Second-ranked Ohio State beat visiting Eastern Michigan, 73-20, Saturday afternoon, sending the Eagles to their 16th straight defeat.
From an offensive standpoint, the Eagles (0-4) put up some good numbers, considering the mismatch. Coming back from halftime, the broadcast crew at ESPN complimented Alex Gillett and his poise running the offense. Gillett completed 13 passes for 200 yards and two touchdowns.
The already vulnerable Eagles’ defense couldn’t put up much of a fight, 10 touchdowns and a field goal. EMU did a respectable job getting into the backfield and pressuring Heisman candidate Terrelle Pryor, but Pryor was too elusive for the Eagles to pin down (224 yards passing, with four touchdowns, and 104 yards and a TD rushing.)
The Buckeyes out-gamed Eastern, 645-248.
“Every dog has his day. I’ve had my days,” Eastern coach Ron English told the Associated Press. “I’m taking mine right now, and I’m sure there’ll be a day when I’m giving mine again. Whether it be here or somewhere else. But I promise you I’ll be back giving my butt-whuppin’s out, too.”
It didn’t take the Buckeyes (4-0) long to score. On the their first possession, Pryor ran 53 yards on a third-down play that was supposed to be a pass. When he couldn’t find an open receiver he took the ball out of the pocket and ran.
The Eagles followed the scoring drive with an attempt downfield to wide-open receiver Donald Scott; he was not able to corral the pass, and the Eagles were forced to punt.
Pryor and the Buckeyes continued their dominance, and Ohio State led 24-0 after the first quarter.
At 11:19, Donald Scott made up for the pass he dropped earlier by going over the middle and getting drilled at the 1-yard line. That play set up a 1-yard EMU touchdown run by Dwayne Priest.
Ohio State promptly responded with a 70-yard touchdown, capped off by a pass from Pryor to Dan Sanzenbacher (nine catches, 408 yards and four touchdowns.) Pryor and Sanzenbacher would hook up again on OSU very next posession.
The Eagles got the last word in the half with Gillett finding receiver Kinsman Thomas for a score, making it 38-14 at the half. Pryor and Sanzenbacher teamed twice more for scores before Pryor left the game.
Pryor proved he could catch the ball, too, when he caught a touchdown from running back Jordan Hall in an oddly timed trick play to put OSU up 52-20. Jordan Hall found the end zone on the ground the next possession on a pass from back-up quarterback Joe Bauserman, making it 59-20.
Eagles freshman quarterback Devontae Payne re-entered the game with 11 minutes remaining, after playing briefly in the first quarter. Payne finished with one completion on six attempts with 8 yards.
Ohio State left its No. 1 defense in well into the fourth quarter. Saturday was only the second time Ohio State gave up more than one touchdown.
“We didn’t come in saying, ‘Well, you know, we’re going to go after X amount of points,’” Buckeyes coach Jim Tressel told the AP.
Said Pryor to the AP: “Obviously you never come into a game expecting to do that. As an offense, we don’t come into the game planning on 73 points, either, but sometimes you’re in the right place at the right time.”
The Eagles will take on the Ohio Bobcats (1-3) at noon Saturday for homecoming.