3 takeaways from Ohio State's dominant Week 11 win over Michigan State
Ohio State is coming out of Week 11 after a dramatic and resounding win over Michigan State, beating the Spartans by a final score of 38-3. The Buckeyes scored just 3 points after halftime, but the team had already pulled its foot off the gas with the starters coming out of the game early.
Heading into halftime, head coach Ryan Day said the team is focused on playing its best football moving forward, and it sure looked like Ohio State was clicking on all cylinders. The Buckeyes scored on their first three drives of the game and 5 of the 6 drives in the first half before cruising to the big win.
Here are the key takeaways from that game:
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Marvin Harrison Jr. continues electric season
Harrison is the rare wide receiver who happens to be compiling a body of work that could land a trip to the Heisman Trophy ceremony in New York. Even in his quiet performance against Rutgers, Harrison delivered 2 touchdowns, but he wasted no time making an impact in Week 11.
This time, Harrison hit the ground running — literally — on the first drive of the game. Traditionally utilized in the passing attack, the wide receiver delivered his first-ever rushing touchdown to open the game.
He went on to score 3 total touchdowns on Ohio State’s first 3 drives of the game. By the time he was pulled from the game, Harrison had racked up 7 catches for 149 yards and 3 total touchdowns.
Harrison now has 7 games with at least 100 receiving yards this season and 4 games with at least 145 receiving yards. He has 6 straight games with a touchdown and now has 3 straight games with multiple touchdowns.
Winning the Heisman as a WR takes a special season, and a bit of luck, but Harrison has a shot to put everything together.
Ohio State defense weathers absence of key starters
When the availability report for Week 11 came out, Ohio State revealed the defense would be without Tommy Eichenberg, Lathan Ransom and Josh Proctor. Those are all starting pieces of the defense, and it will be imperative to get everyone healthy for The Game against Michigan.
The good news is that the absences did not impact the Buckeyes Saturday night. Cody Simon — one of the replacements stepping in for Eichenberg — stepped up and tied for the team lead with 5 total tackles. Malik Hartford also saw extended action in the defensive backfield and delivered 4 solo stops in the win.
At the end of the day, Michigan State did not have the firepower to make this one interesting, but it’s always important to see the depth at play late in the season.
It’s almost time…
With Ohio State moving to 10-0, it is just about time to focus on “TTUN.” Yes, a game against Minnesota looms for the Buckeyes in Week 12. Ryan Day will have his team focused, but there’s no denying the anticipation can begin to build for The Game.
Ohio State will have to head to Ann Arbor for that matchup, but the Buckeyes have looked exactly how they are supposed to through the first 10 games of the season. Now, it’s time for Ryan Day to put the finishing touches on the regular season, and that will include getting the Michigan monkey off his back this year.