The Buckeyes are one of only 12 unbeaten Football Bowl Subdivision teams and one of only two at 7-0.
The 7-0 Ohio State Buckeyes, riding their longest winning streak in five years (the 2007 team opened 10-0), host the Purdue Boilermakers (3-3; 0-2) at noon Saturday in a Big Ten Conference Leaders Division contest from Ohio Stadium. ABC, with an ESPN2 reverse mirror, will televise the game.
Ohio State stayed unbeaten in the Urban Meyer coaching era with a 52-49 win over 2-4 Indiana last week in Bloomington. The Buckeyes led by 18 points, 52-34, late in the fourth quarter but aided by an onsides kick recovery, the Hoosiers scored twice in the final 1:40 in a desperate and dramatic attempt at their first win over the Buckeyes in 17 tries, dating to 1988. Corey Brown recovered IU's second onsides attempt with 1:05 to play and the Buckeyes, who had a season-high 578 yards of total offense, were able to hold on for the win.
Purdue, under the direction of fourth-year coach Danny Hope (19-24; 54-46 overall), gave up 467 rushing yards and 645 total yards to Wisconsin in a 38-14 loss at Ross-Ade Stadium. After Caleb TerBush scored on a 1-yard run to give Purdue an early 7-0 lead, Wisconsin scored 38 consecutive points until Akeem Hunt's 81-yard touchdown run with 1:39 to play.
FIRST TIME FOR THIS CENTURY CLUB
Ohio State had two 100-yard rushers and a 100-yard receiver against the Hoosiers, marking the first time in program history to accomplish that feat. Carlos Hyde and Braxton Miller rushed for 156 and 149 yards, respectively, and Devin Smith had 106 receiving yards.
A FIRST LOOK AT THIS RIVALRY
Ohio State and Purdue will be meeting officially for the 55th time on Saturday. Ohio State holds a 37-14-2 advantage in the series, a record that includes a 25-5-2 mark in Ohio Stadium. Purdue has won just twice in Ohio Stadium in the last 60 years with Ohio State owning a 17-2-2 record since the 1952 season. Ohio State has won seven consecutive games in the series in Ohio Stadium, dating to a 31-26 Boilermaker win in 1988.
ONLY 7-0 TEAMS ARE OHIO STATE & OHIO
Ohio State and the Ohio University Bobcats are the only two schools in the country with 7-0 records. The list of unbeaten FBS schools has been reduced to 12 heading into Week 8. Here are the unbeatens:
7-0 - Ohio State (Big Ten)
7-0 - Ohio University (MAC) 6-0 - Kansas State (Big 12) 6-0 - Rutgers (Big East)
6-0 - Louisville (Big East)
6-0 - Notre Dame (Independent)
6-0 - Oregon (Pac 12)
6-0 - Florida (SEC)
6-0 - Alabama (SEC)
6-0 - Mississippi (SEC)
5-0 - Cincinnati (Big East)
5-0 - Oregon State (Pac 12)
JUST THE FIFTH-LONGEST WIN STREAK
Seven consecutive wins for Urban Meyer's Ohio State Buckeyes ranks only fifth for a Meyer-coached team for single season and all-time winning streaks.
Urban Meyer Winning Streaks (all games):
22 - Florida (2008 and 2009)
20 - Utah (2003 and 2004) and Florida (2005)
11 - Florida (2006 and 2007)
11 - Bowling Green (2001 and 2002)
8 - Florida (2010) and Ohio State (2012)
Meyer's Single Season Winning Streaks:
12 - Florida (2009)
10 - Florida (2008)
8 - Bowling Green (2002)
7 - Florida (2006)
7 - Ohio State (2012)
ONLY TWO WITH BETTER STARTS
Only two first-year Ohio State coaches have started a season better than Urban Meyer's 7-0 start to the season: Carol Widdoes went 9-0 in 1944 and eventually won his first 12 games before his first loss; and Earle Bruce opened 11-0 in 1979.
