MIAMI- College football's Battle for No. 1 was won yesterday on the
playing fields of New Orleans. In a lesser skirmish in sparkle city the
Big 10 Conference won only its second bowl game in 10.
Ohio State coach Woody Hayes, who came into this 43rd Orange Bowl game
like a lamb was still smiling after the game because his Buckeyes had
defeated Colorado, 27-10, to finish the season with a record of 9-2-1.
Not bad for a team Hayes considers one of the less-talented aggregations
in his 26 years at Columbus.
For one half, it was a game as Colorado (8-4) trailed just 17-10. But,
its offense began to sag "under the weight of the massive Buckeye
defenders and finally collapsed entirely in a second half that seemed to
drag on interminably. The statistics bore out how the victory was
achieved. Ohio State racked up 21 first downs to 12 for Colorado. The
Buckeyes rushed for 271 yards to 134 for the Buffaloes. Colorado passed
for more yardage, 137 to 59, but did so only because its runners were
having so little success. Colorado completed only eight passes all
So bogged down was the Colorado offense, that it could not capitalize on
four lost fumbles by Ohio State. The Buffaloes had scored all their
points before the first quarter had ended.
Mark Ketterberg kicked a 26-yard field goal and Emery Moorehead had
caught an 11-yard pass (video). But touchdowns by Ohio State's Jeff Logan, Pete
Johnson (video) and Rod Gerald (video), plus two field goals by Tom Skladany provided
the final margin as Colorado came no closer to scoring the rest of the
way than missed field goals.
Only 65,537 people turned out for the game, making a total of 11,195 no
shows. It was the smallest crowd to witness the Orange Bowl since the
1951 contest between Clemson and the University of Miami.
Ohio State had opened the game with senior Jim Pacenta at quarterback.
But an early fumble sent him to the bench and when sophomore Rod Gerald
came in and took the Buckeyes on a two-play touchdown drive, it was
clear the game had shifted to Ohio State. Gerald gained 81 yards on 14
Noone had anticipated an artistic game, since neither was a top 10 team,
But the game began conjuring up visions of Norman Mailer sitting down at
his typewriter and striking five incorrect keys to start his working
day. The Colorado kickoff went out of bounds, drawing a penalty. On the
Buckeyes first two plays, Colorado was penalized for being offsides.
Then Pacenta slipped trying a pass. Things settled down after that.
Hayes has never been great fan of the forward pass and he must have
liked the tactics even less when Pacenta dropped to throw early in the
game and was hit, the tackle jolting the ball back 20 yards to the Ohio
State 43 where Colorado's Laval Short recovered.
Quarterback Jeff Knapple threw to Emery Moorehead, advancing the ball to
the Ohio State 32. The Buffaloes went on to post a first down at the
nine, on a run by Jim Kelleher but then came three failures, and Mark
Zetterberg had to come on a kick a 26 yard field goal giving Colorado a
3-0 lead after almost six minutes of play.
For the second consecutive kickoff, Ohio State returned well, this time
to the Colorado 42 on a dash by Jeff Logan. But again, the Buckeyes were
stopped and Tom Skladany was well short on his 56-yard field goal
After Knapple had thrown again to Moorehead moving Colorado to its 42
yard line, Billy Waddy ran 40 yards on a reverse so well camouflaged
that only one Ohio State defender, Tom Roche, was between him and the
goal line. Yet Roche made the tackle. This merely delayed the Colorado
touchdown, however, as Moorehead caught a Knapple pass for 11 yards on a
fourth down play to score. Zetterberg kicked. Colorado led, 10-0, and
from the look on Hayes' face, you would have thought someone had taken
General George Patton's name in vain.
Apparently, this anger catalyzed
his players, for after yet another good return, to the Ohio State 47 by
Jim Harrell, the Buckeyes had a score in two plays. Rod Gerald ran a
keeper and then Logan took a hand off and sprinted 36 yards with 3:11 to
play in the quarter (video). Hayes began to frown a bit less fiercely.
After that quick drive to a touchdown the Buckeyes settled down to one
of their more traditional, antideluvian marches, eschewing the pass and
ramming straight at the Buffaloes. But on a third down and six at the
Colorado 11, Gerald was stopped as he tried to run around left end and
Skladany tied the score, 10-10 with a 28 yard field goal at 9:33.
CU- FG Zetterberg 26
CU- Morehead 11 pass from Knapple (Zetterberg kick)
OSU- Logan 36 run (Skladany kick)
OSU- FG Skladany 28
OSU- Johnson 3 run (Skladany kick)
OSU- FG Skladany 20
OSU- Gerald 4 run (Skladany kick)
CU- Reed 22-58, Kelleher 11-26, Waddy 1-40
OSU- Springs 23-98, Gerald 14-81, Logan 14-80
CU- Knapple 8-22-137
OSU- Gerald 2-6-39
CU- Morehead 4-68, Reed 2-51, Hasselbeck 2-18
OSU- Harrell 2-59