for this game

Ohio State rebounds from slow start to beat Akron

Sep 8, 2007 - 10:04 PM COLUMBUS, Ohio (Ticker) -- After a first half full of turnovers and poor field position, Todd Boeckman and Ohio State dispatched another in-state foe.

Boeckman threw for 131 yards and two touchdowns as the 12th-ranked Buckeyes overcame a poor start to post a 20-2 victory over Akron on Saturday.

Despite an opening 30 minutes that included only a field goal and three turnovers, Ohio State (2-0) beat an in-state opponent for 31st straight time. The Buckeyes routed Football Championship Subdivision squad Youngstown State, 38-6, in last week's season opener.

"We didn't take care of the ball the way our offense strives to," tackle Kirk Barton said. "We just can't have it. We put our defense in bad situations with five turnovers. We can't leave our defense hanging out to dry."

Making his first career start with Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Troy Smith gone on to the NFL, the junior Boeckman had very little trouble against the Penguins, completing 17-of-23 passes for 225 yards and two touchdowns.

His second start was not as easy, as miscues and some heady punting by the Zips (1-1) buried the Buckeyes deep in their own territory.

Following an opening drive where it went three-and-out, Ohio State found itself with very few options after a kick by John Stec put the ball at the Buckeyes' 2-yard line 4 1/2 minutes into the first quarter.

The Zips, who dropped a 28-14 decision in the previous meeting here in 2001, grabbed the early lead on the next play when linebacker Brian Stokes wrapped up running back Chris Wells in the end zone for a safety.

Ohio State, which also started its next drive at its own 7-yard line, was unable to get on the board until 8:29 left in the second quarter on a 37-yard field goal by Ryan Pretorius.

"Akron did a nice job of a couple special teams plays early dropping us down in, back on our own two and earned a safety and then next time dropped us in there and we didn't respond with long drives," Ohio State coach Jim Tressel said.

Turnovers hampered the Buckeyes, as Boeckman threw two interceptions in the first half. The first of the two picks proved the most costly, as it stalled a drive just short of the Zips' 20-yard line.

Ohio State also fumbled a punt return with 2:41 remaining before halftime. It finished with five turnovers, losing all three of its fumbles.

Despite those errors, Akron was unable to take advantage due to the stellar Ohio State defense, which held the Zips to 49 total yards before the break.

The defense stepped up again in the second half, recording a pair of sacks on the opening possession in the second half and setting up an eventual 34-yard field goal for Pretorius for a 6-2 lead with 4:27 expired.

In all, the Buckeyes' defensive unit limited the Zips to 69 total yards, including just three on 19 rushes. They also limited Akron to 13 consecutive three-and-out drives between the first and fourth quarters.

"Our defense was in command and did an excellent job and I'm sure held them to under 100 yards," Tressel said. "They were getting off the field in three and out consistently, creating good field position."

"I think our defense did a good job of just trying to get off the field," linebacker Marcus Freeman said. "We've been stretching trying to get more three-and-outs, and I think that's something we did a good job of doing today."

Ohio State eventually found the end zone on its next possession, as Boeckman connected with freshman running back Brandon Saine for a six-yard scoring pass and a 13-2 advantage with 6:20 left in the third.

Boeckman, who finished 14-of-23, also hit junior receiver Brian Robiskie for a 13-yard TD with 10 minutes remaining in the fourth.

Along with the poor early field position, a mild downpour early appeared to bother Boeckman, who went 7-of-10 for 87 yards after the half.

"I thought early in the game, there may have been a little of an adjustment problem," Tressel said. "There was some penetration, which when you're on defense that's what you want to do - you want to penetrate, affect the quarterback.

"I think the field position was something that made us less than comfortable. We had a little bit of a downpour there that didn't make it easy. But good news is, I thought he settled down and improved his performance."

Wells, who had three rushes for 71 yards on the final scoring drive, finished with a career-high 143 yards on 20 carries for the Buckeyes.