PURDUE: TOUGH IN 2000s; UNDER HOPE
Purdue may trail Ohio State by a decided advantage in the all-time series that spans 93 seasons since the first meeting in 1913, but that's not the case the last 10 years. The Boilermakers have won four of the last 10 games, have split the last six games, and Danny Hope's Purdue teams are, officially, 2-0 vs. the Buckeyes with wins in West Lafayette in 2009 (26-18) and again last year (26-23 in overtime). A 49-0 Ohio State win in 2010 in Ohio Stadium has been vacated.
MORE ON OHIO STATE 52, IU 49
Braxton Miller had 360 yards of total offense - his fifth game this season of more than 300 yards of total offense - with two touchdown passes and a 67-yard touchdown run to spark the Buckeyes offensively against the Hoosiers. Carlos Hyde had a second consecutive career-high in rushing with 156 yards, a powerful 7.1 yards per carry average and TDs rushing (1 yard) and receiving (14). Devin Smith had two touchdown catches of 60 and 42 yards. And the offensive line starred once again by paving the way for 353 rushing yards. Ohio State had a season-high 578 offensive yards and it would need them all as IU scored 22 fourth-quarter points to get to within a successful onsides kick of a potential upset.
BIG EVENING FOR WILSON'S OFFENSE
Kevin Wilson's spread offense caused trouble for the Buckeyes, finishing with 481 total yards, including 352 yards passing, and the sixth-most points ever scored against an Ohio State team: 49. The Hoosiers kept charging despite trailing, 45-27, finishing with 214 fourth-quarter yards and 22 points.
HOWARD/ROBY SPARK SPECIAL PLAY
The game-changing play in a game full of big plays Saturday came on special teams: Travis Howard blocked an Erich Toth punt at the 2 yard line and Bradley Roby recovered in the end zone to give Ohio State a 17-14 lead and enough juice to extend the lead to a 52-34 midway through the fourth quarter. Credit the Ohio State defense for a 3-and-out series that forced the Hoosiers to punt from near their goal line.
Bradley Roby has literally had a hand in each of Ohio State's three Big Ten victories. He opened the 2012 Big Ten season with two interceptions, including a 41-yard return for a touchdown, and a pro-style pass break-up at the goal line vs. Nebraska. He blocked a punt and led the defense with nine tackles vs. Michigan State. And this past week he recovered a blocked punt for a touchdown and had a career-high three pass break-ups.
MEYER TEAMS: 55 BLOCKED KICKS
Urban Meyer-coached teams, from 2001 to the present, have now blocked 55 kicks in 134 games. Four of those have come this year as Orhian Johnson and Adolphus Washington have blocked extra point attempts, Bradley Roby blocked a punt vs. Michigan State and Travis Howard blocked a punt vs. Indiana. (Source for the first 51 blocks: University of Florida stats)
SINCE 2005: 18-0 WHEN BLOCKING A PUNT
Urban Meyer's six Florida teams blocked a total of 21 punts, and they were 16-0 in those games. His Buckeyes have blocked two punts and his teams are now 18-0 when blocking a punt since the start of the 2005 season.
BOREN PLAYS LB
With the loss of team captain and 11-game starting linebacker Etienne Sabino for at least a couple weeks (lower leg), Buckeye coaches approached 45-game fullback vet and 30-game starter Zach Boren about helping out on defense with senior Storm Klein and a bunch of sophomores and freshmen manning the position. Boren responded with a whatever it takes to help the team win attitude; he practiced three days at the position last week and then led the team with five solo tackles and eight total stops against the Hoosiers. He also had a tackle-for-loss.
TWO MORE TDs FOR SMITH
Devin Smith's two long touchdowns vs. Indiana - a 60-yarder in the second quarter and a 46-yarder for Ohio State's final points of the game - give the skilled sophomore 10 career touchdown receptions. Ohio State is 8-0 in games Smith scores a touchdown. The average length of his 10 TD receptions is 39.3 yards and he has three receptions this year over 60 (72 vs. Cal; 63 vs. MSU; 60 vs. Indiana).
