Brief Game Outlook
Outsiders might not see this as a big game when No. 8 Ohio State (10-1, 6-1) hosts TTUN (7-4, 3-4) today in The Shoe.
Astute college fans nationwide know that's not the case. The records don't matter, the rankings don't matter and the hype doesn't matter when the Buckeyes and TTUN meet.
Even with TTUN still somewhat in rebuilding mode (especially on defense), the hate and utter disdain between these two programs, fan bases and neighboring states matters, and is unmatched.
That is why this rivalry has always, and will always, rank as the best rivalry in all of sports, period.
Ohio State has at least a share of the Big Ten title and a potential BCS Bowl invitation on the line today.
If Wisconsin and Michigan State were to lose to Northwestern and Penn State respectively, the Buckeyes would win the title outright with a win over their hated rival TTUN from TSUN (a.k.a. the team up North, from the state up North).
Under coach Rich Rodriguez, TTUN has missed going to a bowl game the last two years. This year, win or lose against the Buckeyes, the Wolverines are bowl-eligible at 7-4 entering the game, but Dickrod's seat could still be hot this offseason.
Despite Buckeye fans hoping that a contract extension is offered to Rodriguez, there will be serious discussions about replacing him if his squad suffers yet another embarrassing loss to the Buckeyes.
QB Denard Robinson won the starting job this season, but last year's starter, Tate Forcier, has also seen some live game action.
Expect the offense to be able to move the ball and even put up a few scores.
That's where the positive thoughts on TTUN come to an end.
There are only 11 teams in the entire FBS that give up more points than TTUN. Calling TTUN's defense as weak as a wet paper towel is an insult to the paper towel.
Terrelle Pryor, Boom Herron and company should find little to no resistance from the nation's 99th ranked scoring defense (33.5 points per game allowed).
The Buckeye offense is ninth in the nation in scoring average (39.6 points per game), and hitting that average (and more) shouldn't be a challenge.
TTUN is averaging 36.8 points per game (15th in the nation), while the Buckeyes defense is only allowing 13.9 points per game (fifth in the nation).
The Buckeyes look to continue their recent dominance in the series, while TTUN hopes to make their season by pulling the upset.
You can bet when toe meets leather at Noon this Saturday, that both teams will be ramped-up and ready for this one—the 107th edition of THE GAME.
Ohio State—TTUN History Lesson
• This will be the 107th meeting between Ohio State and TTUN.
• Ohio State trails in the all-time series, 43-57-6.
• From 1897-1918, OSU played TTUN 15 times, losing 13 times and playing to two ties, a 0-0 tie in 1900, and a 3-3 tie in 1910.
• Ohio State's first-ever win over TTUN came in 1919 by a final score of 13-3.
• Since 1919, Ohio State is 43-43-5 head-to-head against TTUN.
• In what is widely considered the modern era of college football (1951-present day), Ohio State is 31-26-2 vs. TTUN.
• Ohio State is 6-3-1 in the last 10 home meetings vs. TTUN (1990-2008).
• Ohio State is 10-9-1 in the last 20 meetings overall vs. TTUN (1990-2009).
• Ohio State's last home loss to TTUN was in 2000 by a score of 38-26.
• Ohio State's last home win vs. TTUN was a 42-7 victory in 2008.
• Ohio State is 18-2 in their last 20 November games (2004-10).
• Ohio State is 28-4 in November games under Jim Tressel (2001-10).
• Terrelle Pryor is now 29-4 as Ohio State's starting quarterback (2-0 vs. TTUN).
• Jim Tressel is 8-1 overall (4-0 at home, 4-1 on the road) vs. TTUN.
• Ohio State's defense has allowed just two 100-yard rushers in their last 35 games.
• Ohio State could clinch their record-ninth BCS bowl game invitation with a win over TTUN today.
• Ohio State has won 34 Big Ten titles—having now won or shared five in a row (2005-09).
• Ohio State claims seven national championships and has had six Heisman winners (seven trophies).
• The Ohio State football program currently has an overall record of 829-309-53 (1890-2010).
• This is head coach Rich Rodriguez's third season at TTUN (15-20).
• The TTUN football program is the all-time leader in wins, currently with 884.
• TTUN claims 11 national titles, the last being a split title in 1997. Prior to that, TTUN's last title was in 1948.
• TTUN has won 42 Big Ten titles, the last being a co-championship in 2004 (Iowa).
• The TTUN football program began play in 1879 and currently has an overall record of 884-305-36.
Final Score Prediction
Ohio State 41, TTUN 17
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