About the Huskers
Nebraska is 4-1, 0-1 in the Big Ten and ranked No. 14 and 15 in the latest Associated Press and USA Today polls. They suffered their first loss of the season Saturday night at No. 7 Wisconsin, 48-17. The Huskers started the season with wins over Chattanooga (40-7), Fresno State (42-29), Washington (51-38) and at Wyoming (38-14).
As a team, Nebraska leads the nation in kickoff returns at 30.5 yards a return and rank ninth in rushing, racking up just under 250 yards per game. Ameer Abdullah is the nation’s best return man at 35.1 yards per kick return and 18th with 12.0 yards per punt return. Running back Rex Burkhead and quarterback Taylor Martinez rank second and fourth in rushing in the Big Ten with 103.2 and 96.4 yards per game, respectively.
Bo Pelini (Ohio State, 1990) is in his fourth season at Nebraska with a 34-13 overall record. He has led the Cornhuskers to three consecutive bowl games: Gator (2008) and Holiday Bowls (2009, 2010). Prior to getting the head coaching job at Nebraska, he served as LSU’s defensive coordinator from 2005-07 and Oklahoma’s co-defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach in 2004. He also was NU’s defensive coordinator in 2003 after coaching stints in the NFL with the Green Bay Packers, New England Patriots and San Francisco 49ers.
The Buckeyes and the Cornhuskers have met only twice all-time back in 1955 and 1956, both Ohio State victories in Columbus under Woody Hayes. Ohio State defeated Nebraska, 28-20, in its 1955 season opener (Sept. 24) before a 34-7 season-opening win on Sept. 29, 1956.
Big Ten Road Openers
Since joining the Big Ten Conference in 1913, Ohio State is 61-32-5 in conference road openers. Ohio State is 198-78-10 (.709) all-time in Big Ten road games.
By decades on the road in the Big Ten: 7-4 (1913-19); 12-6-1 (1920-29); 17-6-1 (1930-39); 8-9-2 (1940-49); 17-8-1 (1950-59); 24-6 (1960-69); 30-5-1 (1970-79); 26-14-1 (1980-89); 26-11-3 (1990-99); 31-9 (2000-09).
Week 6 Recap
No. 25 Michigan State snapped a seven-game losing streak to Ohio State with a 10-7 win in the conference opener for both teams last Saturday.
A Big Ten defensive battle was witnessed by 105,306 fans at Ohio Stadium as the Spartans and their aggressive, blitzing defense limited the Buckeye offense to 178 total yards and sacked the OSU quarterbacks nine times. Ohio State countered with an inspired defensive performance of its own, forcing three Spartan turnovers while repeatedly rising to the occasion with their backs to the wall.
Despite the best efforts of the OSU defense, the Scarlet and Gray failed to sustain a consistent offensive attack. The Spartans stuffed the Buckeyes on the ground, holding Ohio State to 35 yards on 39 attempts, while freshman Braxton Miller (5 of 10) and senior Joe Bauserman (7 of 14) combined for only 143 yards passing.
Michigan State never trailed, jumping out to an early first quarter lead as Kirk Cousins and B.J. Cunningham connected from 33 yards at the 7:44 mark for a 7-0 advantage.
Ohio State mounted its first significant drive of the game on its first possession of the second quarter. Miller hit sophomore wide receiver Chris Fields for a 33 yard gain to the Spartan 33, but an interception by MSU defensive back Darqueze Dennard squashed the Buckeye threat.
After Edwin Baker gave the Spartans a first and goal at the Buckeye 5 early in the fourth, the Silver Bullets held on three-consecutive plays to set up a fourth down early in the fourth quarter. On the following play, sophomore defensive back Bradley Roby tipped a Cousins’ fade pass to Cunningham that C.J. Barnett intercepted in the endzone.
Bauserman entered the game on the following series but was unable to generate any offense, going three-and-out. Michigan State would add a Conway field goal from 50 yards on the next possession to extend its lead to 10.
An interception by Roby at the Ohio State 24 kept the Buckeyes alive with just over four minutes to play. After the teams traded possessions, Bauserman found freshman wide receiver Evan Spencer open in the middle of the field for a 33-yard TD, making the score 10-7 with 10 seconds remaining on the clock. MSU would recover the ensuing onside kick to close the game.
