Ohio State Falls 40-34 at No. 15 Michigan in Regular Season Finale
Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller (5) runs for a 19-yard touchdown. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Nov. 26, 2011
ANN ARBOR, Mich. - Ohio State's late comeback attempt fell short as the Buckeyes dropped a 40-34 decision to No. 15 Michigan in front of 114,132 fans at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor. The loss snaps Ohio State's six-game win streak over Michigan while the Buckeyes conclude the regular season with a 6-6 record, 3-5 in the Big Ten, and the Wolverines improve to 10-2, 6-2 in conference play.
Braxton Miller scrambled for seven yards on 4th-and-6 to start the Buckeyes' final possession but was intercepted on the following fourth down when his pass deflected off the hands of Devin Smith and was caught by Courtney Avery.
Miller threw for a career-high 235 yards, ran for 100 and accounted for three touchdowns but a dinged up Buckeye defense could not slow down a Denard Robinson, who threw for 167 yards, ran for 170 and had a hand in all five Michigan touchdowns.
The Buckeyes took an early 7-0 lead with a six play, 80-yard drive capped by a 54-yard touchdown pass from Miller to a wide open Corey "Philly" Brown.
Michigan answered right back on its second drive of the game when Robinson found room along the left sideline for 41 yards to tie the game at seven. The Wolverines then took the 9-7 lead on a holding call in the end zone after the Buckeyes were forced into a third and 27 from their own 3-yard line. On the ensuing drive, Robinson found Junior Hemingway for a 26-yard touchdown pass to give Michigan a 16-7 advantage.
Drew Basil then cut the Michigan lead to 16-10 with a 45-yard field goal on the Buckeyes' first drive of the second quarter. After Travis Howard forced and recovered a Robinson fumble at the Michigan 31-yard line on the next Wolverine possession, Miller gave the Buckeyes the lead with a 19-yard touchdown scamper to make it 17-16 Ohio State.
However, Michigan answered back with a nine play, 80-yard drive capped by a six-yard touchdown run by Robinson to give the Wolverines the 23-17 lead.
The Buckeyes then responded with a 43-yard touchdown pass from Miller to DeVier Posey to cap a back-and-forth first half that resulted in a five lead changes and a 24-23 Ohio State advantage.
Michigan opened the second half with an 11 play, 80-yard drive that resulted in a 20-yard touchdown pass from Robinson to Martavious Odoms to regain the lead at 30-24.
With just over a minute remaining in the third quarter and Michigan about to punt from its own 49-yard line, Wolverine punter, Will Hagerup dropped the snap and was tackled by Tyler Moeller at the Michigan 32. The Buckeyes were able to move the ball inside the Michigan 5-yard line and were able to muster a 21-yard field goal by Basil to make it 30-27 in favor of the Maize and Blue.
The Wolverines answered right back when Robinson found Kevin Koger with a four-yard touchdown pass to cap an eight play, 75-yard drive to take a 37-27 lead to open the fourth quarter.
Ohio State was able to cut the lead to 37-34 with an 80-yard touchdown drive in which Miller completed three passes for 72 yards and Daniel "Boom" Herron punched it in from four yards out with 7:09 remaining.
Michigan advanced the ball to the Ohio State 1-yard line on the following drive only to have a touchdown run by Robinson negated by holding and personal foul penalties as Brendan Gibbons connected on a 43-yard field goal to extend the lead to 40-34 with 1:59 left in the game.