#4 Ohio State 14 Michigan 9 (2002)

The win capped off an unbelievable 13-0 regular season and sent the Buckeyes to the National Championship game.  Maurice Hall scored on an option with less than 5:00 minutes remaining in the game and Will Allen picked off Michigan quarterback John Navarre at the goal line as time expired.  True freshman Maurice Clarett ran for 119 yards with a score and set up Ohio State's winning TD with a 26 yard reception that moved the ball to the 6 yard line.  The win made it two in a row over Michigan for Coach Jim Tressel, marking the first time a Buckeye coach had won his first two against Michigan since 1935.  Like any great game, it came right down to the last play of the game. Click for Complete Game Summary

Coach: Jim Tressel 
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This page was last updated: October 19, 2015
Buckeye 50 Yard Line's Biggest Wins in the Post Woody Era
By Brent Baver
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#3 Ohio State 42  Michigan 39
(2006 season, #1 vs #2)

One day after the passing of Coach Schembechler, the Buckeyes and Wolverines played their greatest game ever.  For the first time in the 103 game rivalry, they were facing each other as the #1 and #2 teams in the country.  Although Ohio State was seemingly in control the entire game, Michigan kept trying to find the answers.  It wasn't until Troy Smith hit Brian Robiskie late in the 4th quarter that the outcome of the game was decided.  It was a well balanced game for the Buckeyes and should have served as a spring board to an undefeated season and National Championship.  But they were soundly defeated in the Championship game and did not get to finish the season with the results they deserved.

Coach: Jim Tressel
#5 Ohio State 18 Michigan 15 (1979)

It was another one of those emotional moments when the players carried Earle off the field on their shoulders, while Earle pumped his arm up in the air repeatedly with his finger up to signify #1. Art Schlichter's TD pass in the third quarter ended a 3 1/2 game TD drought against Michigan.  Jim Laughlin came through unblocked to block a punt in the middle of the fourth quarter and Todd Bell scooped it up and ran it in for the game winning touchdown.  This completed our first undefeated regular season in the post-Woody era, sending Ohio State to the Rose Bowl with a # 1 ranking.  Unfortunately they were not able to finish the deal as USC prevailed in Pasadena.

Coach: Earle Bruce
#1 Ohio State 31  Miami 24  2 OT's (2003 Fiesta Bowl)
National Championship

This may have been the greatest college football game ever played.  It capped an inconceivable 14-0 National Championship season.  The national media gave the Buckeyes little or no chance saying that the Hurricanes, who had who 34 consecutive games, who roll over Ohio State.  The Buckeye defense set the tone on their first play, sacking Miami QB Ken Dorsey.  Miami tied the game with a field goal at the end of regulation and led by seven in the first overtime.  Craig Krenzel completed a pass to Michael Jenkins on 4th and 13, leading to a Buckeye score that pushed it into double overtime.  Maurice Clarett scored in the second overtime and the Buckeye defense then held Miami giving the Buckeyes their first National Title in 34 years.  Click for Complete Game Summary

Coach: Jim Tressel
#2 Ohio State 20 Arizona State 17
(1997 Rose Bowl)

Definitely one of the greatest football game I've ever watched.  My eyes watered when Coop made the comment, "That victory....was for our great fans!"  Germaine, Boston, Stanley, Springs, Katzenmoyer, and Bellisari.  I'll remember these guys' performances forever.  It was an absolute sick feeling when Jake Plummer scored the go-ahead touchdown with under two minutes to go, but David Boston's TD to win it was probably the single greatest moment in the last 20 years of Ohio State football.  And it certainly made a case for the Buckeyes to be the National Champions, unfortunately the pollsters were more impressed with Florida's win in their re-match with Florida State in the Orange Bowl. Click for Complete Game Summary 

Coach: John Cooper
#6 Ohio State 22 Iowa 13 (1985)

Ohio State's first win over a #1 ranked team in the post-Woody era.  The game was played in a steady downpour, but most fans stayed for it all.  The Buckeyes pass defense was criticized by a Columbus Citizen-Journal writer in that morning's paper.  The columnist talked about how Heisman hopeful Chuck Long would eat the OSU pass defense for lunch.  This column and a pre-game speech by injured Keith Byars served as huge motivating factors in the Buckeyes' upset of the Hawkeyes.  The Buckeye defenders cost Long the Heisman that day as they picked him off four times.  One of the goal posts from that game sat inside Papa Joe's bar until the place burned down in the mid-90's.