A Pair of Top 5 Programs
Ohio State and Nebraska are two of the Top 5 winningest teams in college football history. Ohio State is fifth all-time with 822 victories in 1,185 games. Nebraska is just ahead of the Buckeyes in fourth place all-time with 841 wins in 1,227 games.
Both Seeking to Rebound
Both Ohio State and Nebraska had tough first weekends of Big Ten Conference play. The Buckeyes dropped their first Big Ten opener in seven years (2004 vs. Illinois) by losing, 10-7, to Michigan State in Columbus. It was the first Big Ten contest for Ohio State head coach Luke Fickell. And Nebraska, playing its first-ever game as a member of the Big Ten Conference, lost at Wisconsin, 48-17.
Lots of Hardware
Ohio State and Nebraska are among the most successful programs nationally in national award winners. Ohio State, behind its seven Heisman Trophy winners, has won 36 major awards. Cornhuskers have won three Heisman Trophies and 23 major awards. In terms of Consensus All-Americans, Ohio State has produced a Big Ten-best 78 such honorees while Nebraska has had 54. Here are each school’s last…
Heisman Trophy Winner
Ohio State – Troy Smith (2006)
Nebraska – Eric Crouch (2001)
Outland Trophy Winner
Ohio State – Orlando Pace (1995)
Nebraska – Ndamukong Suh (2009)
Lombardi Trophy Winner
Ohio State – Orlando Pace (1996)
Nebraska – Ndamukong Suh (2009)
Ohio State – Eddie George (1995)
Nebraska – Mike Rozier (1983)
Walter Camp Player of the Year
Ohio State – Troy Smith (2006)
Nebraska – Eric Crouch (2001)
Major Award Winner
Ohio State – James Laurinaitis (2008 Lott Trophy and Lowe’s Senior Class Award) and Malcolm Jenkins (2008 Thorpe Award)
Nebraska – Ndamukong Suh (2009 Outland Trophy and Lombardi Award)
First in NFF Scholar-Athletes
Ohio State and Nebraska are tied for first nationally in number of National Football Foundation Scholar-Athletes with 20 apiece. Nebraska is the leader among Big Ten Conference schools with 68 Academic All-Americans. Ohio State ranks third with 36. Penn State is second with 40.
Rocky Roads Only wish we were talking about that flavorful variety of ice cream, but the topic is Big Ten schedules and Ohio State and Nebraska (and Minnesota) face, arguably, the toughest conference slates this year…at least judging by conference marks right now. The combined record right now of Ohio State’s eight Big Ten opponents this year is 30-9 while Minnesota’s is 30-7 and Nebraska’s is 27-11. The 30 opponent wins is tops so far while 27 wins rank fourth.
And conversely, looking at the records of the teams the Buckeyes and Cornhuskers don’t face, Ohio State’s three no-plays have a combined record of 6-7, the fewest wins among any team’s set of no-plays, while Nebraska’s no-plays are 8-6, which is tied with Minnesota for the second lowest win total.
Big Ten Schedule Snapshot Legends Division School Opp. Record No Play Record Minnesota 30-7 8-7 Nebraska 27-11 8-6 Northwestern 27-12 10-4 Michigan 24-13 10-5 Michigan State 24-14 11-3 Iowa 23-15 13-2
Leaders Division School Opp. Record No Play Record Ohio State 30-9 6-7 Indiana 28-9 10-5 Purdue 27-12 10-4 Penn State 25-12 10-5 Wisconsin 24-15 10-3 Illinois 23-15 11-3
Leaders 2, Legends 1
In the Big Ten Conference’s first weekend of divisional play there were three games pitting teams from the Legends vs. teams from the Leaders divisions. The Leaders division has taken an early lead by winning two of the three (Wisconsin over Nebraska and Illinois over Northwestern while Ohio State fell to Michigan State). In inter-divisional games, Michigan defeated Minnesota and Penn State defeated Indiana.
Second of Four
Ohio State is in the midst of playing four consecutive games against ranked opponents. Michigan State was ranked No. 25 in the USA Today Coaches Poll last week with Nebraska (No. 14 by the AP this week), Illinois (No. 16) and, following an off week, Wisconsin (No. 4).
