No. 3 Buckeyes await phrase on ‘The Recreation’ with lots at stake

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — No. 3 Ohio State banked some type factors throughout its rout of Michigan State, however the subsequent step towards any sort of championship for the Buckeyes this season may very well be out of their management.

They have to wait this week for COVID-19 assessments to find out whether or not Michigan can journey to Columbus for the finale of the pandemic-delayed common season on Saturday.

With two video games already canceled, the Buckeyes (5-0) should get in a sixth sport beneath present convention guidelines to be eligible to play for a fourth consecutive Huge Ten championship. However even that is perhaps up within the air.

The Huge Ten may determine that Ohio State, even with solely 5 video games, will nonetheless characterize the East Division within the Dec. 19 title sport, at the least partially as a result of the convention would not wish to harm the Buckeyes’ probabilities of incomes a nationwide playoff berth.

Ohio State is holding on to the fourth spot within the School Soccer Playoff rankings however may use a stable win in ”The Recreation,” and a convention championship, so as to add to its resume and persuade the choice committee to maintain it in entrance of Texas A&M (7-1) and Florida (8-1) regardless of taking part in fewer video games.

It guarantees to be an fascinating week.

Ohio State has had its personal issues with the coronavirus. An outbreak in its facility led to the cancellation of the Nov. 28 sport at Illinois. Amongst these taken out of motion was coach Ryan Day, who needed to keep residence and watch the Michigan State sport on TV.

”I am hoping the worst half is behind us and we are able to look ahead,” Day mentioned Saturday.

Ohio State’s listing of unavailable gamers included 23 names earlier than the 52-12 drubbing of the Spartans (2-4). They included three beginning offensive linemen and a beginning linebacker. Three assistant coaches additionally had been out.

”I am actually stunned that I did not get it,” mentioned quarterback Justin Fields, who threw for 2 touchdowns and ran for 2 extra. ”I assume it was simply God searching for me. We had been simply glad we received the chance to play.”

Michigan (2-4) reported an elevated variety of constructive assessments final week, resulting in the cancellation of its sport at Maryland. The scale of the outbreak has not been disclosed by the varsity.

Being pressured to scrap the sport in Columbus could be a bitter finish to a disappointing season for Wolverines coach Jim Harbaugh. So would one other loss to the Buckeyes, who’ve received the rivalry sport in every of Harbaugh’s first 5 years at Michigan.

A win, after all, would make issues higher for Harbaugh, who has one yr left on his contract on the college he led as a quarterback within the mid-Eighties.

The Buckeyes beat Michigan 56-27 on the Huge Home final yr in Day’s first sport as head coach within the collection and prolonged their successful streak over the Wolverines to eight straight.

Day mentioned he was happy with how the Buckeyes moved previous the tough, unsure week to dominate Michigan State. Line of defense coach Larry Johnson was the stand-in for Day, with offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson calling the performs that produced 521 yards.

”It was tough,” mentioned working again Trey Sermon, who rushed for 112 yards and a landing, his greatest day since transferring to Ohio State from Oklahoma within the offseason. ”However (as) our coaches had been saying – it is adversity, we will face it.”

Mentioned Fields: ”This week actually introduced us collectively as a crew.”

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