Coach: Earle Bruce
#7 Ohio State 45 Illinois 38 (1984)

It was a classic shoot-out.  Ohio State came back from a 24-0 deficit.  Keith Byars rushed for 274 yards, breaking Archie Griffin's single game rushing record. Byars also had a 67 yard TD run where he ran the majority of the way without one of his shoes.  His TD in the closing minutes completed the comeback in what may have been the most exciting Ohio State game of the decade.  The Buckeyes went on to win the Big Ten outright and played USC in the Rose Bowl.  Click for Complete Game Summary

Coach: Earle Bruce
#8 Ohio State 21 Michigan 6 (1984)

Little did the Buckeyes know that they would not win another game that would send them to a Rose Bowl in the next eleven years.  This was Ohio State's best team of the 80's.  The Buckeye's starting units were filled with guys that went on to play in the NFL, including Jim Lachey, Cris Carter, Chris Spielman, Pepper Johnson, Keith Byars, Kirk Lowdermilk, and Tom Tupa.  Byars scored all three of Ohio State's touchdowns that day and Mike Lanese had one of the best catches in Ohio State history, catching a ball by his fingertips on a pass that was thrown behind him.

Coach: Earle Bruce
#9 Ohio State 23 Michigan 20 (1987)

The Buckeye players came out wearing Earle headbands to support their lame duck coach.  Earle had been told earlier in the week that the Michigan game would be his last and that he was out.  I must admit I was not a big Earle Bruce supporter but the commitment by the players that afternoon was beautiful.  Carlos Snow took a dump pass down the sidelines for a key touchdown and the underdog Buckeyes won one for Earle.  The fans stormed the field on this cold November day, but it was Scarlet and Gray that was enjoying the celebration.  Click for  Complete Game Summary

Coach: Earle Bruce
#10 Ohio State 31 Michigan 16 (1998)

This game had as much emotion surrounding it as any game I can remember.  The Buckeye's National Title hopes were all but ruined a few weeks before that and another loss to an underdog Michigan team could have meant suicide for some of us.  The team came out through "Tunnel of Pride" with as much desire as I've ever seen.  The previous three games with Michigan were the worst losses an Ohio State fan could ever go through. Michael Wiley set the stage early with a 50+ yard TD run and Ohio State never looked back.

Coach: John Cooper
#11 Ohio State 45 Notre Dame 26 (1995)

The first time the Irish had visited the 'Shoe since "the game of the century" in 1935.  The Ohio State campus was absolutely nuts.  The word was, there were approximately 500,000 people within a 1/2 mile radius of the stadium.  It may have been the hardest ticket to get in the history of the program.  Notre Dame dominated early and went into intermission with the lead, but Ohio State took over in the second half.  Terry Glenn put the crowd in hysterics when he caught a short pass between two Notre Dame defenders and outraced them to the goal line for a 80 yard TD.  It was as one of the craziest atmospheres I've ever seen at the 'Shoe.

Coach: John Cooper  
#12 Ohio State 36 LSU 33 (1988)

Probably the greatest "late" comeback of the post-Woody era, this was one of the bright spots in Coach Cooper's frist season.  LSU seemed to have the game about rapped up with six minutes to go when they had the ball and led by more than one score, but Ohio State scored twice in the closing minutes to claim the victory.  Bobby Olive caught the game winner on a sliding catch in the end zone to finish off an incredible comeback.  Click for Complete Game Summary

Coach: John Cooper
Link to Fiesta Bowl Game