This Date In Buckeye History

Every day in the late summer and fall has its moments in Ohio State football history, and Oct. 31 is no different. Halloween hasn't been too scary for Ohio State. The Buckeyes are 11-3 on this date, but one of the three losses came in game affected by an outbreak of dysentery. Take a trip back through the BSB archives (and beyond) in this edition of "This Date In Buckeye History."

1998: No. 1 Ohio State 38, Indiana 7 – Quarterback Joe Germaine continued an impressive stretch of games with his fourth consecutive 300-plus yard passing performance.

Germaine completed 31 of 45 passes for 351 yards and three touchdowns as the top-rated Buckeyes won in Bloomington. Ohio State piled up 551 yards of total offense.

"For the most part our offense played tremendously well," Germaine said in the Nov. 7, 1998, edition of Buckeye Sports Bulletin. "We executed our game plan very well. That's a tribute to our coaches for getting us prepared."

Dee Miller was Germaine's top target, hauling in 11 passes for 159 yards. Split end David Boston added 110 yards and two scores on nine receptions. The Hoosiers tried to take away Ohio State's rushing attack, but even that didn't work. OSU outgained Indiana 161-77 on the ground.

"We're not stupid," Ohio State head coach John Cooper said. "If they put eight or nine men in the box, I think it's good to have guys like Dee and David to catch the ball and somebody like Joe to pass the ball.

"Then we had the added punch of David Boston returning punts."

Boston returned a punt 70 yards for a touchdown to start the scoring, and the Buckeyes (8-0, 5-0 Big Ten) built a 21-0 first-half lead. Michael Wiley added a 2-yard touchdown run, and John Lumpkin caught a 6-yard TD pass from Germaine. Indiana freshman quarterback Antwaan Randle El got his team on the scoreboard with a 37-yard touchdown pass, but the Hoosiers still trailed 21-7 at halftime.

Boston added two more trips to the end zone in the second half on receptions of 3 and 2 yards. Dan Stultz booted a 21-yard field goal in between Boston's touchdowns.

Despite the lopsided score, Germaine and the first-team offense remained in the game until the final OSU touchdown, which came with 6:26 remaining when Boston scored on his 2-yard haul. Cooper was asked why after the game.

"We were trying to get Joe his 300 yards," Cooper said. "That's why we stayed up top there. We got him that and we got him out of there. Of course, that was his fourth straight 300-yard game. That was what we were thinking."

1992: Ohio State 38, Iowa 15 – Two teams heading in different directions met in Iowa City, with the Buckeyes making another step toward a possible Citrus Bowl berth.

Ohio State had it share of injury problems in '92, with starters like quarterback Kirk Herbstreit, offensive linemen Alan Kline and Jason Winrow, running backs Robert Smith and Raymont Harris, tight end Joe Metzger, cornerback Tim Walton and flanker Joey Galloway missing playing time.

But while the Buckeyes (6-2, 3-2) were starting to finally get healthy, the Hawkeyes were battling through crucial injuries. Iowa was without quarterback Jim Hartlieb and linebackers Teddy Jo Faley and Mike Dailey, and those losses led to a relatively easy victory for the Buckeyes.

"I looked down the sidelines and there is Hartlieb, Dailey and Faley, all standing in street clothes," longtime Iowa head coach Hayden Fry said in the Nov. 7, 1992, BSB. "That's my starting quarterback and both my starting linebackers out of the game. As you can imagine, that doesn't give you a very secure feeling."

With the starting linebackers out of the lineup, Ohio State's offense had a successful afternoon. Herbstreit completed 7 of 9 passes for 81 yards, and tailback Robert Smith rushed for 129 yards and two touchdowns. Smith started the scoring with a pair of touchdown runs from 1 and 7 yards, respectively, and Ohio State led 28-7 at halftime.

"I thought Robert was the difference in this game," Cooper said. "He's starting to get healthy again now again, and he makes things happen."

Junior fullback Jeff Cothran added a 2-yard TD run in the second quarter, and fullback William Houston bowled into the end zone in the fourth quarter from 1-yard out. Placekicker Tim Williams also booted a 33-yard field goal in the third quarter.

The Ohio State defense also had an impressive performance. The Buckeyes held Iowa to 37 yards rushing and made seven tackles behind the line of scrimmage with two sacks. Chico Nelson and Tim Walton each had seven tackles to lead the defense. Bryan Cook intercepted an Iowa pass.

1987: No. 20 Michigan State 13, No. 15 Ohio State 7 – Ohio State's Rose Bowl hopes took a big hit, and the Spartans took a major step toward their first trip to Pasadena since the 1965 season with a victory in Columbus.

