Many around the country were waiting for No. 4 Ohio State to prove itself against a legitimate team after rolling through four easy nonconference matchups to open the year.
After dispatching No. 23 Wisconsin 31-24 in Columbus Saturday night, one thing became definitively clear: Ohio State is a worthy contender in the BCS title race.
The Buckeyes (5-0) extended the nation’s longest winning streak to 17 with the victory. Defeating the Badgers (3-2) also gave Ohio State the inside track to claim the Leaders Division.
The victory also gave the Buckeyes’ reputation a huge boost, as they now have a quality win on their resume.
Wisconsin came into the ‘Shoe averaging 350 rushing yards per game. Badgers running back Melvin Gordon was leading the country with 624 rushing yards and an unbelievable average of 11.8 yards per carry.
The Buckeyes held Wisconsin to just 104 yards on the ground, and Gordon, who has touchdown runs of 65, 70 and 80 yards already this year, had a long of just 16 against the Buckeyes on his way to a season-low 75 yards and no touchdowns.
The Badgers ended up throwing the ball a lot more than anticipated, but Ohio State defensive end Adolphus Washington thinks that the Buckeyes played a big part in that, according to the team’s official website.
“I think a lot of that had to do with us,” Washington said. “We prepared this week to stop the run and we did. They had to adjust and made the decision to throw the ball more.”
Ohio State was also…