PHOTO: USA Today Sports
Last week, we posted about the celebration on the Ohio State Buckeyes bus after Auburn returned a missed FG for a TD to upset #1 Alabama. This win by Auburn put undefeated Ohio State in the drivers seat for a BCS National Championship Game birth. All the Buckeyes had to do was beat the Michigan State Spartans, who have been flying under the radar all season long. We even speculated about the SEC's title run coming to an end because of this Auburn win.
Ohio State came into the Big Ten Championship Game having won 24 straight games. Since becoming head coach of the Buckeyes, Urban Meyer was 24-0. Michigan State came into this game an impressive 11-1 with their only loss coming to Notre Dame (by four points).
Michigan State jumped out to a 17-0 lead against Ohio State but the Buckeyes bounced back scoring the next 24 points behind Braxton Miller's two TD runs and one TD pass. The Spartans would own the fourth quarter. Spartans QB Connor Cook hit Josiah Price for a 9 yard TD pass in the back of the end zone to put the Spartans up and then RB Jeremy Langford put a stamp on it with a 26 yard TD run. The Buckeyes couldn't do anything against the Spartans defense in the fourth quarter (with drives of just 4 yards, 9 yards and 12 yards).
One week after celebrating the fact that they would be in the BCS Championship Game with a win in the Big Ten Championship Game, the Ohio State Buckeyes couldn't finish the drill and are now left on the outside looking in after winning 24 straight games.
Ohio State celebrated the Auburn win, but now it's Auburn who is celebrating the Ohio State loss as this opens up a spot in the BCS Championship game for the Auburn Tigers. After their improbable run, Auburn took care of the Missouri Tigers in the SEC Championship Game and under first-year head coach Gus Malzahn will now face the FSU Seminoles for the National Championship.
Michigan State's win puts them into the Rose Bowl against Stanford. This will be the Spartans first trip to the Rose Bowl since 1987. What happens to Ohio State? It looks like their likely landing spot is now the Orange Bowl against Clemson but we will have to wait until later today to find that out.
This was a crazy weekend in college football. NIU, Ohio State and Oklahoma State all controlled their own destiny. Win and they would receive a spot in the BCS. All three of them lost. For NIU and Oklahoma State, it knocked them completely out of the BCS picture. For Ohio State, it cost them a shot at the National Championship and opened the door for the Auburn Tigers, who seem to be a team of destiny.