Ohio State Football: Top Five Games Of The Urban Meyer Era

Ohio State Football: Top Five Games Of The Urban Meyer Era

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Ohio State Football: Top Five Games Of The Urban Meyer Era


Ohio State has certainly enjoyed success under the leadership of Urban Meyer. In this post, we’ll attempt to narrow the top five games of the Urban era.


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Ohio State Football: Top Five Games Of The Urban Meyer Era

With 73 wins in six short years to choose from, the body of work is there for Urban Meyer. There haven’t been too many lows with only eight losses on his OSU record.

Many of the 73 wins have come by way of blow out, but there have been some thrillers and instant classics as well. Let’s take a look at what can be considered to be the top five games under Urban Meyer.

December 6, 2014 – Ohio State 59 Wisconsin 0

Ohio State faced a must win game if they hoped to have a chance to get into the inaugural College Football Playoff. Not only would it need to win, but it would need to win convincingly with a third string quarterback.

The Buckeyes had been rolling after an early season loss to Virginia Tech in Ohio Stadium. Then J.T. Barrett broke his leg midway through the Michigan game. Next man up… Cardale Jones.

Yep, 12-gauge.

With Jones having limited playing time in the regular season and being most famous for an ill-advised tweet, most did not give OSU much of a chance against the No. 13 ranked Badgers.

Ohio State came out firing on all cylinders and had a 38 point lead by halftime. The Bucks never looked back and strolled to a dominating victory, ultimately vaulting them into the CFP.

The defense was almost flawless picking off three passes and holding Heisman hopeful Melvin Gordon to just 76 yards. Cardale Jones threw for 257 yards and three touchdowns, garnering him the game MVP honors.

September 17, 2016 – Ohio State 45 Oklahoma 24

A year after losing a ton of talent to the NFL including first rounders Ezekiel Elliott, Joey Bosa, Eli Apple, Taylor Decker, and Darron Lee, no one really knew what to expect from the new look Buckeyes.

Ohio State had a huge early season test going into Norman for a nationally televised night game. Oklahoma was loaded with offensive talent that boasted a two headed running back tandem of Joe Mixon and Samaje Perine, and Heisman hopeful Baker Mayfield.

However, the Sooners would never get any closer than seven points, as the defense hounded Mayfield all night and bottled up the running game. Meanwhile the OSU offense seemed to march at will.

Noah Brown ended up with four touchdowns, none of which was bigger than his acrobatic bear hug of a catch around an OU defender.

October 28, 2017 – Ohio State 39 Penn State 38

No. 2 Penn State walked into Ohio Stadium with high expectations. The Nittany Lions had knocked the Buckeyes off the Big Ten perch a year earlier and were looking to replace OSU as the top dog with a win at The ‘Shoe.

Things could not have started better for PSU as running back SaQuon Barkley ran the opening kick back for a touchdown. A few plays later Penn State would force a fumble and eventually get in the end zone for an early 14-0 lead.

But Ohio State never gave in. It kept clawing, staying within striking distance, with the game going back and forth. OSU would close the gap, and Penn State would extend the lead, getting up by as much as fifteen in the 4th quarter.

Then J.T. Barrett took over. After a Denzel Ward blocked punt put the Bucks in great field position, Barrett started operating with the precision of a surgeon. J.T. would connect on 13 passes in a row and Ohio State would take its first lead of the game with less than two minutes to play.

The defense would hold and OSU would complete one of the biggest comebacks in Urban’s career.

November 26, 2016 – Ohio State 30 Michigan 27 (2OT)

Just like the good ‘ol days, No. 2 Ohio State vs. No 3 Michigan.

This one was so good it couldn’t be decided in just four quarters, and would eventually go to a second overtime before Curtis Samuel ran the Buckeyes into the victory column.

The game was filled with controversy. Michigan led much of the game with Ohio State playing well beneath its capabilities. The turning point came when Wolverine head coach Jim Harbaugh got an unsportsmanlike penalty for showing his disdain over an offside call that went against his team.

Later in overtime, J.T. Barrett was awarded a first down that Harbaugh felt was a poor spot. Video evidence would show that Barrett did indeed reach the line of gain (that is, unless you have a Hail To The Victors ring tone on your cell) and Ohio State would march in for the go ahead score.

Harbaugh would say in his press conference that he was “bitterly disappointed” with the officiating. Ohio State fans had a field day with his reaction and the memes were relentless.

January 1, 2015 – Ohio State 42 Alabama 35

Ohio State had made its case and got into the first ever College Football Playoffs as the No. 4 seed. Their reward? A date against the mighty Alabama Crimson Tide.

Alabama would jump out to an 21-6 lead early in the 2nd quarter, but the Buckeyes never swayed. Taking the Tide’s best punch to the mouth, OSU kept swinging.

Ohio State kept hope alive with a trick play, when Evan Spencer ran an end-around and threw a strike to Michael Thomas in the end zone just before the half. The momentum was turning in the Bucks favor.

Ohio State took the lead with a Cardale Jones bomb to Devin Smith early in the 3rd quarter and would never look back. The game was capped with three minutes left to play when Ezekiel Elliott ran “85 yards through the heart of the south” to give OSU a 40-28 lead.

The Buckeyes would pull off the improbable, dethroning the reigning SEC champion and going on to beat Oregon the following week for the first ever College Football Playoff National Championship. Elliott ended the game with 230 yards rushing and 2 touchdowns, earning offensive MVP honors.

There you have it. The top five games of the Urban Meyer era at Ohio State. Think a different game belongs on the list? Let me know your thoughts on Twitter.

 

Contact/Follow @BuckeyeWire for continuing coverage of Ohio State football and basketball.

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