Ohio State defeats Michigan State, claims top spot in division

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – No. 13 Ohio State moved the ball with ease against the twelfth-ranked Spartans en route to a 48-3 victory at the Horseshoe. The Buckeyes now sit alone in the Big Ten East with a conference record of 6-1 and control its own destiny, wins against Illinois and Michigan secures a spot in the Big Ten Championship game for the Buckeyes.

It is the most lopsided loss in head coach Mark Dantonio’s 11 seasons, passing the Spartans’ 49-7 loss to Alabama in the 2011 Capital One Bowl.

Something happened to us today too, turnovers, not being able to run the ball, not being able to stop the run,” Dantonio said. 

MSU quarterback Brian Lewerke completed 18 passes out of 36 attempts for 131 yards and two interceptions.

“Well, I don’t think we threw the ball effectively. Last week he was on top of it, this week not so much,” Dantonio said. 

On the ground, Lewerke ran the ball 10 times for two yards. However, as a team, the Spartans only ran the ball for 64 yards and had 195 yards of total offense.

“You gotta play better, step up to the stage when there is a chance to go to the Big Ten Championship,” Lewerke said. “We gotta step up and play better than what we did even if this is a very good team, but we have to step up and play like we have been the past couple weeks.” 

The Buckeyes scored touchdowns on five of their first six possessions, punting the other time.

Coming into the game, one of the strengths of the Spartans was on defense and particularly stopping the run. However, they gave up 335 yards on the ground to the Buckeyes.

Running backs Mike Weber and J.K. Dobbins had 162 yards and 124 yards respectably, quarterback J.T. Barrett added 55 yards. Between all three players, they combined for four rushing touchdowns on the day.

“Frustrating, we’ve been doing such a great job stopping the run and then they’re getting out and it is just straight sprints,” MSU safety Khari Willis said.  

The Spartans are now 7-3 overall and 5-2 in conference play, they host Maryland on Saturday with a 4:00 p.m. kickoff on FOX.

“Obviously there is still some work left with a bowl game, so we are still ready for the rest of the season,” Lewerke said.