COLUMBUS, Ohio – No. 3 Ohio State (3-0) scored touchdowns on 11-of-12 possessions before running out the clock to end the game to down intrastate foe Toledo (2-1) 77-21 Saturday at Ohio Stadium.
On the receiving end, Emeka Egbuka led with seven catches for 116 yards and a score. Marvin Harrison Jr. contributed six catches for 102 yards and a pair of touchdowns, and Jayden Ballard caught four tosses for 113 yards and a score.
Ohio State’s offense accumulated 763 yards of offense with 482 coming through the air. Ohio State converted on 11-of-13 third down opportunities, averaging 9.8 yards per play.
Defensively, Lathan Ransom led the way with six tackles.
The Buckeyes remain in Columbus next week to face Wisconsin Saturday in the Big Ten Conference opener under the lights (7:30 p.m.) on ABC.
Ohio State won the opening coin toss and elected to take the ball. After a kickoff return to the Toledo 18, C.J. Stroud quickly orchestrated the game’s first scoring drive, which culminated with a 7-yard TreVeyon Henderson rush over right tackle for a 7-0 lead. The drive covered 84 yards on eight plays while taking 3:45 off the clock.
Stroud completed all four pass attempts for 63 yards on the drive, the long being a 38-yard grab by Cade Stover down the right sideline.
Toledo responded to tie the game at 7-all on a 50-yard touchdown pass from Dequan Finn to Thomas Zsiros. The drive took just 48 seconds and covered 75 yards on four plays.
Undaunted, Stroud again drove the Buckeyes for the go-ahead score, this time connecting with Marvin Harrison Jr., for an 8-yard touchdown in the front left corner of the endzone. Harrison Jr. just got a toe down to make it 14-7 Buckeyes after a six-play, 75-yard drive over 2:33.
Over the first two Ohio State scoring drives, Stroud completed all eight of his pass attempts for 132 yards and a touchdown.
The Rockets were stifled on its next possession and punted. The Buckeyes took the ball on their 41 and five plays later went up 21-7 on a 3-yard Emeka Egbuka rush over the right edge. The big play of the drive was a 42-yard Harrison Jr. reception to the Toledo 3-yard line. The drive used 1:59 of clock time and covered 59 yards.
Ohio State’s defense again stopped the Rocket offense, forcing the second Toledo punt of the game. After a 37-yard boot, the Buckeyes started on the OSU 29.
The first three plays of the Ohio State drive resulted in first downs on plays covering 21, 19 and 10 yards.
The Rockets called timeout but Stroud found Stover for 11 yards to the Toledo 10, Ohio State’s fourth-consecutive play for a first down. A 5-yard rush by Miyan Williams, who replaced Henderson after Ohio State’s first possession, the Buckeyes found the endzone again improve the lead to 28-7.
The score was a 5-yard grab by Julian Fleming along the right edge of the endzone to end a 7-play, 71-yard drive.
Toledo ran one play following a touchback to end the quarter.
The Rockets moved the ball to the Ohio State 23 before cutting into the Buckeyes lead on a 23-yard scoring jaunt by quarterback Dequan Finn to the front right corner of the endzone to make it 28-14.
The Toledo drive used 4:29 on 11 plays and covered 75 yards.
Ohio State drove to the Toledo 16 on the next Buckeyes possession before the Rockets called timeout.
Two plays later, Harrison Jr. grabbed a Stroud pass in the back of the endzone to give Ohio State the 35-14 lead and a touchdown on each of five possessions in the game. The latest drive used 3:25 on seven plays and covered 75 yards.
Stroud completed 15 of 17 passes over the five scores for 258 yards and three touchdowns.
The Buckeyes got the ball back after a Toledo drive stalled at its 42. The Rockets pinned Ohio State back at its 11 after a 47-yard punt.
Ohio State then covered the 89 yards to score on its sixth-consecutive possession after an 11-yard touchdown pass from Stroud to Fleming over the middle for a 42-14 lead.
Stroud finished the half completing 18 of 20 passes for 297 yards and four touchdowns. Harrison Jr. led seven receivers with six catches for 102 yards and a pair of scores.
Miyan Williams led the rushing attack with 10 attempts for 77 yards.
The Rockets opened the second half with the ball but turned it over to the Buckeyes when Ronnie Hickman intercepted a Dequan Finn pass at the OSU 44 and retuned it 8 yards to the Toledo 48.
The score after the turnover covered 48 yards on four plays while eating up 1:24 on the clock.
Toledo got back on the scoreboard on its next possession after a 40-yard pass play with 10:23 on the third-quarter clock. The touchdown made it 49-21 Buckeyes.
The Rockets forced the first Ohio State punt, stopping a streak of seven-consecutive touchdown drives, on the Buckeyes next possession. Jesse Mirco’s first effort of the night gave the Rockets the ball on their own 2-yard line after a 37-yard kick.
After moving the ball just a yard, Toledo punted from its own endzone to give Ohio State the ball on the Toledo 39.
Four plays later Stroud connected with Egbuka for a 7-yard touchdown grab in the middle of the endzone for a 56-21 Ohio State lead. It was Stroud’s fifth scoring pass on the night and his 22nd completion on 27 attempts for a total of 367 yards.
After another Toledo punt, Kyle McCord took over at quarterback for the Buckeyes at the OSU 32.
McCord drove the Buckeyes to the Toledo 26 before the end of the quarter.
The Buckeyes kept the pedal to the metal in the fourth quarter, highlighted by an impressive touchdown run from first-year TC Caffey.