Been There Before
Ohio State has played four consecutive ranked teams three times before, most recently in 2003 when it defeated No. 14 Michigan State, defeated No. 11 Purdue, lost to No. 5 Michigan and defeated No. 8 Kansas State in the Fiesta Bowl. Ohio State also played four consecutive games against Top 25 teams in 1958 (Wisconsin, Northwestern, Purdue and Iowa) and in 1959 (USC, Illinois, Purdue and Wisconsin).
Back in Business
Ohio State will welcome back two seniors in offensive lineman Mike Adams and defensive end Solomon Thomas. Adams is 17-game starter who was first-team all-Big Ten by both the coaches and media in 2010. Thomas has played in 25 games with three starts. Two players who also were expected back this week — senior DeVier Posey and senior Dan “Boom” Herron — will sit out a sixth game. Offensive lineman Marcus Hall also will miss the Nebraska game.
Buckeye coaches are expecting receiver Corey “Philly” Brown to return to action this week after missing the last three games with a lower leg issue. Brown’s return is just in time: the team will be without the services of freshman receiver Verlon Reed, who was injured at the end of the Michigan State game. Further evaluation on Reed’s knee is forthcoming. Senior defensive end Nathan Williams has still not returned to the depth chart. He has missed the last four games with a knee injury. Adam Homan has sat out the last three games with a knee issue.
Buckeyes Drop Big Ten Opener
For the first time in eight years (2004 at Northwestern, 33-27 in OT) Ohio State dropped a Big Ten opener as Michigan State prevailed, 10-7, on a breezy and sometimes wet fall day in Columbus. A 33-yard big-play touchdown pass from Kirk Cousins to B.J. Cunningham and a fourth-quarter, 50-yard field goal by Dan Conroy was enough points to give the Spartans their first win over Ohio State since 1999 after seven consecutive defeats. Joe Bauserman, who replaced starter Braxton Miller in the fourth quarter, hit Even Spencer with a 33-yard touchdown pass with 10 seconds left to play for Ohio State’s only points. Ohio State managed just 35 rushing yards as the Spartans loaded up the box and pressured the Buckeyes all day, sacking the QBs nine times in the process.
Defense Keeps It Close
The Ohio State defense, behind career-high tackling numbers from Andrew Sweat (10), Travis Howard (10), Christian Bryant (nine) and Johnathan Hankins (seven) and three forced turnovers kept the Buckeyes in the game. Bradley Roby tipped a fourth-quarter pass in the end zone that teammate C.J. Barnett intercepted to stop one drive. Roby then intercepted a pass three series later. Hankins recovered a second quarter fumble.
Season High in Takeaways
Ohio State’s three defensive takeaways vs. Michigan State represented a season high. Bradley Roby and C.J. Barnett each recorded his second interception of the season. The team forced two turnovers vs. both Miami and Colorado. For the season Ohio State is plus-four in turnovers/takeaways with five turnovers and nine takeaways.
Looking Back at Last Times
Research post-Michigan State game reveals the last time Ohio State had: fewer than 178 offensive yards was in the 2007 BCS championship game vs. Florida (82; and before that: 177 vs. Iowa in 2004)…fewer than 35 rushing yards was vs. Iowa in 2004 (27)…fewer than four first downs rushing was 2008 vs. Penn State (three)…at least 10 punts was 2003 vs. Purdue (10 by B.J. Sander)…and allowed at least nine sacks was 1999 vs. Penn State (nine).
Line Has 102 Starts
Mike Adams’ return to the offensive line gives Ohio State a combined 102 starts along the offensive line. Center Mike Brewster leads the way with 41 starts (all consecutive). He is followed by fellow senior J.B. Shugarts (28), Adams (17) and a combined 16 starts from three sophomores: RG Marcus Hall (six), LG Jack Mewhort (five) and LT Andrew Norwell (five).
18 First-Time Starters
A total of 18 different players have made their first starts this season for the Buckeyes, including both quarterbacks and two receivers and two running backs. Defensively, the Buckeyes have had four first-time starters along both the line and in the secondary and two at linebacker.
