Oct. 24, 2011
Ohio State (4-3, 1-2) vs. #15 Wisconsin (6-1, 2-1)
Saturday, Oct. 29, 2011
8 p.m. ET
Ohio Stadium (102,329) - Columbus, Ohio
Television: ESPN will televise the game with Brad Nessler and Todd Blackledge in the booth and Holly Rowe on the the sidelines.
Radio: WBNS (FM 97.1 The Fan) is the flagship station for the 73-station Ohio State radio network. The Luke Fickell pregame show airs 30 minutes prior to kickoff. Paul Keels will call the play-by-play with former Buckeye Jim Lachey in the booth and Marty Bannister on the sidelines. The game can also be heard live on Sirius-XM satellite radio and Westwood One.
First and 10
About the Badgers
Wisconsin is ranked No. 15 in the latest BCS standings with a 6-1 overall record and a 2-1 mark in the Big Ten Leaders Division. Its only blemish came at the hands of Michigan State on a last-second, 44-yard Hail Mary TD pass at the end of regulation that handed UW its first setback of the season, 37-31. The loss snapped a nine-game conference winning streak by the Badgers along with their 13-game regular-season winning streak.
The Badgers enter Saturday's game at the Horseshoe ranked No. 5 nationally in scoring, averaging 47.3 points per game. They also rank in the Top 10 in the NCAA in rushing (8th, 252.1 ypg), total offense (8th, 511.7) and passing efficiency (2nd, 193.1). Junior running back Monte Ball leads the nation in scoring at 16.29 points per game and is 15th with 109.7 rushing yards per game -- good for second best in the Big Ten. Quarterback Russell Wilson leads the Big Ten and is second nationally in passer efficiency (204.9). He has completed 109 of 149 pass attempts for 1,780 yards with 16 TDs and three interceptions.
The other side of the ball has posted some of the better defensive numbers in the country as well, ranking in the Top 10 in total defense (9th, 286.7 ypg), fewest points allowed (6th, 13.5 ppg) and pass defense (4th, 165.5 ypg). They also rank second in punt returns with a 20.0 ypg average. Sophomore linebacker Chris Borland leads the team with 71 tackles and 10.0 TFL to go along with 2.0 sacks and one interception.
Bret Bielema (Iowa, 1992) is in his sixth season as the head coach with a 55-17 record entering Saturday's game. He has led the Badgers to bowl appearances all five seasons, including a trip to the Rose Bowl last season.
The series between the Buckeyes and the Badgers, which dates back to 1913, shows Ohio State with a 53-17-5 lead. In games played in Columbus, the Buckeyes lead 29-7-3. In games played in Madison, the Buckeyes lead 24-10-2. Ohio State has an 8-5-1 advantage over the last 14 meetings (back through 1980). The Buckeyes have won the last three meetings between the squads. (Note: the 2010 season was vacated by The Ohio State University).
Ohio State to Wear Advanced Nike Uniforms for Wisconsin Game
Ohio State will be donning uniquely designed, highly advanced Nike uniforms Saturday against Wisconsin, honoring the 50th anniversary of The Ohio State University's undefeated 1961 championship season -- a distinctive milestone that provides a source of inspiration for a program steeped in tradition and rooted in pride. The 2011 Nike Pro Combat system of dress design for the Buckeyes harkens back to that team, whose offensive power lived in its backfield, led by the 6'0, 227 pound All-American fullback, Bob Ferguson. The Heisman runner-up was a power runner and contributed immensely to the team's noteworthy speed, aggression and smarts. This uniform acknowledges the dominance of the 1961.
Distinctive white block lettering on Ohio State's bold scarlet jersey is accompanied by gray sleeve and collar accents that provide a retro look high in contrast. An inscription of the year "1961" on the inner neckline, socks and sleeves act as a silent reminder of the indisputable determination of that year's lineup. A steel gray baselayer and matching arm sleeves feature a print reminiscent of a buckeye tree. These two pieces are patterned after Buckeye Grove - home to a collection of buckeye trees planted in honor of each first team All-American player, like Ferguson, whose presence always commanded respect. Dark gray pants complement the baselayer design, emblazoned with a prominent block `O' on the hip alongside a scarlet streak on the pant leg.
Saturday will be the 90th Homecoming celebrated at Ohio State with the Buckeyes 64-19-5 in Homecoming games. The 2010 game is not reflected in the overall record.
Stoneburner on John Mackey Midseason Watch List
Jake Stoneburner was named to the midseason watch list for the John Mackey Award, given annually to the nation's top tight end. He is one of 25 individuals under consideration for the award.
Stoneburner, a fourth-year junior from the Columbus suburb of Dublin and a family resource management major, leads the Buckeyes with 12 receptions (for 150 yards) and six touchdowns. He caught his sixth touchdown pass Saturday against Illinois, a 17-yarder from Braxton Miller that was the only completion on the day for Ohio State in its 17-7 win over the 16th-ranked and previously unbeaten Illini.
