Looking back at Ohio State coach Urban Meyer’s five wins vs. Michigan

Two of last five games decided on final play

The Ohio State-Michigan rivalry has always been important to Urban Meyer. Long before he became head coach of the Ohio State Buckeyes, he knew what The Game meant because’s an Ohio native.

“As a fan, you sit back and you think it’s one of the coolest things in the world, and you never miss it,” Meyer said Monday. “I remember I was coaching at Colorado State and we were playing Hawaii. Mike Trgovac was our defensive line coach. He was a great player. He went to the school up north. We had to get up at some ridiculous hour to watch the game, 5 a.m. or something.”

THE RIVALRY: Five things to love | Meyer on this week’s game | By the numbers

Meyer has not lost to Michigan as a head coach and will improve to 6-0 in his tenure if the Buckeyes (9-2, 7-1) beat the Wolverines (8-3, 5-3) on Saturday in Ann Arbor, Mich. Here’s a look back at Meyer’s first five victories in the series:

Best game: Ohio State’s 30-27 victory in double overtime last November at Ohio Stadium might be the best game period of the Meyer era. It at least had the best finish. A 15-yard touchdown run by Curtis Samuel clinched the victory.

“That is one of the classic games of this rivalry that will forever be because I know this rivalry as well as anybody,” Meyer said after the game. “That game is right in there. I’m not saying it’s the greatest, because that’s disrespectful for the other players that have played in it. But that’s an instant classic between two great teams.”

Most lopsided victory: One week after a stunning 17-14 loss at home to Michigan State, an Ohio State team loaded with future first-round draft picks routed Michigan 42-13 in Ann Arbor. This was the first time Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh coached against Meyer and the Buckeyes.

Best performance by a running back: Ezekiel Elliott rushed 30 times for 214 yards and two touchdowns in 2015.

Best performance by a quarterback: In Ohio State’s 42-41 victory at Michigan in 2013, Braxton Miller rushed for 153 yards and three touchdowns and passed for 133 yards and two touchdowns.

Best performance by a wide receiver: Corey Brown caught eight passes for 95 yards and a touchdown in a 26-21 victory in Columbus in 2012. This was Meyer’s first victory against Michigan. The Buckeyes clinched a 12-0 season.

Best performance by a kicker: Drew Basil made 4 of 5 field goals, including a 52-yard attempt, in the 2012 victory. His two field goals in the second half were the only scores by either team and brought Ohio State back from a 21-20 halftime deficit.

Best defensive performance: Defensive end Joey Bosa had a sack, a forced fumble and an interception in the 2015 game.

Biggest defensive play: Safety Tyvis Powell intercepted a two-point conversion pass from Devin Gardner in 2013, sealing an Ohio State victory as the Wolverines went for the win at home instead of the extra point that would have forced overtime. Powell stepped in front of Drew Dileo to pick off the pass in the end zone.

“We felt like we could win the game right there,” Gardner said.

MORE: Offensive linemen take center stage

Worst moment: Quarterback J.T. Barrett broke his ankle on the first play of the fourth quarter in the 2014 game in Columbus. The Buckeyes led 28-21 at the time. Cardale Jones led one touchdown drive, and Darron Lee sealed a 42-28 victory with a fumble return for a touchdown.

Biggest crowd: Ohio State set an Ohio Stadium attendance record in 2016 with a crowd of 110,045 for the game vs. Michigan.

Best press conference: After the victory last season, Meyer’s cell phone rang at the beginning of his postgame press conference. It was his wife Shelley.

“I’ll get right back to you,” he told her. “I’m at the press conference. All right. Bye.”

Meyer then told the reporters, “She said bring a gallon of milk home on the way home.”

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Sports

Wittenberg climbs two spots in D3Hoops.com poll
Wittenberg climbs two spots in D3Hoops.com poll

The Wittenberg Tigers climbed two spots in the D3Hoops.com poll Monday, rising from No. 5 to No. 3. It’s the program’s highest ranking since it was No. 2 in the final poll of the 2005-06 season. It lost to Virginia Wesleyan in the national championship game that season. Wittenberg (17-0, 10-0) is one of two unbeaten teams remaining in the...
Andy Dalton or Nick Foles? Depends on the month
Andy Dalton or Nick Foles? Depends on the month

On the heels of our wildly successful discussion about whether or not Andy Dalton is better than Blake Bortles (anymore), there is only one logical next step.  Who is better: Andy Dalton or Tom Brady?  Just kidding… But seriously, have you seen the guy who is quarterbacking the team that will oppose Brady’s Patriots in the Super...
Fenwick takes competitive balance hit in football; moves up to D-III
Fenwick takes competitive balance hit in football; moves up to D-III

Fenwick is the only area football program to take a hit in the revised competitive balance figures for the upcoming football season. A Greater Catholic League North Division member, the Falcons were bumped up from Division IV to D-III. That wasn’t unexpected. Fenwick missed the cutoff for being lumped in D-III last season by one boy. “Obviously...
TCU coach Jamie Dixon no stranger to West Virginia after years at Pittsburgh
TCU coach Jamie Dixon no stranger to West Virginia after years at Pittsburgh

FORT WORTH — TCU men’s basketball has never defeated West Virginia. The Horned Frogs are 0-11 all-time vs. Bob Huggins and the No. 7 Mountaineers. And while he hasn’t been able to solve West Virginia in two tries since arriving in Fort Worth, Jamie Dixon is certainly someone the Horned Frogs want guiding them...
Ryan Day expected to remain with Ohio State football after Titans offer, per report
Ryan Day expected to remain with Ohio State football after Titans offer, per report

Just days after former Ohio State player and assistant coach Mike Vrabel took the head coaching job for the Tennessee Titans, news broke that current Buckeyes co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Ryan Day will not be joining him and is remaining in Columbus. ESPN’s Adam Schefter had the report. Schefter had...
More Stories