The sophomore running back racked up 96 of his rushing yards in the second half, and Ohio State finished with 248 of its 363 total yards after the break.

"I believe our offense really turned the corner in the second half," senior fullback Dionte Johnson said. "We still can't turn the ball over, can't put it on the ground."

Robiskie finished with four catches for 82 yards and Brian Hartline added eight for 43 for the Buckeyes.

Akron quarterback Chris Jacquemain went 12-of-21 for 48 yards before being replaced.

"They are tough, fast and just overall very good," Jacquemain said of the Ohio State defense. "They really disrupted us. I knew I was not going to have a lot of time to throw, so when I changed a play it was always a quick pass."






  • 5
    roots
    mrman226 Added 5 roots

    Akron 2, Ohio State(12) 20  FinalMar 16 8:38 AM


  • NCAAF FINAL
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    AKRON 2 0 0 0 2
    OHIO ST (12) 0 3 10 7 20 FINAL
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: AKRON - SAFETY, CHRIS WELLS RAN OUT OF END
    ZONE 4:48. AKRON 2-0
    2ND QUARTER: OHIO ST - FG, RYAN PRETORIUS 37 YD, 7:06.
    OHIO ST 3-2
    3RD QUARTER: OHIO ST - FG, RYAN PRETORIUS 33 YD, 4:53.
    OHIO ST 6-2
    OHIO S

    Sep 8 3:06 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD OHIO ST
    BRIAN ROBISKIE 13 YD PASS FROM TODD BOECKMAN
    (RYAN PRETORIUS KICK)
    AKRON 2
    OHIO ST (12) 20 9:18 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Akron vs. Ohio State(12)Sep 8 2:47 PM


  • NCAAF END, 3RD QTR
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    AKRON 2 0 0 2
    OHIO ST (12) 0 3 10 13 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: AKRON - SAFETY, CHRIS WELLS RAN OUT OF END
    ZONE 4:48. AKRON 2-0
    2ND QUARTER: OHIO ST - FG, RYAN PRETORIUS 37 YD, 7:06.
    OHIO ST 3-2
    3RD QUARTER: OHIO ST - FG, RYAN PRETORIUS 33 YD, 4:53.
    OH

    Sep 8 2:30 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD OHIO ST
    BRANDON SAINE 6 YD PASS FROM TODD BOECKMAN
    (RYAN PRETORIUS KICK)
    AKRON 2
    OHIO ST (12) 13 6:10 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    Akron vs. Ohio State(12)Sep 8 2:15 PM


  • NCAAF
    FG OHIO ST
    RYAN PRETORIUS 33 YD
    AKRON 2
    OHIO ST (12) 6 10:07 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    Akron vs. Ohio State(12)Sep 8 2:03 PM


  • NCAAF HALFTIME
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    AKRON 2 0 2
    OHIO ST (12) 0 3 3 HALFTIME
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: AKRON - SAFETY, CHRIS WELLS RAN OUT OF END
    ZONE 4:48. AKRON 2-0
    2ND QUARTER: OHIO ST - FG, RYAN PRETORIUS 37 YD, 7:06.
    OHIO ST 3-2

    Sep 8 1:30 PM


  • NCAAF
    FG OHIO ST
    RYAN PRETORIUS 37 YD
    AKRON 2
    OHIO ST (12) 3 7:54 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Akron vs. Ohio State(12)Sep 8 1:10 PM


  • NCAAF END, 1ST QTR
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    AKRON 2 2
    OHIO ST (12) 0 0 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: AKRON - SAFETY, CHRIS WELLS RAN OUT OF END
    ZONE 4:48. AKRON 2-0

    Sep 8 12:47 PM


  • NCAAF
    SAFETY AKRON
    CHRIS WELLS RAN OUT OF END ZONE
    AKRON 2
    OHIO ST (12) 0 10:12 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Akron vs. Ohio State(12)Sep 8 12:25 PM