Wisconsin's Jonathan Taylor was the freshman running back who dominated during the regular season but it was Ohio State's freshman running back who was the difference maker in the Big Ten Championship game. J.K. Dobbins rushed for 174 yards on 17 carries and was named MVP as the Buckeyes ended Wisconsin's perfect season and bid for the College Football Playoff with a 27-21 win in Indianapolis.
Dobbins ripped off two long runs. His 77-yard burst in the second quarter set up a touchdown run by quarterback J.T. Barrett and his 53-yard dash in the third quarter led to an Ohio State field goal.
Barrett started and played the entire game at quarterback for Ohio State just six days removed from arthroscopic knee surgery. He threw for two big touchdowns, an 84-yard strike in the first quarter to Terry McLaurin and a 57-yard screen pass that Parris Campbell turned into a first quarter score as well.
It wasn't perfect for Barrett though. He threw two interceptions--one was returned 9 yards for a touchdown by Wisconsin's Andrew Van Ginkle and the other, near midfield, led to another Badger score. Nonetheless, Barrett became the all-time winningest quarterback in Ohio State history and also broke the single season record for touchdown passes.
Defensively, Ohio State smothered Taylor. The Badger back was held to only 41 yards on 15 carries. It was Ohio State turnovers--the interceptions by Barrett and a fumble by Mike Weber--that kept Wisconsin in the game. The Badgers converted the Buckeye miscues into 18 of their 21 points.
The Buckeyes (11-2) now await the College Football Playoff poll, due out Sunday, to find out if their performance was good enough to climb into the top four.
Below are Big Ten Network interviews with Urban Meyer, J.T. Barrett and J.K Dobbins, as well as the game highlights.