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Buckeyes trounce Wolverines to share sixth straight Big Ten title

Nov 28, 2010 - 2:07 AM Columbus, OH (Sports Network) - Terrelle Pryor threw two touchdown passes in an explosive second quarter, as eighth-ranked Ohio State clinched a share of the Big Ten championship with a 37-7 victory over bitter rival Michigan.

The Buckeyes (11-1, 7-1 Big Ten) matched the record of six straight conference titles won by Ohio State from 1972-77.

Heading into Saturday, the Buckeyes were tied with Michigan State and Wisconsin in the conference standings. The Spartans notched a road win against Penn State, while the Badgers routed Northwestern. By virtue of the conference tiebreaker system, the highest-ranked team among Ohio State, Michigan State and the Badgers in Sunday's BCS rankings will head to the Rose Bowl as the Big Ten champion representative.

"I'm proud of these guys. We fought all day long," Ohio State head coach Jim Tressel said. "Our kids prepared very hard and played hard and they deserve everything that comes to them."

Pryor was 18-of-27 passing for 220 yards and added 49 yards on the ground.

Dan Herron had 175 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries for Ohio State, which has won seven straight over Michigan.

Denard Robinson connected on 8-of-18 passes for just 87 yards and carried the ball 18 times for 105 yards for the Wolverines (7-5, 3-5). Robinson was limited in the second half because of a left hand injury.

"He dislocated a couple of fingers on his left hand," Michigan head coach Rich Rodriguez said of his star quarterback. "He likes to grip the ball with his left hand, and he just couldn't get feeling back into it."

After turning the ball over on downs in enemy territory on their first possession of the game, Robinson took the Wolverines to the Ohio State 26- yard-line, where on third down he ran 17 yards before fumbling.

Ohio State's Nathan Williams recovered the ball at his own nine, and the Buckeyes capitalized on the turnover as Devin Barclay made a 33-yard field goal eight seconds into the second quarter. The key play of the drive was Pryor's 39-yard completion to Sanzenbacher to the Michigan 47 on third down. Ohio State had gone three-and-out on each of its first two possessions.

The Buckeyes got the ball back at the Michigan 35 following a short punt from Seth Broekhuizen. Sanzenbacher caught a seven-yard TD pass to give Ohio State a 10-0 lead five plays later.

Michael Shaw's one-yard touchdown run capped an 11-play drive and put the Wolverines on the board with 8:02 remaining in the frame, but Jordan Hall returned the ensuing kickoff 85 yards to make it 17-7 in favor of the home team.

DeVier Posey caught a 33-yard TD pass from Pryor to extend Ohio State's advantage to 24-7. The Buckeyes were threatening again following a Michigan fumble, but Jordan Kovacs picked off Pryor near the goal line on the final play of the quarter, keeping the Wolverines' halftime deficit at 17 points.

Tate Forcier, playing in place of Robinson -- who got hurt in the second quarter -- was intercepted by OSU's Travis Howard on the first play of the second half.

The Buckeyes converted the turnover into a Herron 32-yard TD run.

Robinson returned behind center on Michigan's next series, but the Wolverines wound up punting the ball.

Herron rumbled 98 yards to the end zone on the first play of the subsequent drive, but a holding penalty negated the touchdown. Barclay eventually kicked a 36-yard field goal to put Ohio State up 34-7.

A 23-yard Barclay field goal capped the scoring with 68 seconds left in the third quarter.

Game Notes

Posey caught five passes for 82 yards...Darryl Stonum had 81 yards on seven receptions for Michigan...Forcier completed 8-of-15 throws for 82 yards...The Wolverines have lost five in a row at Ohio Stadium. Michigan's last victory in Columbus came in 2000...Saturday was the 107th meeting between Ohio State and Michigan. The Wolverines still lead the all-time series 57-44-6.