A long touchdown reception by Everett Ross on the first play from scrimmage was the lone highlight on a bad day for the Ohio State offense, which managed only 147 yards for the games. Despite how poorly the offense had fared, the Buckeyes still had a chance to take the lead when the offense took over at its own 20-yard line with 12:18 left in the fourth quarter. Tupa led OSU 47 yards in eight plays to the MSU 35 before facing a crucial fourth-and-12. Tupa had been relieved by backup Greg Frey when he got up slowly after taking a hit during the drive, and Frey threw a strike to flanker Vince Workman on fourth down. Unfortunately for the Buckeyes, Workman misjudged the throw and dropped the ball at the Spartans 20.

Even with the turnover on downs, Ohio State was not out of it yet. The Buckeye defense, who kept the team in the game throughout the afternoon, forced Michigan State to punt. Ohio State's offense had one last shot, taking over at the OSU 9 with 3:09 remaining. Frey remained at quarterback, but it did not matter. The Spartans forced an incompletion on first down and sacked Frey on second and third down. Bruce elected to punt, forcing much of the now hostile crowd to the exits. The Spartans took over with 1:38 left and successfully ran out the clock.

Despite the loss the defense impressed, holding the Spartans 68 yards in the second half. Michigan State scored all of its points before intermission.

"There weren't any changes made (at halftime)," linebacker Chris Spielman said in the Nov. 7, 1987, BSB. "The first half we had a little trouble with (MSU quarterback Bobby) McAllister, and (running back) Lorenzo (White) hit one (for a 38-yard gain)."

That run by White set up an15-yard TD run by McAllister two plays later. John Langeloh added field goals of 40 and 20 yards to cap the scoring.

Ohio State fell to 5-2-1 and 3-2 in the Big Ten with the loss. Michigan State took control of its own Rose Bowl destiny, improving to 5-2-1 and 4-0-1 in conference with three weeks left in the season.

"I'm not concerned about that right now," Bruce said of his team's wilting Rose Bowl hopes. "I'm just concerned about us getting back as a football team and winning against Wisconsin (Nov. 7). Obviously, after a defeat like this, there's a tremendous letdown by our football team. We have to gather them up and get going again. I can't think about what's happened. This is over. That's the end of that."

That was not the end of that for some of the OSU faithful in Ohio Stadium, however. As Bruce walked up the ramp to the locker room, one irate fan berated the head coach.

"You stink, Bruce. Do something. Why don't you quit?," the fan bellowed.

The Spartans would go on to win the 1988 Rose Bowl. They defeated USC 20-17.

1981: Ohio State 45, Purdue 33 – The visiting Buckeyes outlasted the Boilermakers in a game that featured a whopping 852 yards passing.

Art Schlichter threw for 366 of those yards and completed 19 of 33 passes with three touchdowns and an interception. Purdue QB Scott Campbell threw for a then-school record 516 yards in a losing effort.

Two of Schlichter's touchdowns went to Cedric Anderson, with the other one being caught by John Frank in the fourth quarter to cap the scoring and end a Boilermaker rally. Purdue had cut Ohio State's 38-20 lead with a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns that cut the deficit to five points.

Bruce was elated with the victory.

"I'll have to tell you," Bruce said in the Nov. 7, 1981, BSB. "that's one of our great victories since I've been at Ohio State. We beat a team that is very difficult to beat at home, but our team never let up.

"We came after them offensively and we stuck in there defensively. We made some big play and we gave up some big plays. Purdue is a fine football team. They have a lot of courage."

Gary Williams caught a team-high seven passes for 126 yards, while Anderson caught five balls for 117 yards. Ohio State improved to 6-2 overall and 4-1 in the Big Ten.

1970: No. 2 Ohio State 24, No. 20 Northwestern 10 – A big second-half effort led the Buckeyes past the visiting Wildcats.

A then-record 86,673 at Ohio Stadium watched Northwestern take a 10-3 lead into the break before Woody Hayes' tradition rushing attack took over. The Buckeyes finally wore down Northwestern and scored three touchdowns in the second half.

Fullback John Brockington carried the ball 42 times for 161 for the 6-0 Buckeyes. Ohio State outgained the Wildcats 336-93 on the ground, but three interceptions, eight penalties and two turnovers on downs kept the game close.

1964: No. 1 Ohio State 21, Iowa 19 – Despite being outgained 315-189 by the Hawkeyes, the top-ranked Buckeyes escaped with a victory.