AND THE BEAT GOES ON
Urban Meyer has had high-scoring and high performing offenses at each of his previous three coaching positions, and he's doing the same at Ohio State. Through the first seven games this season, his 2012 Buckeyes are reaching scoring milestones that are among the best in school history in terms of points scored in consecutive games and points scored through the first seven games.
Most Points in Consec. Games:
(Last 100 years; Big Ten Conf. member)
142 - 1996: 70 vs. Rice; 72 vs. Pitt
135 - 1915: 128 vs. Oberlin; 7 at Illinois
131 - 1950: 48 at Minnesota; 83 vs. Iowa
115 - 2012: 63 vs. Nebraska; 52 at Indiana
114 - 1993: 63 at Pitt; 51 vs. Northwestern
113 - 1935: 85 vs. Drake; 28 vs. Northwestern
112 - 1978: 63 vs. Northwestern; 49 at Wisconsin
111 - 1983: 56 at Indiana; 55 vs. Northwestern
Most Points First 7 Games:
329 - 1969 (7-0 start and 8-1 final record)
306 - 1996 (7-0 and 11-1)
311 - 1974 (7-0 and 10-2)
283 - 2012 (7-0 and TBD)
277 - 2010 (Vacated)
276 - 1950 (6-1 and 6-3)
272 - 1981 (5-2 and 9-3)
271 - 1973 (7-0 and 10-0-1)
268 - 1998 (7-0 and 11-1)
266 - 2002 (7-0 and 14-0)
724 RUSHING YARDS; 9 TDS LAST TWO
No wonder these guys hang out together: they have fun! Ohio State's offensive line - LT Jack Mewhort , LG Andrew Norwell , C Corey Linsley , RG Marcus Hall , RT Reid Fragel - have powered Ohio State's running game to 724 yards rushing and nine touchdowns the last two games. The 724 yards is the most in one two-game stretch in 32 years, or since the 1980 team combined for 800 yards consecutively vs. Northwestern (418) and Indiana (382).
FROM 21ST TO 8TH NATIONALLY IN RUSHING
Ohio State's power surge on the ground has boosted it to eighth nationally in rushing with 263.6 yards per game. The Buckeyes are averaging 5.8 yards per attempt and have already scored 23 touchdowns on the ground. From a skill position standpoint, here's why the Buckeyes rank among the best:
Howard is second with three interceptions.
Buckeyes who graded out as champions vs. Indiana included on offense: Jeff Heuerman , Jake Stoneburner , Corey Brown , Reid Fragel , Corey Linsley and players of the week (3) Jack Mewhort , Carlos Hyde and Braxton Miller . The special teams player of the week was Travis Howard and he was joined as a champion vs. IU by Ben Buchanan , Bradley Roby , Zach Domicone and Jamal Marcus . Fifteen Buckeyes have graded out at least three times this season as a team "champion" for exceptional play on the field. Corey Brown leads with six (offensive and special team champion play combined).
Game Champion Leaders:
6 - WR Corey Brown
5 - CB Bradley Roby
4 - OL Andrew Norwell
4 - FB Zach Boren
4 - DL Johnathan Hankins
4 - OL Jack Mewhort
3 - DL John Simon
3 - SAF Christian Bryant
3 - WR Devin Smith
3 - TE Jeff Heuerman
3 - OT Reid Fragel
3 - OC Corey Linsley
3 - QB Braxton Miller
3 - RB Carlos Hyde
3 - CB Travis Howard
5 TFLs EARN SIMON 3 NATIONAL AWARDS
John Simon earned three national player of the week honors following his record-tying five tackles-for-loss game against Nebraska: the Chuck Bednarik Award, the Lott IMPACT Trophy and the College Football Performance Award national defensive player of the week awards. Simon, the first Buckeye to ever have a five-TFL game and a four-TFL game, ranks 12th at Ohio State with 37.0 TFLs.
