The Ohio State Buckeyes began their Big Ten slate the same way they ended the non-conference portion of their schedule, with a dominating win.
Two weeks after dismantling the Oklahoma Sooners, 45-24, on the road in Norman, the second-ranked Buckeyes returned to Columbus, and against their former defensive coordinator, Chris Ash, and Rutgers (2-3, 0-2 Big Ten Conference), Ohio State (4-0, 1-0) earned a 58-0 victory over the Scarlet Knights at Ohio Stadium.
Buckeyes junior quarterback J.T. Barrett led the way by going 21 of 29 for 238 yards with four touchdowns against one interception. After turning the ball over in the first quarter, Barrett engineered five straight scoring drives before halftime, and became the school’s all-time leader in passing touchdowns.
Barrett went from third to first on the all-time list with the four touchdowns against Rutgers, besting both Joe Germaine (1996-1998) and Bobby Hoying (1992-1995). Currently, Barrett has 59 passing touchdowns in his Ohio State career.
Barrett threw touchdown passes to running backs Curtis Samuel and Dontre Wilson, as well as tight end Marcus Baugh and wide receiver Terry McLaurin in the win over Rutgers.
Although Barrett led the Buckeyes, he got plenty of help from the running game.
Starting running back Mike Weber rushed for 144 yards and one touchdown on 14 carries, while true freshman Demario McCall scampered for 85 yards and one touchdown on 10 attempts. Weber, a redshirt freshman, scored from 46 yards out and McCall sprinted around right end for a 20-yard touchdown late in the third quarter.
While the offense was clicking on all cylinders, Ohio State’s defense bounced back from some early completions on inside slant routes to pitch their first shutout and not allow an offensive touchdown for the third time in four games this season.
The Buckeyes surrendered just 116 yards of total offense, including 33 passing on three completions in 16 attempts from Rutgers quarterbacks Chris Laviano and Tylin Oden, who were sacked three times in the road loss.
Ohio State will put its undefeated record on the line with a home game against the Indiana Hoosiers in Columbus next Saturday.