Iowa routs Ohio State to squash the Buckeyes' playoff path

Sunday, 05 Nov, 2017

Meyer said in his weekly presser that Kinnick Stadium presents a unique atmosphere, but this team should be used to impressively loud stadiums and crowds at this point. Last year, No. 2 MI got dumped at Iowa, 14-13.

Ohio State: It's nearly impossible to see a path that takes the two-loss Buckeyes to the playoff after a loss like this. Before getting into detail, here are two suggestions for quarterback J.T. Barrett.

Leading up to this week, Barrett may have played himself into Heisman Trophy talk. On Saturday, he had a stunningly bad performance. Barrett's first pass attempt of the game was picked off and returned for a touchdown, setting the tone in what ended up as a nightmare performance for the redshirt senior.

It was a sign of things to come. And credit goes to an Iowa offense that entered the game No. 10 in the Big Ten overall (345.9 ypg), No. 10 in scoring (25.0 ppg) and No. 10 in rushing (130.8 ypg). All Ohio State can do now is win out - and blow out an unbeaten Wisconsin in the league title game like in 2014 - and hope that enough chaos has broken out across the country that a two-loss team might get a look from the committee. The Buckeyes prevailed after a furious second-half comeback, in a result that seemed to clarify the conference pecking order: Ohio State was on top, Penn State was a close No. 2, and then a gap existed between that pair and everyone else.

The #Ohio State Buckeyes traveled to Iowa City Saturday afternoon to take on the 5-3 #Iowa Hawkeyes.

Barrett and the Buckeyes regained possession down 24-17 late in the first half.

Honestly, Barrett should have been benched after his third interception.

The run game had struggled for most of Big Ten play. Iowa punter Colten Rastetter lined up at quarterback, and after the snap, the center snuck out for a pass over the middle, caught a wobbling football, and stumbled down to the 3-yard line. This felt as bad as OSU's 31-0 loss to Clemson in the playoff a year ago, as the Buckeyes had 371 yards. This one-handed pick from Jackson was his best by far. Rather than respond with another score, Barrett threw his second interception of game. By the of the Iowa showdown, he added three more.

With their big win over Penn State last week, the Buckeyes are ranked No. 6 in the first CFP rankings of 2017 and leapt into the national conversation for a playoff spot. Iowa also knocked off unbeaten teams MI (2016) and Penn State (2008) in the regular season's final month.

As far as the Big Ten as a whole, Wisconsin, which remained undefeated with a win over IN, is likely the conference's only serious contender to make the playoff.