Last Saturday, the Ohio State Buckeyes facilitated the total dismantling of the Michigan State Spartans--a feat which ultimately propelled them four spots upwards to become a legitimate if not outside contender for the College Football Playoff. The Buckeyes were running on all cylinders as the offense, led by the line, ran for 300-plus yards against what had previously been a stout rushing defense. The defense held the Spartans to just three points. And special teams, which have been abysmal for most of the season, did not generate too many errors.
Now, Ohio State has something of a letdown before they head to Ann Arbor, Mich., to face Michigan as they face the Fighting Illini of Illinois for the Illibuck trophy. The Illini, under head coach Lovie Smith, are 2-8 on the season and are riding an eight-game losing streak. They have played three different quarterbacks this season, and four of their five offensive linemen are freshmen. Similarly, most players on the defense are freshmen or sophomores. Essentially, Illinois is overmatched in every category against a surging Ohio State squad.
Today is also senior day for the Ohio State team, as the program will recognize 19 seniors, including J.T. Barrett, Billy Price and Tyquan Lewis, among others. It will be the last game in the Horseshoe for a class that has made two appearances in the College Football Playoff and produced some of the highest-scoring offenses in program history.
Ohio State holds a 67-30-4 overall record against the Illini. It doesn’t look like Illinois will begin chipping away at that gap starting this season.
When is the game and how can I watch?
Game Date/Time: Saturday, Nov. 18, 3:30 p.m. ET
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Radio: 97.1 FM/1460 AM
Where is GameDay today?
The College Gameday crew is headed to Madison, Wisc., ahead of the matchup between undefeated Wisconsin and No. 24 Michigan. The Badgers, who are sitting at No. 5 in the latest College Football Playoff poll, clinched the Big Ten West last week with a win over Iowa. They are joined by Alabama, Miami and UCF as the only four undefeated teams left nationally. This matchup will be the first featuring Wisconsin that Gameday has featured this season.
What’s the rest of the Big Ten up to this weekend?
In a strange turn of events, Gameday’s matchup of No. 24 Michigan at No. 5 Wisconsin will be a noon game on FOX. Also at noon, Minnesota heads to No. 23 Northwestern and Rutgers faces Indiana, both on BTN. At 3:30 p.m., Iowa plays Purdue in Iowa City on BTN. At 4 p.m., Nebraska kicks off against No. 10 Penn State in Happy Valley on FS1 while Maryland travels to No. 17 Michigan State on FOX.
Join the conversation
Below is your Ohio State-Illinois GameThread. Be respectful, be kind and as always, keep it classy. If you like GIFs, lay ‘em on us. In all, be good fans, cheer for your teams, be cool to each other (even if somebody else isn’t) and everyone wins. Let’s keep the season going strong.