There is a lot of pressure when playing for the Buckeyes. You also get a lot of help.
Stroud rushed for 294 yards and four touchdowns. The fourth-ranked Buckeyes kept Ryan Day unbeaten with a 45-31 win over Minnesota on Thursday night.
Ohio State trailed at the halftime score (14-10), but Stroud was able to settle down in the locker room. In the second half, he passed for 246 yards.
“Everyone was encouraging me and telling me that I could do it. Stroud said that his teammates believed in him and went 13-22 with just one interception.
Day, who is currently 24-2 overall and 16-0 at conference games in his third year of the job, said that “we weren’t going play it close to our vest.” This is not how we do things here.
The Buckeyes flashed their five-star speed with two 70-plus-yard scores in the opener, one early on a run off right end by Miyan Williams and one late on a third-down screen to true freshman TreVeyon Henderson.
Chris Olave had touchdown catches of 38 and 61 yards, and Garrett Wilson scored on a 56-yard reception that gave Ohio State the lead for good at 24-21 midway through the third quarter. Three minutes later, Haskell Garrett snatched a fumble on a strip-sack Zach Harrison had delivered on Tanner Morgan. He ran it in for an easy 32-yard touchdown.
Stroud stated, “I have great teammates but I feel like a great player too.” “Maybe it wasn’t the best half, but I tried my best in the second.”
More painful for the Gophers than their fade down the stretch was the loss of star running back Mo Ibrahim, who hurt his lower left leg late in the third quarter and left the field in a walking boot.
Preseason Associated Press All-American Terell Smith had 30 carries for 163 yard and two scores. This gave the Gophers the lead.
Coach P.J. Fleck did not provide any updates on Ibrahim’s condition afterward, but stated that the fifth-year running back from Baltimore was happy to be in fourth place on the all-time program’s all time list.