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No. 4 Ohio State clinches Leaders Division with rout over Indiana

Nov 24, 2013 - 12:53 AM Columbus, OH ( - Braxton Miller accounted for 304 yards and four touchdowns, as No. 4 Ohio State claimed their second straight Big Ten Leaders Division crown with a 42-14 drubbing of Indiana on Saturday.

Unlike last season, though, the Buckeyes (11-0, 7-0 Big Ten) will be appearing in the Big Ten title game after establishing a new program record for consecutive wins with their 23rd straight victory. Ohio State was ineligible for the conference championship game last season due to NCAA sanctions.

"It's the longest winning streak in Ohio State history," said Buckeyes head coach Urban Meyer, who has yet to lose a game since taking over at Ohio State in 2011. "It is over and we can move on to rivalry week."

Miller completed 11-of-17 passes for 160 yards and two touchdowns with one interception while adding 144 yards and two scores on 13 carries for the Buckeyes, who will take on Legends Division champion Michigan State in the Big Ten title game on Dec. 7 after wrapping up their regular-season slate with a road test against Michigan next week.

"We are playing pretty good right now," Miller said. "Our foot is on the pedal."

Carlos Hyde rushed for 117 yards and two touchdowns on 18 totes in the win.

Nate Sudfeld struggled under center for the Hoosiers (4-7, 2-5), completing 25-of-41 passes for 224 yards and a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns. Kofi Hughes hauled in a game-high nine passes for 120 yards for Indiana, which has lost 18 straight meetings with Ohio State.

Ohio State found the end zone on its first two touches of the tilt, as Miller highlighted the team's opening series with a 41-yard scamper before Hyde capped it with a 16-yard TD run to make it 7-0 under 3 1/2 minutes in.

Following an Indiana punt, Miller converted a 3rd-and-3 with a 12-yard run down to the Indiana 37 and two plays later, the shifty signal-caller surged up the middle and bounced to the right sideline before diving into the end zone for a 37-yard touchdown that doubled OSU's lead with 8:11 left in the frame.

Miller fumbled the ball away early in the Buckeyes' next touch, but the Hoosiers came away empty after Mitch Ewald missed a 42-yard field goal on the first play of the second quarter.

Ohio State's special teams unit set up the Buckeyes' next score, as Bradley Roby blocked a punt and Ron Tanner scooped up the loose ball and returned it seven yards to the Indiana 8.

Two plays later, Miller lined up out wide to the left and Kenny Guiton took a direct snap from the shotgun before pitching to Miller, who scampered around the right end and leaped over a defender as he stretched the ball across the goal line for a 5-yard TD run that made it 21-0 with 8:36 on the clock.

After Indiana turned the ball over on downs at the OSU 31 late in the half, Miller hooked up with Jeff Heuerman for 34 yards to the Indiana 5 before Hyde surged in from there to send the Buckeyes into the break with a 28-0 cushion.

Ohio State extended the margin in the latter stages of the third when Miller capped a 6-play, 65-yard sequence with a quick shovel pass to Dontre Wilson, who scurried 24 yards into the end zone for a 35-0 lead with 4:44 left in the frame.

Indiana marched 79 yards in 13 plays on its ensuing touch to move down to the Ohio State 2, but Tre Roberson's 4th-and-goal pass was knocked down and the Hoosiers turned the ball over on downs.

Hyde carried the ball on OSU's next three plays and totaled 26 yards to give the Buckeyes some breathing room before Miller converted a 3rd-and-17 with a 25-yard toss to Heuerman.

On the next play, Miller hit Devin Smith in stride on a post route in the end zone for a 39-yard score that pushed the margin to 42-0.

Indiana finally found the end zone on its next drive, which featured three fourth-down conversions, including the final play of the series that saw Sudfeld find Shane Wynn for a 4-yard score on 4th-and-goal to make it 42-7.

Guiton fumbled the ball away on the second play of Ohio State's ensuing drive and Sudfeld hooked up with D'Angelo Roberts on a 25-yard score with just over two minutes remaining to account for the final margin.

Game Notes

Ohio State owns a 69-12-5 advantage in the all-time series, with its last loss to the Hoosiers coming in a 41-7 rout in Bloomington back in 1988 ... The Buckeyes have outscored their opponents 83-0 in the first quarter over their last four games ... Ohio State's 23 straight wins broke the old mark of 22 set by the teams from 1967-69 ... Indiana compiled 24 first downs, compared to 22 for OSU ... Ohio State racked up 311 yards on the ground while holding the Hoosiers to 122 rushing yards ... Indiana finished 7-of-21 on third-down efficiency and 5-of-8 on fourth-down conversions ... Hyde has rushed for 1,064 yards this season.