Two-Deep? How About New Deep
Ohio State’s two-deep depth chart includes a total of 27 freshmen and sophomores, including 14 true or red-shirted freshmen performers. Saturday vs. Michigan State 10 freshmen or sophomores started, including frosh starters Braxton Miller at quarterback, Verlon Reed at receiver and Bradley Roby at cornerback.
The Buckeyes boast an all-time record of 360-127-28 in October games. Ohio State is 247-64-20 in October home games and 114-63-8 on the road that month.
Miller Solid in Starting Debut
Braxton Miller, just the third freshman to start at quarterback for Ohio State, rushed for 83 yards, passed for 83 yards and threw two touchdown passes to Devin Smith to lead Ohio State to a 37-17 win over Colorado Sept. 24 at Ohio Stadium. Miller and Smith hooked up on a 32-yard score in the second quarter to increase the lead to 17-0 and a 17-yard TD connection in the third to extend the lead to 27-7. Miller was 5 of 13 passing and he gained all of his rushing yards in the first half as he staked the Buckeyes to a 20-7 halftime lead. He did not have any turnovers despite constant blitzing from the Colorado defenders.
Miller has played in three games thus far in his Buckeye career, completing 15 of 29 passes for 235 yards with three TDs and one INT. He also has carried 30 times for 145 yards.
Miller led Wayne High School to the Division I state title game in 2010 while passing for 2,167 yards and 17 TDs while rushing for 658 yards and 17 TDs as a senior. He had a career record of 31-7 over three seasons and was a finalist for Ohio’s Mr. Football. A first team all-state selection, he also played in the 2010 Under Armour All-American Game.
Special Teams’ Shine
Sparked by Jordan Hall’s 145 return yards that directly led to 14 Ohio State points, the Ohio State special teams had a superb game Sept. 24 against the Buffaloes. Punt returner Chris Fields alertly pounced on a loose ball near midfield that had hit teammate Bradley Roby in the back. Zach Domicone rooted through a maze of bodies to recover a muffed punt at the CU 11. Ben Buchanan dropped three punts inside of the 15 yard line – 13, 5 and 9 – and had a fourth muffed at the 11. And kicker Drew Basil hit all three of his field goal attempts, including a career-long 47-yarder.
Just for Kicks
Ben Buchanan has nearly doubled the competition in the Big Ten in number of kicks dropped inside the 20 yard line with 13. The next closest competitors have done so seven times.
Hall Returns Big
Jordan Hall, who is averaging 155.3 all-purpose yards, accounted for 147 return yards in the Buckeyes 37-17 win over Colorado. He opened the game with a 45-yard kickoff return. His 12-yard punt return in the second quarter gave Ohio State possession at the CU 46 and six plays later an OSU touchdown made the score 17-0. After a third-quarter field goal cut the Ohio State lead to 27-10, Hall returned the ensuing kickoff 90 yards to the CU 5. One play later Ohio State scored for a 34-10 lead.
Brewster Reaches 41 Straight
All-American center Mike Brewster started his 41st consecutive game Saturday vs. Colorado. The senior from Orlando, Fla. made his first start in Game 4 of the 2008 season vs. Troy and started the final 10 games of the season. He started all 13 games in 2009 and 2010, respectively, in addition to the first four games this year.
Red Zone Efficiency
Ohio State has scored 14 of 17 times (82.3 percent) this season inside the 20 with 10 touchdowns and four field goals. The only three times the Buckeyes have failed to score came on a fumble and on two end-of-game possessions against Akron and Colorado while running out the clock.