Things started well for Ohio State (6-0). Steve Dreffer interecepted an Iowa pass and returned it 36 yards for a touchdown only 41 seconds into the game. The Buckeyes held a 21-13 lead in the fourth quarter, but the Hawkeyes did not quit. Iowa cut the deficit to two after a 67-yard drive ended in a 1-yard touchdown run by Craig Nourse. Hawkeye quarterback Gary Snook attempted to tie the game with a naked reverse around left end on the two-point conversion attempt, but Ike Kelly stopped Snook inches short of the goal line.

1959: Ohio State 30, Michigan State 24 – A dark and rainy afternoon had a sunny ending for the Buckeyes, who defeated the favored Spartans at Ohio Stadium.

Ohio State (3-3) scored in each quarter and were led by Tom Matte, who was making his first start at quarterback after being moved from halfback. He guided the Buckeyes to 420 yards of total offense. Matte also threw touchdown passes for 57, 17 and 13 yards in the victory. It was the first time an Ohio State quarterback threw three touchdown passes in a game since John Borton did so in 1952.

The loss cost the Spartans a chance to win the Big Ten title. MSU finished second in the conference to Wisconsin. The game was also Ohio State's first win over Michigan State in four contests.

1953: Ohio State 27, Northwestern 13 – The Buckeyes played well in only their third home game of the season, knocking off the Wildcats on homecoming.

Dave Leggett completed 6 of 10 passes for 110 yards, and Hopalong Cassady rushed for 65 yards and a touchdown to lead the offensive attack for the Buckeyes (5-1). Ohio State led in first downs, 22-19, and in total yards, 476-302.

1942: No. 6 Wisconsin 17, No. 1 Ohio State 7 – The Buckeyes suffered their lone loss of the '42 season at Camp Randall Stadium.

The loss would be known as the "bad water game" by Buckeye fans because of an attack of dysentery suffered by nearly half of the team. The ailment was caused by old water the team drank on the trip to Madison. Because of the war efforts, the Buckeyes were forced to travel in antiquated railroad coaches that had not been used in several years. The water in the coaches was not drained before fresh water was added, causing massive illness among the team.

With Ohio State clearly not at 100 percent, the Badgers took advantage on homecoming. Fullback Pat Harder put UW ahead 7-0 in the second quarter with an 8-yard TD run. The Badgers built the lead to 10-0 at halftime thanks to a 37-yard field goal, also by Harder.

Two lost fumbles cost Ohio State promising drives in the third quarter, but the Buckeyes (5-1) eventually cut the lead to three points when Paul Sarringhaus scored a touchdown at the end of a 96-yard drive early in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately for the Buckeyes, that was as close as they would get. A 66-yard scoring march by the Badgers increased the lead and sealed the victory.

1936: Notre Dame 7, Ohio State 2 – A then-record 50,017 crammed into Notre Dame Stadium and watched the Fighting Irish outlast the 2-3 Buckeyes on a rainy afternoon in South Bend in a game that was overshadowed by the classic the teams played in 1935.

Notre Dame only had one sustained offensive drive the entire game, but that was enough. A 4-yard touchdown run by Nevin "Bunny" McCormick proved to be the game-winning score. Ohio State's lone points came on a safety when Charles Hamrick blocked a punt through the back of the end zone.

1931: Ohio State 13, Indiana 0 – Five interceptions led the Buckeyes to a victory in Bloomington. Both OSU touchdowns were scored by Carl Cramer, who reached the end zone the second time on a 70-yard punt return in the fourth quarter.

Tackle Bill Bell and end Sid Gillman led the defensive attack for Ohio State (3-2).

1925: Ohio State 17, Wooster 0 – The Buckeyes rebounded from a loss to Iowa by whitewashing the Scots.

Ohio State improved to 3-1-1 with the home victory.

1908: Ohio State 20, Ohio Wesleyan 9 – After trailing at halftime, the Buckeyes rallied to defeat Ohio Wesleyan and head coach Branch Rickey.

Rickey – who is better known as the Los Angeles Dodgers executive who broke the color barrier by signing Jackie Robinson in 1947 – predicted a victory over the Buckeyes (3-3) the night before the game at a pep rally. A large contingent of supporters watched the Methodists (who later changed their nickname to the Battling Bishops in 1925) build a 5-0 lead midway through the first quarter. OWU held a 5-4 halftime lead, but Ohio State rallied for three touchdowns – all scored by sophomore halfback Leslie Wells.

1903: Ohio State 34, West Virginia 6 – OSU got back on the winning track with a home win against the Mountaineers.

The Buckeyes improved to 6-1 a week after dropping a 12-0 game at Case.


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