In today’s edition, we celebrate number 15, the Ohio State’s margin of victory over San Diego State on October 20th, 2001, 27-12. This game was originally scheduled for September 15 but was postponed in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington. So, there was some profound, non-football context involved that season. In terms of football context, this was Jim Tressel’s 1st year as head coach at Ohio State.
The visiting Aztecs took a 12-6 lead into the half and maintained it through most of the 3rd quarter until two SDSU turnovers gave OSU red zone scoring opportunities. The Buckeye offense wasn’t very efficient at the time, so short fields were appreciated.
After a fumble recovery on the SDSU 18, QB Steve Bellisari “led” a 6-play TD drive as scored from 4 yards out. On SDSU’s next possession, Derek Ross picks off an Aztec pass giving the Buckeyes possession at the Aztec 5 yard line. Three plays later Jonathan Wells scored a TD to effectively put the game on ice.
Lydell Ross wrapped up the scoring with his second TD of the day, a 51-yard run early in the 4th quarter. Although total yardage was fairly close, 334-319 in favor of Ohio State, the Buckeyes did take advantage of 5 Aztec turnovers (4 INT’s, 1 Fumble).