Ohio State Football 2012
Urban Meyer Era Begins with a Bang
All the anticipation and hype surrounding Urban Meyer's first game as the Ohio State head football coach were met... for one game at least.
An offense which struggled to put up points merely a season ago, all-of-a-sudden had new life and was explosion, scorching the visiting Miami RedHawks, 56-10 in front of a packed house in Columbus.
It was clear to see the impact Meyer has made already on sophomore quarterback Braxton Miller whom was the catalyst behind the Buckeyes offense.
Miller rushed for 161 yards, a record for an Ohio State quarterback, running for one touchdown and throwing for an additional 207 yards and two scores.
Although Miller was the catalyst, it was a catch made by wide receiver Devin Smith that lit the fuse for the Buckeyes.
Taking over at their own 17 after a punt, the Buckeyes needed just four plays to cover the distance and take the lead for good. Miller used a play-action fake to freeze the defense before hitting Corey Brown for a 38-yard gain to the Miami 23. Miller then threw high and hard into the right corner of the end zone where Smith leaped in front of defender Dayonne Nunley, snagged the ball with his right hand and pulled it in as he crashed to the ground.
"It looked like it was going out of bounds. I just stuck my hand up there and caught it," Smith said. "When we lined up, Braxton looked at me and shook his head like, `Let's go!' And then we made the play."
"That was a moment that ignited the stadium," Meyer said. "The stadium got quiet, our sideline got quiet -- we were waiting for a play to happen. And he went up and made a play."
With the crowd and team ignited, Miller took over from there.
He stutter-stepped a defender for a 65-yard score just 17 seconds into the second half.
Moments after Miller's long run, a high snap tipped off the fingertips of Miami punter Zac Murphy, with Bradley Roby winning a scrum in the end zone for the touchdown and a 35-3 lead.
That wasn't the end of the Buckeyes' big performers. Travis Howard had two interceptions and Carlos Hyde scored on 4- and 8-yard runs for Ohio State. Miller and Hyde, who had 82 yards on 17 carries, helped the Buckeyes roll up 294 yards on the ground and 244 through the air.
As electric as the offense was, the defense put in a stereotypical OSU performance, holding the RedHawks to negative one yards rushing.
With both sides of the ball off to a great start in the Urban Meyer era, the Buckeyes will look to keep that momentum rolling as they host the University of Central Florida Knights on Saturday.
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