Thanks to an impressive late fourth quarter defense, the No. 4 Ohio State Buckeyes held on for the 40-30 road victory over the No. 16 Northwestern Wildcats on Saturday night.
Carlos Hyde was the star of the game, rushing for three second half touchdowns and 168 total yards in the victory. The Buckeyes defense was not pretty, considering the loss of captain and senior safety Christian Bryant, but managed to come up with the a key fourth down stop and late turnover.
At the end of the game, the Buckeyes defense forced a final turnover and rescued the ball in the endzone, leading to a final touchdown. That score switched away the Vegas line, which was set at -7 for the Buckeyes. It was the 18th straight victory in Urban Meyer’s Columbus career.
Ohio State (6-0) managed to win their second straight Big Ten game by a narrow margin. For the Wildcats (4-1), it was yet another heart-breaking late defeat, reminding head coach Pat Fitzgerald of the team’s three late losses back in 2012.
Northwestern’s do-it-all quarterback and wildcat extraordinaire Kain Colter finished 11-for-11 passing with a rushing touchdown and passing touchdown. But the home team ran for only 2.2 yards per carry compared to 5.2 for the Buckeyes.
The crowd figured to be at least half OSU fans at Ryan Field in Evanston. It was labeled as one of the biggest home games in Northwestern’s football history with the ESPN Gameday crew at the stadium.
Ohio State has a bye next week, then takes on Iowa (4-2) at 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 19, at Ohio Stadium.
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