Ohio State pulled away for a 38-7 win against Army at Ohio Stadium on Saturday.
Here’s how it happened.
Ohio State-Army live updates, score
Ohio State 38, Army 7 (Final): That’ll do it from Ohio Stadium where the Buckeyes outclassed the Black Knights to pull away for a comfortable win. Solid second half from the Buckeyes.
Ohio State 38, Army 7 (Q4, 7:01): Barrett just passed Brees, an amazing achievement for him. This one is all done.
Ohio State 31, Army 7 (Q4, 15:00): This one feels like it’s in hand for the Buckeyes. Army can’t pass, and their scoring drives take half a quarter.
Ohio State 31, Army 7 (Q3, 5:12): J.T. Barrett just tied Drew Brees’ record for career touchdowns responsible for with 106.
Ohio State 24, Army 7 (Q3, 8:23): The J.K. Dobbins show is now playing at Ohio Stadium. The freshman has 137 yards and two touchdowns and looks as good as he ever has. Tremendous game from him so far.
Ohio State 17, Army 7 (Q3, 10:15): The Army clock-churning machine is in full effect to start the second half. At this point it’s fair to wonder how many more chances the Buckeyes offense will even have to pile on points, let alone work through its issues.
Ohio State 17, Army 7 (Halftime): For all the good the Buckeyes have accomplished in the first half, it’s still a 10-point game. That’s obviously not the result they want after a quick start that gave them a 14-point lead.
Ohio State 14, Army 7 (Q2, 6:26): Ohio State got exactly what it deserved for punting. Army went on an 18-play, 99-yard scoring drive and held the ball for more than half the second quarter. (And, for good measure, the Black Knights converted a fourth-down attempt in their own territory to keep it going.) It’s weird to see Ohio State be so conservative, but it’s become more common since late in the 2015 season.
Ohio State 14, Army 0 (Q1, 0:00): It feels like a mistake for the Buckeyes to punt from the opposing 34 late in the first quarter. Yes it was fourth-and-7 but these are the type of situations that come up in big games and getting some practice couldn’t hurt. And thanks to a missed tackle by Jerome Baker, Army quickly erased the 33 yards of field position the Buckeyes gained from Drue Chrisman’s punt. Nothing about that sequence was good.
Ohio State 14, Army 0 (Q1, 4:06): One other thing of note: J.T. Barrett looks tremendous so far, but his only miss in the 9 of 10 passing stat line is a deep ball he overthrew by five yards. Ohio State would be well served to give him a few more cracks at that to see where he’s at in that aspect of his game.
Ohio State 14, Army 0 (Q1, 4:11): The frustrating part about watching Ohio State rip apart Army’s defense is that it’s unclear how well this offense would fare against a defense with elite athletes like Penn State or Michigan. It would have been nice to see this against Oklahoma, but there’s no denying the Buckeyes look sharp so far.
Ohio State 7, Army 0 (Q1, 8:50): You can really see the value of the Ohio State defensive line on the first drive. They’re getting great penetration and forcing Army to make some quick decisions in terms of pitching or keeping the ball.
Ohio State 7, Army 0 (Q1, 12:23): Have the Buckeyes gone and fixed their offense? The first drive was a thing of beauty, with more tempo and some RPOs for J.T. Barrett. That’s more like what fans have been expecting from the Buckeyes since the arrival of Kevin Wilson.
4:07 p.m.: Backup offensive guard Matthew Burrell is not dressed out today.
Ohio State offensive lineman Matt Burrell has a boot on his left foot and isn't suited up to play today. pic.twitter.com/1mYyTXwH5G
— Colin Hass-Hill (@chasshill) September 16, 2017
3:40 p.m.: Kickoff time has been updated to 4:40 p.m. ET.
2:03 p.m.: The Ohio State marching band is going with a New York theme for its halftime show against Army.
It'll be a New York themed halftime show today for Ohio State's marching band pic.twitter.com/v5IIIa1M5H
— Ryan Ginn (@rmginn) September 16, 2017
Ohio State-Army game time, details
Time: 4:40 p.m. ET
Date: Saturday, Sept. 16
Location: Ohio Stadium, Columbus, Ohio
Weather: Mostly sunny with little to no wind. It’s expected to be 81 degrees at kickoff.
The line: Ohio State is a 30-point favorite.
Over/under: 53 points
Ohio State-Army, 3 keys to the game
1. Assignment football
The quickest way to get exposed as a defense with assignment problems is to play a service academy. The unique style of offense used by teams like Army forces defenses to play fundamental, assignment-based football. Any mistakes will be exposed, likely for big gains. As Michigan showed in 2013, successful misdirection can keep lesser teams hanging around better opponents. But one need not look that far back for an example. The play fakes used by Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield gave the Ohio State linebackers fits last game, leading to big gains over the middle. If defenders are too aggressive against a team like this, it could lead to a frustrating afternoon.
2. Time of possession
Army is going to try to bleed the clock dry and limit the amount of possessions the Ohio State offense will have over the course of the game. The Buckeyes not only want to win but also want to give themselves as many chances as possible to fix their flagging offense. In order to do that, the defense needs to find a way to get off the field. If Army is able to keep the Ohio State defense on the field, it could turn this into an ugly game that frustrates a team looking for a blowout.
3. Big plays
Army’s only chance to stay in this game is to break off occasional big plays on offense, because the Buckeyes run defense is too good to give up 3-4 yards at a time over 80 yards. Likewise, Ohio State’s best chance to turn this into a laugher instead of a nervy second-half contest is to hit some home runs on offense. You can imagine the fan frustration if Buckeyes are going three-and-out in a game where the Knights are holding the ball for huge chunks of time. Whichever team is able to rip off the most big gains is likely to determine just how close the final score is.