COLUMBUS, Ohio — Michigan fell behind early and the score steamrolled from there en route to a 62-39 loss to Ohio State in their Big Ten Conference college football rivalry at Ohio Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Michigan entered the game as a 4 1/2-point favorite. The Wolverines are ranked No. 4 in the nation while the Buckeyes are rated 10th.
Both teams brought 10-1 records into the contest. OSU has now won the last seven meetings between the two and 13 of the past 14. Those figures do not include a Buckeye triumph in 2010 that was vacated by the NCAA.
Michigan leads the all-time series 58-50-6.
This time around Ohio State jumped ahead from the outset on a 24-yard pass from quarterback Dwayne Haskins to Chris Olave to jump out to a 7-0 advantage at the 11:29 mark of the opening frame.
Then with 6:22 left in the opener, Michigan’s Jake Moody converted a 39-yard field goal to narrow the gap to 7-3, a margin that stood until the initial break.
The Wolverines moved to within 7-6 on Moody’s 31-yard field on the first play of the second stanza.
At the 9:08 mark Haskins and Olave repeated their earlier 24-yard TD connection for a 14-6 Buckeye bulge. Haskins then came right back and hit Johnnie Dixon with a 31-yard scoring strike for a 21-6 edge with 3:18 to go until intermission.
The Wolverines then scored twice to close the half — first on a 21-yard scoring pass from quarterback Shea Patterson to Nico Collins with 0:47 showing on the clock and then 6 seconds later on a pass from Patterson to Chris Evans. The latter two-point conversion attempt failed for a 21-19 count.
But Ohio State stormed right back and as time elapsed Blake Haubeil booted a 19-yard field goal to set the halfway score at 24-19.
The second half saw the two trade possessions until the Buckeyes scored on another 19-yarder by Haubeil for a 27-19 margin. Ohio State then scored on a blocked punt for a 34-19 advantage at the 4:41 juncture of the third quarter. That gap soon ballooned to 41-19 in favor of OSU, which held until the final stop.
Collins then hauled in his second TD pass of the day from Patterson, followed by another failed two-point conversion, to reduce Michigan’s deficit to 41-25 with 14:11 to go in the game. But Ohio State came right back with a 78-yard scoring scamper for a 48-25 lead with 13:55 showing on the clock.
With 9:35 left, Ben Mason bulled into the endzone from 1 yard out to slice the margin to 48-32 for the Wolverines.
But once again Ohio State responded on the scoreboard, this time on a 1-yard pass from Haskins to K.J. Hill for a 55-32 count with 7:35 remaining. The Buckeyes then added another Haskins touchdown pass — a 16-yarder to Parris Campbell — for a 62-32 advantage as time wound down.
Michigan scored on a Joe Milton 4-yard run to close to within 62-39 with 3:16 left to set the final score.
This marked the regular-season finales for both Michigan and Ohio State.
Next up for Ohio State will be the Big Ten Championship battle against Northwestern next Saturday night at Lucas Oil Stadium in downtown Indianapolis.