Noting the Buckeyes
After the loss to Miami in week 3 the Buckeyes fell out of theAP Top 25 for the first time since Nov. 20, 2004 — nearly 7 yearsand ending the nation’s longest current streak of appearances inthe Top 25 (103 straight weeks). Tight end Jake Stoneburner set a modern day Ohio State record for tightends by catching three touchdown passes vs. Akron Sept. 3, from 28,11 and 2 yards out with Bauserman throwing all three. Stoneburner,who came into the game with two career touchdowns, finished withfour catches for 50 yards. The Ohio State record for careertouchdowns by a tight end: 10 by John Lumpkin from 1996-98. SeniorAll-America center Mike Brewster is regarded by some as the bestcenter in college football. He is a four-year starter with 41career starts. In 2010 he was the only junior to rank amongfinalists for the Rimington Trophy, was a first team all-Big Tenselection and a FWAA and Phil Steele first team All-American. Thisseason Brewster was named to the preseason Playboy All-Americateam, the Rimington and Outland Trophy watch lists and was votedone of 12 “players to watch” by a Big Ten media panel. Juniordefensive lineman John Simon was named one of 12 “players to watch” at the BigTen media days in July. Simon has 70 career tackles and 14.5 TFL. Apromising defensive star with power and strength, Simon was anhonorable mention all-Big Ten selection and Lott Trophy nominee in2010 as a true sophomore. Senior linebacker Andrew Sweat leads the Buckeyes with 34 tackles this season. Herecorded a team-high six tackles, including 2.0 TFL, a forcedfumble and an interception against Akron in the season opener andhad five and 1.0 TFL against Toledo. He is coming off a 10-tackle,1.5 TFL performance against Michigan State and now has a team-best95 career tackles, 9.0 TFL and three INTs. Senior defensive endNathan Williams, who is out indefinitely with a knee injury,was named to the Ted Hendricks preseason watch list. Williams hasrecorded 92 career tackles and 21.5 TFL. Last season he recorded 46tackles, which included 9.5 TFL and 4.5 sacks.
The Silver Bullet Defense
The Buckeyes have a long-standing tradition of producing the best defenses in the Big Ten and the nation year in, year out and rank in the top 25 nationally in several defensive categories in 2011. Here are some bullets that put into perspective the Silver Bullets dominance:
Ohio State has featured a Top 20 scoring defense in each of thelast nine seasons, including a top 6 in each of the last six.
|Year||PPG Allowed||FBS Rank|
Since the beginning of the 2005 season, the Ohio Statedefense has allowed only 11 100-yard rushers during a span of 83games and only seven since the start of the 2007 season. Both ofthose marks are the third best among FBS schools during thosespans.
Fewest 100-yd rushers allowed (FBS Teams Since 2005)
|1. Boston College||8|
|3. Ohio State||11|
Fewest 100-yd rushers allowed (FBS Teams Since 2007)
|2. Boston College||6|
|3. Ohio State||7|
|5. Brigham Young||10|
Last seven players to rush for 100 yards since 2007:
|9/17/11||Lamar Miller||at Miami||26-184|
|10/16/10||John Clay||at Wisconsin||21-104|
|9/13/08||Joe McKnight||at USC||12-105|
|9/15/07||Jake Locker||at Washington||14-102|
Ohio State has allowed just one 100-yard rusher in the past26 games at Ohio Stadium. Since the 2005 season, Ohio State hasfinished either first or second in scoring defense among Big Tenteams all six years. The Buckeyes were first in 2010, 2007 and 2005and second in 2009, 2008 and 2006. Among FBS teams in 2010, OhioState ranked fourth in total defense (262.2 ypg), third in rushingdefense (96.7 ypg), eighth in pass defense (165.5 ypg), fifth inscoring defense (14.3 ppg) and fourth in TO margin (+1.15). OhioState has held 65 opponents to 21 points or fewer since the startof the 2005 season, the most among FBS teams. TCU is second with64. Ohio State has allowed 119 touchdowns from scrimmage since thestart of the 2005 season, the fewest by any FBS team in this span.Ohio State has surrendered 50 rushing touchdowns since the start ofthe 2005 season. That mark is second fewest behind Alabama (49) forthe fewest among FBS teams during that span. Ohio State has allowedfewer than 10 points 30 times since the start of the 2006 season.Ohio State has allowed an average of 13.6 points over the last sixfull seasons. That is the best scoring defense among FBS teams inthis span. TCU is second at 14.2 points per game. Ohio State had 30takeaways last season. It was the second straight season that theBuckeyes forced at least 30 turnovers. The Buckeyes forced 35 in2009.