Ohio State Career TFLs:
5. 45.5 - Will Smith (2000-03)
6. 43.5 - Matt Wilhelm (1999-02)
7. 43.0 - Jerome Foster (1979-82)
8. 41.0 - A.J. Hawk (2002-05)
t9. 39.0 - Na'il Diggs (1997-99)
t9. 39.0 - Eric Kumerow (1984-87)
11. 37.5 - Cameron Heyward (2007-10)
12. 36.0 - John Simon (2009-12)
Note: the school record for career TFLs is 66.0 by Mike Vrabel (1993-96)
17 MISSED GAMES
Ohio State has had seven different starters or prospective starters, miss a total of 17 games already this season because of injury. The defensive unit has endured 11 missed games, including losing 11-game starter at linebacker and 46-game veteran Etienne Sabino for the Indiana game and into the foreseeable future.
Games Missed by Prospective Starters:
4 - DL Michael Bennett
4 - RB Jordan Hall
3 - SAF C.J. Barnett
2 - RB Carlos Hyde
2 - DL Nathan Williams
1 - CB Bradley Roby
1 - LB Etienne Sabino
BRAXTON PASSES GEORGE; EYES KERN
Braxton Miller is working on a string of three consecutive games with 300 or more yards of total offense. He had 315 vs. Michigan State, 313 yards vs. Nebraska and 360 last week vs. Indiana. He is averaging 311.8 yards per game and 213.5 for his career. He has 4,057 total offensive yards, good for 14th place on Ohio State's all-time charts. School records for season and career are 270.6 by Joe Germaine in 1998 and 185.2 by Terrelle Pryor , respectively.
Nearing these career total offense totals:
12. 4,414 by Cornelius Greene, 1972-75
13. 4,158 by Rex Kern, 1968-70
14. 4,057 by Braxton Miller , 2011-12
15. 3,768 by Eddie George, 1992-95
BUCHANAN NFF S-A SEMIFINALIST
Senior punter Ben Buchanan is a candidate for the 2012 NFF Scholar-Athlete Award and by virtue, a semifinalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy. Buchanan graduated cum lauda and with a 3.53 GPA in June with a degree in strategic communications. His resume is full of community service activities and accomplishments and he is a nominee for the 2012 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team. He was a finalist for the 2011 Weurffel Trophy which goes to the player who best combines exemplary community service with athletic and academic achievement.
Corey Brown SETS 15-YEAR BEST
Corey Brown tied the fourth-best game in Ohio State history with 12 receptions vs. Michigan State. The total was the most in a game for an Ohio State receiver in 15 years, or since David Boston set the school record with 14 vs. Penn State in 1997. His 32 receptions through the first five games of the season tied Terry Glenn's total in 1995 as the most catches through the first five games.
Top 5 Receiving Games by a Buckeye:
14 - David Boston at Penn State, 1997
13 - David Boston at Indiana, 1996
13 - Gary Williams vs. Florida State, 1981
12 - Corey Brown at Michigan State, 2012
12 - Billy Anders vs. Washington, 1966
12 - Bob Grimes vs. Pitt, 1952
20 70-PLUS YARD DRIVES THIS SEASON
Ohio State has 20 drives this season of 70 or more yards with all 20 resulting in touchdowns. Last year, Ohio State had nine drives of 70 or more yards and in 2010, 20 such drives.
Driving 70 (or more) for scores in 2012:
Miami - 83 and 73 yards
Central Florida - 71 and 76 yards
California - 75, 75 and 75 yards
UAB - 75, 75 and 71 yards
MSU - 75 and 74 yards
Nebraska - 75, 75 and 75 yards
Indiana - 75, 77, 75, 78 and 75 yards
RED ZONE STREAK ENDS AT 22
Ohio State had scored on 22 consecutive trips inside the opponent's red zone (19 TDs; 3 FGs), dating back to the fourth quarter of the Miami game until a missed field goal vs. Indiana snapped the streak. Ohio State has converted on 26 of 30 trips into the red zone (86.7 pct.) to rank seventh in the Big Ten. Its 23 red zone touchdowns are most in the league.
ODDS & END ZONES...