The Buckeyes went into Piscataway as the number 1 team in the country according to the first CFP Poll, and based on their performance, and what happens around the country, they will have a tough time keeping that spot. Let’s give credit to Greg Schiano for closing the gap for a once bottom dwelling Rutgers team, and the Scarlet Knights took advantage of the Buckeye mistakes. Ohio State still have not given up more than 17 points this season. If they keep playing good defense, they can be number 1.
Can we tell Ryan Day in the first half that it is actually the second half? The Buckeyes had 6 possessions in the first half, which 1 went for a touchdown, 4 went for punts, 1 turnover on downs after a failed fake punt, and then an interception with under 2 minutes to go in the half and leading 7-6.
Rutgers out gained the Buckeyes, and had more first downs and time of possession, but the Buckeyes had the most point in the scoreboard, and at the end of the day, that is what is most important in this year’s college football season.
Kyle McCord broke CJ Stroud’s consecutive completions record with 18 when you included his passes last game against Wisconsin, but was not extended after a drop from Julian Fleming. His numbers were a little pedestrian, throwing for 189 yards with 3 touchdowns and 1 interception.
TreVeyon Henderson was the offense in this game, and he earned all of his yards. He had 22 carries for 128 yards and a touchdown. He also caught 5 passes for 80 yards. Chip Trayanum, Xavier Johnson, and Emeka Egbuka also got carries in the game, but for a combines 4 carries for 15 yards.
After Henderson, Carnell Tate was the second leading receiver with 2 catches for 31 yards. Emeka Egbuka returned after missing the last few games, and had 4 catches for 29 yards. Marvin Harrison Jr’s streak of 100 yard games ended this week, as he only had 4 catches for 25 yards, but two of those passes were for touchdowns. Shout out to Gee Scott Jr, who had 3 catches for 24 yards and an athletic touchdown, and raised his hand up to the sky for his mother who passed away.
Rutgers proved to be a tougher opponent than they have been in years past, but the turning point of the game was on Rutgers first drive in the second half. The were driving, and chewing up over 5 minutes of game time until Jordan Hancock picked off the tipped passed from Wimsatt, and took it back 93 yards. That set up the lead back for the Buckeyes 14-9 after trailing 7-9 going into halftime, and the Buckeyes never gave up the lead after that.
Stars of the Game
1 Star Player of the Game – Kyle Monangai. Give credit to where credit is due for the Rutgers running back, who rushed for 159 yards against this defense, and highlighted by the 45 yard 4th down run play which set up a field goal for Rutgers.
2 Star Player of the Game – Jordan Hancock, who picked off Wimsatt on Rutgers first series in the second half, and returned it to the house for a 93 yard interception return, and gave back the Buckeyes lead.
3 Star Player of the Game – TreVeyon Henderson, who was the Ohio State offense this game. After go for 204 total yards last week against Wisconsin, he followed up with a 208 yard game, when the rest of the team account for 124 yards.
The first ranked Buckeyes won late in the game, and although it was not their best game, still won by 19 points without 3 of their starting secondary by the end of the game, and McCord is dealing with an injury to his ankle still. Notre Dame losing to Clemson did not help their strength of schedule, nor did Indiana defeating Wisconsin. However, the most important thing for the Buckeyes is to keep the 0 in the loss column. The outcomes of the Georgia and Michigan game will impact how the Buckeyes will be ranking in next weeks CFP, but I still think it is safe to say they will be ranked in the top 3 in all polls.
Ohio State (9-0) will head back home to host Michigan State (3-6) at 7:30pm on NBC.
Rutgers (6-3) will travel to face off against Iowa (6-2).