Head Coach Luke Fickell
New head coach Luke Fickell is backed by nine assistant coaches who have 184years combined working as college assistant coaches or staffassistants in their careers. Fickell is among four first-year headcoaches in the Big Ten. The last time the Big Ten featured fourfirst-year coaches: 1997. Illinois (Ron Turner), Indiana (CamCameron), Minnesota (Glen Mason) and Purdue (Joe Tiller) were hiredthat season. Fickell was the first Ohio State coach to face adefending Big Ten champion in his conference opener (MichiganState) since the Buckeyes began Big Ten competition in 1913. Since1913, Ohio State coaches are 6-5-1 in their Big Ten debuts. Inguiding OSU to a season-opening win in his first game as coach,Fickell joins 20 other Buckeye coaches with a first-game win. OSUhas had only 23 head coaches in 122 years of football and thatgroup is 21-1-1 in first games.
Ohio State is tied with Oklahoma with eight BCS bowlappearances. USC is third with seven. Ohio State is 1-2 in nationaltitle games since the inception of the BCS in 1998. The threenational title game appearances match Florida State for thesecond-most all-time. Only Oklahoma has more with four. Ohio Stateis 5-3 in BCS bowls, tied for second with Florida (5-1) for themost BCS Bowl wins all-time. USC is first at 6-1. Ohio State hasnot finished with a losing record since finishing 4-6-1 in 1988(John Cooper’s first season leading the Buckeyes). Ohio State’s runof 21 straight seasons without a losing record is the third-longestamong active FBS teams. Florida State has gone 34 straight seasonssince finishing 5-6 in 1976 and Florida has gone 31 seasons sincegoing 0-10-1 in 1979. Virginia Tech and Texas Tech have thefourth-longest runs at 18 seasons each. In Ohio State’s eight BCSbowl appearances, they have only been the Big Ten’s automatic BCSbowl qualifier four times (2002, 2006, 2007, 2009). They havereceived an at-large berth three times (1998, 2003, 2008) and werean automatic participant by the `3-4 rule’ in 2005. Ohio State haswon the Fiesta Bowl three times, the Sugar Bowl once and the RoseBowl once in the BCS era. The Buckeyes join Oklahoma (Orange, Roseand Fiesta), Florida (Orange, Sugar and BCS title game) and Miami(Sugar, Rose and Orange) as the only teams to win three differentBCS bowls. Ohio State is among three different programs to haveappeared in at least four different BCS bowls, joining Oklahoma andMiami. The Buckeyes only need to play in the Orange Bowl to joinOklahoma as the only program to appear in five different BCS bowls.While Miami has won the BCS title (2001 season), they have notplayed in a bowl game specifically called the BCS title game. OhioState has appeared in a bowl game in 15 of the last 17 seasons.Fourteen of those bowl appearances have taken place in January(2004 Alamo Bowl). Ohio State has appeared in a January bowl infive of the past six seasons. Ohio State (19) is tied with Michigan(19) for the most bowl wins all-time by a Big Ten team. Nebraska is24-23 in bowl games, but has not represented the Big Ten in thepostseason. Ohio State has won 34 Big Ten titles. Only Michigan hasmore with 42. Ohio State has 822 wins all-time, the fifth-mostamong FBS teams.
Ohio State has featured 14 NFL Draft first-round pickssince 2004. That is the most by any college team in this span. OhioState has had 67 consecutive crowds of more than 100,000 at OhioStadium. Ohio State has not lost a home opener in 34 years – Sept.16, 1978 to be exact when No. 6 Ohio State suffered a 19-0 loss toNo. 5 Penn State in Woody Hayes’ final season. Ohio State has anall-time opening game record of 105-12-4. The Buckeyes’ lastopening day loss away from Columbus was to Miami in the 1999Kickoff Classic in East Rutherford, N.J. All-time, the Buckeyes are109-8-4 in home openers since 1890. The largest opening day crowdat Ohio Stadium was 105,092 in the 2009 opener vs. Navy.
Not Since 1922-24
Ohio State ranks second among all NCAA Div. I programs with 85 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, which trails only Tennessee; the Vols have not had back-to-back losing seasons since 1909-11, a span of 98 consecutive seasons.
Ohio State to Wear Advanced Nike Uniforms for Wisconsin Game
Ohio State will be one of nine college football programs donning uniquely designed, highly advanced Nike uniforms for at least one game during the 2011-12 season.