Some Notes From Champaign
Stoneburner's Fifth in Career TDs
Jake Stoneburner has moved into a tie for fifth place among Ohio State tight ends with eight career touchdown receptions. The junior caught his fifth touchdown this season - a 32-yard screen pass from Braxton Miller with blocking assistance from Mike Brewster and Mike Adams - in the first quarter against Nebraska and his sixth with a 17-yarder from Miller at Illinois.
Tight End Touchdowns
10 - John Lumpkin (1996-98)
9 - Rickey Dudley (1994-95)
9 - Charles Bryant (1959-61)
9 - Darnell Sanders (1999-01)
8 - Jan White (1968-70)
8 - Robert Grimes (1950-52)
8 - Jake Stoneburner (2009-present)
2011 Receiving TDs by FBS Tight Ends
|1.||Coby Fleener, Stanford||7|
|2.||Jacob Pederson, Wisconsin||6|
|Jake Stoneburner, Ohio State||6|
|4.||Ladarius Green, Louisiana||5|
|Dwayne Allen, Clemson||5|
|David Blackburn, Central Michigan||5|
|Nick Provo, Syracuse||5|
Basil's Streak Reaches Eight
Kicker Drew Basil, after missing the first four attempts of his career (including two from over 50 yards last year), has now made eight consecutive field goals after a 43-yarder at Illinois. He is 8 of 10 on field goals this season plus 19 for 19 on extra points.
Boom Sharp In Return
Dan "Boom" Herron, in his first game of the season, looked sharp and strong in netting 114 rushing yards off 23 carries plus scored on a 12-yard TD run to give the Buckeyes a 10-0 third quarter lead at Illinois Oct. 15. Herron had a long gain of 21 yards on a day when the Illini were asked only to stop the run as the Buckeyes attempted just four passes and completed one on a swirling-windy day in Champaign, Ill. The 100-yard game was the fourth for Herron.
Herron was a first-team all-Big Ten running back last year after rushing for 1,155 yards and scoring 16 touchdowns. The senior has 2,308 career rushing yards - tied for 16th at Ohio State - and 30 rushing touchdowns.
Herron had three 100-yard performances in the final five games of last season. He had 114 at Minnesota, a career-high 190 at Penn State and 175 in the win over Michigan, including a penalty-shortened 89-yard run that was the longest play from scrimmage in school history. Herron rushed for at least one touchdown in each of the final 12 games of the 2010 season.
More on Boom ...
Five Consecutive Leaders Games
The game this week against the Badgers is the second during a stretch of five consecutive games against Leaders Division opponents for the Buckeyes before closing out with the traditional season-ender vs. Michigan, which is situated in the Legends Division.
Roby Making Name for Himself
Redshirt freshman cornerback Bradley Roby is tied for second in the Big Ten with three interceptions this season. His latest came in the win at Illinois when he returned a third-quarter INT 36 yards down the sidelines to set up Ohio State's first touchdown. He is tied with teammate C.J. Barnett for fourth in the Big Ten with six passes defended and has 21 tackles and 3.0 TFL from his cornerback position.
Buchanan Now at 17 I20
Another fine punting game by Ben Buchanan at Illinois included two more punts inside the 20. Buchanan ranks fourth nationally and leads the Big Ten with 17 punts inside the 20. He also leads with 42 punts. His 41.3 yard average ranks sixth in the Big Ten.
The Buckeyes boast an all-time record of 361-128-28 in October games. Ohio State is 247-64-20 in October home games and 115-64-8 on the road that month.
Miller Solid in Starting Debut
Braxton Miller, just the third freshman to start at quarterback for Ohio State, rushed for 83 yards, passed for 83 yards and threw two touchdown passes to Devin Smith to lead Ohio State to a 37-17 win over Colorado Sept. 24 at Ohio Stadium. Miller and Smith hooked up on a 32-yard score in the second quarter to increase the lead to 17-0 and a 17-yard TD connection in the third to extend the lead to 27-7. Miller was 5 of 13 passing and he gained all of his rushing yards in the first half as he staked the Buckeyes to a 20-7 halftime lead. He did not have any turnovers despite constant blitzing from the Colorado defenders.
Miller has played in five games thus far in his Buckeye career, completing 25 of 47 passes for 386 yards with four TDs and one INT. He also has carried 49 times for 209 yards. He totaled a season-high 186 yards of total offense at No. 14 Nebraska through two and a half quarters before leaving the game with an ankle injury.
Miller led Wayne High School to the Division I state title game in 2010 while passing for 2,167 yards and 17 TDs while rushing for 658 yards and 17 TDs as a senior. He had a career record of 31-7 over three seasons and was a finalist for Ohio's Mr. Football. A first team all-state selection, he also played in the 2010 Under Armour All-American Game.
