Ohio State destroyed Michigan State on Saturday, beating the Spartans 48-3 in a huge divisional matchup.
Find the score, live updates and analysis from the game below.
Ohio State-Michigan State football score, live updates
Ohio State 48, Michigan State 3 (Final): That’ll do it here from Columbus.
Ohio State 48, Michigan State 3 (Q4, 10:44): It’ll be a parade of backups from this point forward for the Buckeyes. Dwayne Haskins has entered the game, and plenty of other underclassmen have too.
Ohio State 48, Michigan State 3 (Q3, 0:00): At this point, it’s all about playing out the string — for both teams. It’s a little surprising to see J.T. Barrett still in the game, though.
Ohio State 42, Michigan State 3 (Q3, 14:06): And the Buckeyes begin the first half with a huge touchdown to Binjimen Victor, who humiliated a defensive back en route to scoring.
Ohio State 35, Michigan State 3 (Half): It’s weird to watch Mark Dantonio giving up, but that’s what just happened. Michigan State ended the first half by kicking a short field goal instead of taking a shot at the end zone.
Ohio State 35, Michigan State 0 (Q2, 6:10): Mike Weber just went 82 yards for a touchdown. This is a rout. It’s reminiscent of the Buckeyes’ huge win against Michigan in 2015 after blowing it against Michigan State the week before.
Ohio State 21, Michigan State 0 (Q2, 11:35): It’s all Buckeyes today, folks. The offense is firing on all cylinders, and the Spartans continue to make bizarre decisions on offense.
Ohio State 14, Michigan State 0 (Q1, 0:17): That’s about as good as a first quarter can get for the Buckeyes. Fourteen of 20 offensive plays in the first quarter were runs, and Dobbins and Weber are justifying those calls.
Ohio State 7, Michigan State 0 (Q1, 4:12): Michigan State keeps throwing at Denzel Ward, for reasons that defy explanation. It’s not working. The Spartans should probably try something else.
Ohio State 7, Michigan State 0 (Q1, 8:14): Well that’s more like it for the Buckeyes. J.K. Dobbins ripped off a couple big carries and Mike Weber finished it off with a 47-yard touchdown run up the middle. The defense still has some work to do but the Buckeyes are looking better overall than last week.
Ohio State-Michigan State pregame updates
12:03 p.m.: Buckeyes game captains: Barrett, Campbell, Hubbard, Worley
11:15 a.m.: It looks like the Buckeyes will be without starting linebackers Jerome Baker and Dante Booker today.
Ohio State-Michigan State football preview, picks
The line: Ohio State -17, per MyBookie
Over/under: 53.5 points
Ohio State-Michigan State football preview, picks
Thanks to Ohio State’s shocking loss to Iowa combined with Michigan State’s upset of Penn State, this game now has Big Ten East title implications. Whichever team wins this game can claim the division by winning out. Conversely, the loser will effectively be eliminated from contention. Those stakes make it the latest in a long line of big games between the two teams. And while neither program approaches it as such, it has the feel of a rivalry game.
How will this game unfold? Here are three keys that will help determine the outcome of this matchup:
1. How they respond
Ohio State and Michigan State will enter this game coming off very different experiences from the previous week. The Buckeyes suffered a humiliating 31-point loss to Iowa, while the Spartans took down Penn State on a last-second field goal. Will the Spartans suffer an emotional letdown the same way the Buckeyes did after beating Penn State at home and then hitting the road against a solid opponent? Or will the win buoy their confidence? Will the Buckeyes pack it in after a loss, or channel that defeat into focus and motivation?
“It depends on the team,” Urban Meyer said Wednesday. “It depends on the leadership of the team and how the assistant coaches and the head coach handle this business. There’s a psychological advantage if a team’s got that anger. We’ll know more about our team as we continue on our journey. It depends on the team, and it depends on the leadership and the coaches.”
2. Running the ball
The Buckeyes are in an interesting place right now when it comes to their rushing offense. They have two talented running backs, dynamic freshman J.K. Dobbins and bruising sophomore Mike Weber. As a team, they rush for 5.88 yards per carry. However, the Buckeyes have essentially been a 50-50 team in terms of run-pass play calls this season instead of running 60-65 percent of the time like previous years of the Meyer era. Dobbins has gone ignored for large periods of time in each of the last two games. Against Iowa, he received only six handoffs despite averaging more than 8 yards per carry.
Will Meyer feed Dobbins and Weber against the Spartans? That’s where things get tricky. Michigan State has the No. 3 rushing defense in the country, surrendering an average of just 87 yards per game on the ground. It will be interesting to see whether the Buckeyes increase the amount of carries and whether the two running backs are up to the challenge if given the opportunity.
3. Passing attack
Which team will be able to beat the other through the air? If one team has a big day in the passing game, it could make all the difference. Michigan State quarterback Brian Lewerke has been very good lately, and the Buckeyes’ linebackers have been torched on play-action passes. And while J.T. Barrett struggled overall against Iowa, he did throw three touchdown passes. Moreover, he previously had one of the best games of his career, torching Penn State by going 33 of 39 with four touchdowns and no interceptions. It will be cold in Columbus, but there won’t be any rain or much wind. Big passing plays could help swing this result one way or the other.
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