Ohio State Buckeyes head coach Urban Meyer reacts on the sidelines in the fourth quarter against the Michigan Wolverines at Ohio Stadium. Ohio State Buckeyes defeated Michigan Wolverines 26-21. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE
Columbus, OH (Sports Network) - In the end, the rivalry was all that mattered.
Ohio State's season was ending no matter the outcome and Michigan lost its opportunity to play for a Big Ten title on Friday when Nebraska beat Iowa. The fourth-ranked Buckeyes, though, managed to complete the sixth perfect season in school history with a 26-21 victory over the 20th-ranked Wolverines at the Horseshoe.
Drew Basil kicked a pair of second-half field goals for Ohio State and the Buckeyes' defense did not allow Michigan to cross midfield in a dominant second half.
The Buckeyes (12-0, 8-0 Big Ten) finished without a loss for the first time since the 2002 national championship season, but Saturday marked the unfortunate conclusion of Urban Meyer's first year as head coach. Ohio State is ineligible for postseason play, part of sanctions stemming from NCAA penalties under former coach Jim Tressel's tenure.
Tressel was on hand for the 10-year celebration of Ohio State's last national championship team and was roundly cheered despite his transgressions that may have cost this year's Buckeyes team an opportunity to play for another title. The NCAA gave Ohio State the one-year postseason ban after an investigation determined that Tressel did not report potential violations during the 2010 season.
Michigan (8-4, 6-2) committed four turnovers and had a three-game winning streak stopped. The Wolverines lost their annual grudge match with Ohio State for the eighth time in the last nine years.
The Sports Network