Braxton's Finest Hour Cut Short
Freshman quarterback Braxton Miller was enjoying his finest game as a Buckeye through two-and-a-half quarters vs. Nebraska. His rushing - career-high 91 yards - and passing - 5 of 8 for 95 yards with one touchdown - had staked the Buckeyes to a 27-6 lead against No. 14 Nebraska in wet and louder than loud Memorial Stadium. His third quarter fumble just inside of the 8 minute mark led to a quick Cornhusker score and he left the game for good on his next series with a sprained ankle. The Cornhuskers eventually rallied with 28 consecutive points to claim a 34-27 victory.
Brewster Reaches 43 Straight
All-American center Mike Brewster started his 43rd consecutive game Saturday at Nebraska. The senior from Orlando, Fla. made his first start in Game 4 of the 2008 season vs. Troy and started the final 10 games of the season. He started all 13 games in 2009 and 2010, respectively, in addition to the first six games this year.
Red Zone Efficiency
Ohio State has scored 18 of 21 times (85.7 percent) this season inside the 20 with 13 touchdowns and five field goals. The only three times the Buckeyes have failed to score came on a fumble and on two end-of-game possessions against Akron and Colorado while running out the clock.
Since Rod Smith's fumble in the first quarter against Akron, Ohio State has scored on 17 consecutive red zone possessions if you don't count the two possessions in which the Buckeyes took a knee to run out the clock.
Noting the Buckeyes
The Silver Bullet Defense
The Buckeyes have a long-standing tradition of producing the best defenses in the Big Ten and the nation year in, year out and rank in the top 25 nationally in several defensive categories in 2011. Here are some bullets that put into perspective the Silver Bullets dominance:
|Year||PPG Allowed||FBS Rank|
Fewest 100-yd rushers allowed (FBS Teams Since 2005)
Fewest 100-yd rushers allowed (FBS Teams Since 2007)
Last Nine players to rush for 100 yards since 2007:
|10/8/11||Taylor Martinez||at Nebraska||17-102|
|10/8/11||Rex Burkhead||at Nebraska||26-119|
|9/17/11||Lamar Miller||at Miami||26-184|
|11/27/10||D. Robinson||Michigan||18 -105|
|10/16/10||John Clay||at Wisconsin||21-104|
|9/13/08||Joe McKnight||at USC||12-105|
|9/15/07||Jake Locker||at Washington||14-102|
Head Coach Luke Fickell
Michigan - 890
Texas - 853
Notre Dame - 849
Nebraska - 843
Penn State - 824
Ohio State - 823
Oklahoma - 817
Alabama - 810
Not Since 1922-24
Ohio State ranks second among all NCAA Div. I programs with 85 consecutive seasons since last posting back-to-back losing records. The Buckeyes have not been under .500 for two or more consecutive seasons since 1922-24, which trails only Tennessee; the Vols have not had back-to-back losing seasons since 1909-11, a span of 98 consecutive seasons.
Big Ten Announces 2013-14 Football Schedule
The Big Ten Conference has announced its 2013 and 2014 conference football schedules. Ohio State, a member of the Leaders division, will play four home and four away league contests in each of those seasons.
In 2013, OSU opens Big Ten play hosting Wisconsin Sept. 28. Other Big Ten games in 2013: Oct. 5 at Northwestern; Oct. 19 vs. Iowa; Oct. 26 vs. Penn State; Nov. 2 at Purdue; Nov. 16 at Illinois; Nov. 23 vs. Indiana; Nov. 30 at Michigan.
Ohio State has two non-conference dates confirmed for the 2013 season: Aug. 31 vs. Vanderbilt at Ohio Stadium; and Sept. 14 at California.
In 2014, Ohio State begins Big Ten action hosting Purdue Oct. 4. Other Big Ten contests in 2014: Oct. 18 at Iowa; Oct. 25 vs. Northwestern; Nov. 1 at Wisconsin; Nov. 8 vs. Illinois; Nov. 15 at Penn State; Nov. 22 at Indiana; Nov. 29 vs. Michigan.
The Buckeyes' non-conference games for 2014 are Aug. 30 vs. Navy in Baltimore; followed by three games at Ohio Stadium: Sept. 6 vs. Cincinnati; Sept. 13 vs. Kent State; and Sept. 20 vs. Virginia Tech.
Big Ten to Play Nine Conference Games Beginning with 2017 Season
The Big Ten will move to a nine-game conference schedule beginning with the 2017 season.
Three teams each from the Legends Division and Leaders Division will feature five conference home games during odd-numbered years, while the other three schools from each division will host five conference contests during even-numbered years. The 2017 schedule will include five conference home outings for Iowa, Michigan State and Nebraska from the Legends Division and Illinois, Indiana and Ohio State from the Leaders Division. The 2018 schedule will feature five Big Ten home games for Michigan, Minnesota and Northwestern of the Legends Division and Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin of the Leaders Division. The Big Ten will return to a full nine-game conference schedule for the first time since the 1983 and 1984 seasons. Eight of 10 conference schools played nine-game schedules during the 1981 and 1982 seasons, while two of 10 teams featured nine-game schedules from 1971-72 and 1977-80.
Draft Day: Denzel Ward