Ohio State Football 2011
Buckeyes Hand the Badgers Another Heartbreaking Loss
Just seven days ago, the Wisconsin Badgers had their unbeaten season and national title aspirations shattered when the Michigan State Spartans converted on a Hail Mary pass as time expired for a thrilling 37-31 victory.
On Saturday, the Ohio State Buckeyes handed the Badgers a 33-29 defeat on yet another heartbreaking, miracle pass in the game's final moments.
With 20 seconds remaining and the Buckeyes trailing 29-26 looking to get into field goal position to send the game into overtime, freshman QB Braxton Miller avoided pressure and scrambled out to his right. Keeping his eyes down field, Miller threw a 40-yard rainbow pass prior to going out of bounds.
The ball seemed to float up in the air for an eternity, but when it finally came down, it landed perfectly in the arms of Devin Smith standing in the middle of the end zone, narrowly escaping two Badger defenders.
Despite the crowd of 105,511 going crazy, the game was still not over.
The Badgers drove to the Ohio State 45 thanks to an extra play after time elapsed due to a defensive facemask call. Then, linebacker Andrew Sweat hit quarterback Russell Wilson from behind as he was throwing to end the game.
Miller had a great game as he ran for 99 yards on 19 carries and scored twice, in addition to completing 7-of-12 passes for 89 yards and a score.
OSU also got another solid performance from running back Dan Herron, whom in his second game back from two separate suspensions for accepting improper benefits, rushed for 160 yards on 33 carries.
The Buckeyes defense put in another workman-like performance, holding down a Badgers offense which came in averaging 47.4 points and 512 yards in check for most of the game.
Prior to Miller's last second heroics, the final five minutes of the game was a heavy-weight fight with each team answering the other team's blows.
With 4:39 remaining, Miller kept the ball on third-and-2 and raced through a big hole on the left side, going 44 yards untouched to give the Buckeyes a 26-14 lead.
The Badgers answered with a quick score just 44 seconds later as Wilson found Jared Abbrederis for a 17-yard score to cut it to 26-21 with 3:48 left.
Wisconsin kicked deep and then held the Buckeyes on three runs, forcing a punt.
It took just four plays to cover the 68 yards, with Wilson again finding Abbrederis all alone down the left sideline for a 49-yard score with 1:18 to go. The Badgers converted on a two-point conversion to make the score 29-26, setting the stage for Miller's miracle pass.
With the victory, Ohio State improves their record to 5-3 (2-2 Big Ten) while Wisconsin drops to 7-3 (3-2 Big Ten).
Having defeated back-to-back ranked opponents, OSU will look to keep their momentum in the conference rolling as they travel to Indiana to take on the Hoosiers next weekend.
> Find more Big Ten football news online at Big Ten Fans!