I understand why there might be a temptation to pump this game up a bit. After all, College GameDay should be there. The Indiana Hoosiers are 4-0, with a bowl bid a very attainable goal, and there's a lot to like. Nate Sudfeld is healthy and making good decisions. They've picked up where Tevin Coleman left off, as former UAB-Trogdor Jordan Howard leads the entire dang country in rushing yards. There should even be a lot of Indiana fans at the game, a welcome departure from many recent Buckeye trips to Bloomington. Add all of that to the growing belief that Ohio State is mortal this season, and you have a recipe for a tight game, if not an upset. I can see why you might be tempted to think Indiana could even win.
But can they? Nah. Ohio State is still going to beat Indiana. They're probably going to beat Indiana by a lot. They almost always do.
It's not an exaggeration to say that there are few things more consistent in college football than Ohio State beating Indiana. The Hoosiers have not recorded an actual win over the Buckeyes since 1988. They have beaten Ohio State just twice since 1952. Now, Indiana isn't the only Big Ten team to have huge losing streaks against Ohio State. After all, Northwestern and Minnesota have only beaten the Buckeyes once in my lifetime as well. But Indiana, historically, hasn't come close. Since their 27-27 tie back in 1990, Indiana has come within seven points of Ohio State just three times, in 1991, 1993, and the famous 2012 shootout, which Ohio State won 52-49.
Even that game, lest we forget, Ohio State led 52-34 with about six minutes left in the game, and Indiana needed to convert an onside kick and get a little luck in the closing minutes to narrow the margin. It wasn't that close.
Those are a lot of numbers. To help provide some context into just long it has been since Indiana played Ohio State and didn't lose, here are some major milestones that have happened in my life during that time period
- Attended and graduated elementary school
- Started middle school
- Beat Pokemon Red
- Completed middle school
- Beat Pokemon Snap
- Started high school
- Beat Pokemon Stadium
- Got a drivers license
- Graduated from high school
- Graduated from Ohio State University
- Got married
- Beat Pokemon Gold
- Had a daughter