Week Six of the college football season has come and gone and once again your Empire team is here to pass out a few helmet stickers to deserving Buckeyes, and there were oh so many from Saturday night’s 63-38 blasting of the Cornhuskers. Urban Meyer notched his first night-game victory of his Ohio State head coaching career and the Buckeyes now sit at 6-0 overall and 2-0 in-conference, good enough to perch them atop the Leaders Division of the B1G next to also-ineligible Penn State and with a spot in the AP top-10, sitting at 8th.
When you drop 63 points on a ranked opponent it becomes difficult to pass out helmet stickers to all deserving parties, but we’ve once again polled part of our staff here at the Empire and given them the freedom to pass out five helmet stickers each to whoever they wish. Off we go…
In a spot normally reserved for the all-world Braxton Miller, this week we give the nod the cornerback Bradley Roby in this top spot with his fifteen earned leaves, who showed us on Saturday night exactly why he was allowed to change his number from 25 to 1 entering this season. He set the tone early for the nationally televised match-up between ranked teams – set the decibel level on HIGH in Ohio Stadium from the very start – and put six points of his own on the board to start the scoring in a game that saw 101 points put on the board before all was said and done.
Roby finished with four tackles and one pass defended but it was his two picks that made all the difference early.
With 8:29 remaining in a scoreless first quarter, and Ohio State already having posted two 3-and-outs on offense, Roby jumped in front of a Taylor Martinez pass at the Nebraska 41 and ran it untouched into the south end zone and immediately sent an Ohio Stadium record 106,102 fans into an absolute frenzy.
Midway through the second quarter, with the Buckeyes trailing 17-14 and the Huskers’ offense on a roll, the star cornerback intercepted yet another Martinez pass and returned it eight yards into the red zone to set up a Jeff Heuerman touchdown two plays later.
Nebraska would take the lead right back on their next possession but it would be the last of their night, as Ohio State went on to put up 63 points – their highest total in 2012 – and won in a route. But the way Nebraska’s offense started the game, scoring on four of their first seven possessions, Bradley Roby did his part to keep up and hold Ohio State in until Braxton and the offense could get rolling – and man did they ever…
Braxton Miller has made an appearance in all five previous Helmet Sticker posts here at the Empire so it should come as no surprise that he cracked the top-two once again, this week pulling in fifteen more helmet stickers to run his 2012 total up to an astounding 53.
Miller has continued to be the engine that makes this Buckeyes team go, and he’s now led them to six straight victories after a crash landing in 2011. The entire demeanor of the program has changed, and Urban Meyer is certainly the catalyst to that change, but Miller has been the weekly spark in an offense that hasn’t yet found consistency as they transition into Meyer’s spread.
Saturday night was no different, as Miller racked up 313 total yards and accounted for two of Ohio State’s touchdowns on offense, one passing and one running. He also broke his own Ohio State single-game quarterback rushing record by posting 186 on the ground against the Huskers on only 16 carries, good for a. 11.6 yards-per-carry average.
With twelve minutes left in the second quarter, Braxton’s 72-yard run to the Huskers’ 3-yard line set up a Carlos Hyde touchdown that halted the Nebraska momentum and pulled the Buckeyes back within three. He later added a 31-yard touchdown run of his own to put the Buckeyes up 34-24 just before the half.
Carlos Hyde went crazy on the Nebraska defense – AGAIN.
In last year’s heartbreaking defeat in Lincoln Hyde put up his best game as a Buckeye by breaking the cenbtury mark on the ground for the first time in Scarlet and Gray (104 yards) and recorded two touchdowns. Saturday night he had another axe to grind with the Huskers and did just that.
Carlos was a workhorse, carrying the ball 28 times for Meyer and his offense and finished Saturday night with 140 yards on the ground and four touchdowns. Yes, FOUR, including a 16-yard run to close out the scoring at 63-38.
Others receiving helmet stickers this week:
Carlos Hyde (8); John Simon (8); Philly Brown (6); Rod Smith (2); Jeff Heuerman (1)
2012 Season Totals:
- Braxton Miller (53)
- Bradley Roby (19)
- John Simon (15)
- Carlos Hyde (12)
- Devin Smith (10)
- Johnathan Hankins (10)
- Travis Howard (10)
- Etienne Sabino (7)
- Philly Brown (6)
- Doran Grant (6)
- Reid Fragel (6)
- Orhian Johnson (5)
- Ryan Shazier (5)
- Rod Smith (2)
- Jordan Hall (2)
- Nathan Williams (2)
- Jake Stoneburner (1)
- Nathan Williams (1)
- Zach Boren (1)
- Christian Bryant (1)
- Drew Basil (1)
- Jeff Heuerman (1)