The teams selected to sport the 2011 Nike Pro Combat system of dress uniforms include the United States Military Academy (Army), Boise State University, University of Georgia, Louisiana State University, Michigan State University, the United States Naval Academy, The Ohio State University, University of Oregon, and Stanford University.
The uniforms will hit the field on opening day of the 2011-12 college football season and throughout the year during some of fiercest rivalries in college football. Dates include Oregon vs. LSU at Cowboys Stadium (9/3), Boise State vs. Georgia at the Georgia Dome (9/3), Michigan State vs. Michigan (10/15), LSU vs. Auburn (10/22), Ohio State vs. Wisconsin (10/29), Stanford vs. Notre Dame (11/27) and the annual service academy bragging rights matchup between two of the nation’s most prestigious football programs – Army vs. Navy (12/10).
This year marks the 50th anniversary of The Ohio State University’s undefeated 1961 championship season — a distinctive milestone that provides a source of inspiration for a program steeped in tradition and rooted in pride. The 2011 Nike Pro Combat system of dress design for the Buckeyes harkens back to that team, whose offensive power lived in its backfield, led by the 6’0, 227 pound All-American fullback, Bob Ferguson. The Heisman runner-up was a power runner and contributed immensely to the team’s noteworthy speed, aggression and smarts. This uniform acknowledges the dominance of the 1961 team and will deliver an undeniable motivation for the current Buckeyes when they face off against Wisconsin on October 29.
Distinctive white block lettering on Ohio State’s bold scarlet jersey is accompanied by gray sleeve and collar accents that provide a retro look high in contrast. An inscription of the year “1961” on the inner neckline, socks and sleeves act as a silent reminder of the indisputable determination of that year’s lineup. A steel gray baselayer and matching arm sleeves feature a print reminiscent of a buckeye tree. These two pieces are patterned after Buckeye Grove – home to a collection of buckeye trees planted in honor of each first team All-American player, like Ferguson, whose presence always commanded respect. Dark gray pants complement the baselayer design, emblazoned with a prominent block `O’ on the hip alongside a scarlet streak on the pant leg.
Big Ten Announces 2013-14 Football Schedule
The Big Ten Conference has announced its 2013 and 2014 conference football schedules. Ohio State, a member of the Leaders division, will play four home and four away league contests in each of those seasons.
In 2013, OSU opens Big Ten play hosting Wisconsin Sept. 28. Other Big Ten games in 2013: Oct. 5 at Northwestern; Oct. 19 vs. Iowa; Oct. 26 vs. Penn State; Nov. 2 at Purdue; Nov. 16 at Illinois; Nov. 23 vs. Indiana; Nov. 30 at Michigan.
Ohio State has two non-conference dates confirmed for the 2013 season: Aug. 31 vs. Vanderbilt at Ohio Stadium; and Sept. 14 at California.
In 2014, Ohio State begins Big Ten action hosting Purdue Oct. 4. Other Big Ten contests in 2014: Oct. 18 at Iowa; Oct. 25 vs. Northwestern; Nov. 1 at Wisconsin; Nov. 8 vs. Illinois; Nov. 15 at Penn State; Nov. 22 at Indiana; Nov. 29 vs. Michigan.
The Buckeyes’ non-conference games for 2014 are Aug. 30 vs. Navy in Baltimore; followed by three games at Ohio Stadium: Sept. 6 vs. Cincinnati; Sept. 13 vs. Kent State; and Sept. 20 vs. Virginia Tech.
Big Ten to Play Nine Conference Games Beginning with 2017 Season
The Big Ten will move to a nine-game conference schedule beginning with the 2017 season.
Three teams each from the Legends Division and Leaders Division will feature five conference home games during odd-numbered years, while the other three schools from each division will host five conference contests during even-numbered years. The 2017 schedule will include five conference home outings for Iowa, Michigan State and Nebraska from the Legends Division and Illinois, Indiana and Ohio State from the Leaders Division. The 2018 schedule will feature five Big Ten home games for Michigan, Minnesota and Northwestern of the Legends Division and Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin of the Leaders Division. The Big Ten will return to a full nine-game conference schedule for the first time since the 1983 and 1984 seasons. Eight of 10 conference schools played nine-game schedules during the 1981 and 1982 seasons, while two of 10 teams featured nine-game schedules from 1971-72 and 1977-80.