Check out our LGHL Ohio State-Wisconsin postgame show:
Ohio State just beat Wisconsin in overtime. Let's talk about it.Posted by Land-Grant Holy Land - For Ohio State fans on Saturday, October 15, 2016
The Ohio State Buckeyes were able to squeeze out an overtime win against the Wisconsin Badgers, 30-23 in Madison.
The Ohio State defense, as it seems to do early in games, looked a tad shaky. Wisconsin looked like they were well on their way to a touchdown on their first drive, until the defense hunkered down, and held the Badgers to a field goal.
The Badgers’ next drive opened up with a boom, as running back Corey Clement ran 68 yards to the Ohio State 27-yard line. Later in the drive, Alex Hornibrook would hit Jazz Peavy with a 24-yard touchdown pass, putting the Badgers up 10-0 after the extra point.
The ensuing Ohio State drive looked better than they had put together up to that point in the game but once they got into the red zone, they weren’t able to dial up that touchdown producing play, and settled for a field goal, making it a 10-3 deficit.
The Ohio State offense started to look better as the second quarter progressed, but after a lengthy drive in the middle of the second quarter, another field goal was settled for, making it a 10-6 game.
Wisconsin’s offense kept finding ways to chip away at the Ohio State defense. Yet again working their way into the red zone. After a holding call negated a Corey Clement touchdown, the Badgers settled for another field goal, making it a 13-6 game late in the first half. The Badgers weren’t done there, though. They added another field goal before the half, going into the locker room up 16-6.
Dontre Wilson gave us all a scare with a muffed punt after Wisconsin’s first possession, but the Buckeyes worked their way up the field, as J.T. Barrett had a 22-yard run to get the Bucks on the Wisconsin 14-yard line. Then, the rain started pouring, and two plays later, Barrett threw an interception in the end zone.
The Buckeyes would recover. After starting their second drive of the second half at the Wisconsin 47, they went on a nearly five-minute drive, that was capped off by a J.T. Barrett rushing touchdown to make it a 16-13 game. Mike Weber was a big part of the drive, after being virtually non-existent the first half.
Gareon Conley came up with the defense’s first huge play of the game, intercepting Alex Hornibrook at the Wisconsin 38-yard line. It led to yet another J.T. Barrett rushing touchdown, and gave the Buckeyes their first lead of the game at 20-16.
Just when it seemed like Ohio State was gaining all of the momentum, the Badgers went on one of their quick drives down the field. This time, the Ohio State defense gave up its first rushing touchdown all season long to fullback Austin Ramesh. The Badgers were up 23-20, with 7:54 remaining.
The Buckeyes maintained their composure on the following offensive drive. Barrett hadn’t had the best night, but when the Buckeyes needed a drive, he was delivering. He hit Dontre Wilson on a beautiful 43-yard pass to the Wisconsin 21. He nearly converted on a 3rd and 5, but was tripped up. Tyler Durbin came to the rescue again, and the game was tied up at 23-23 with 3:57 remaining.
The Badgers looked like they were putting together another drive, but a holding penalty set them back, and the Buckeyes forced a punt with 49 seconds left in the game. They would elect to take the game into overtime.
Ohio State had first dibs in overtime, and was able to find the end zone as J.T. Barrett hit Noah Brown in the corner of the end zone. With that pass, Barrett broke Braxton Miller’s career touchdowns accounted for record with 89. Alex Hornibrook and the Badgers had a big pass of their own to get set up on the 4-yard line. The Buckeyes were able to hold inside the five, for the win.
3 things we learned:
1. The passing game still needs fixing. There were really no signs of this getting better. It’s been clear that this has been the greatest issue with this year’s squad, and Saturday night continued the trend. J.T. Barrett had six completions to five different receivers in the first half, but they were never able to string anything together. Each seemed like a surprise, and made the offense very painful to watch.
Barrett wasn’t favoring any receiver, spreading out his targets pretty evenly in the first half, with all receivers either being looked at either two or three times. Barrett missed pretty badly on a couple of throws, one under-thrown to Noah Brown, and another to a wide open Curtis Samuel in the end zone was over-thrown. Early in the second half as the Buckeyes were driving, Barrett over threw yet another receiver, and the Badgers picked it off in the end zone. Late in the second half, Barrett came through for the Buckeyes. But we need to see four quarters of good football through the air.
2. A non-existent running game early hurt. Ohio State had just five rushing attempts in the second quarter, and it’s been one of their strengths during the season. After the first drive in which Curtis Samuel got all of the touches at running back, it was apparent something was up with Mike Weber. He has just four touches in the first half, one in the entire second quarter. The reason for this isn’t known, but it certainly didn’t help having the Big Ten’s leader in rushing essentially absent from the game.
This hurt the Buckeyes passing game, because without that threat on the ground, they were much easier to defend. But after Mike Weber was given carries in the second half, things turned around quickly for the Ohio State offense. He had five carries in the third quarter, including a big bruising run to convert on a 4th and 1 on the Wisconsin 27-yard line. Weber also threw a key block on a J.T. Barrett run late in the 4th. Whatever went on in the first half of this game, hopefully we never see it again.
3. Wisconsin came prepared. There’s no questioning that an extra week to prepare for a big game is an advantage. The Badgers had just come off of a grueling 14-7 loss in Ann Arbor against Michigan, and had plenty of time to prepare for the Bucks, while still feeling pretty good about how they played one of the best teams in the nation. Offensively, the Badgers definitely knew what to expect from the Bucks. Ohio State’s ends were collapsing early, and it led to plenty of sweeps by the Badgers offense, a few broken off for big gains.
Greg Schiano and Ohio State’s defense were able to make adjustments in the second half. It was immediately obvious at the end of the third quarter, after they held Wisconsin to just 11 total yards and looked like a completely different unit, especially the secondary. Gareon Conley picked off Alex Hornibrook towards the end of the quarter, helping the Bucks gain some much needed momentum. All things considered though, Wisconsin was prepared for Saturday night, and it definitely showed.