Ohio offensive linemen Deontae and Devontae Armstong have committed to Ohio State's class of 2024.
A trip to Pasadena represented the goal for John Cooper's 1994 team. With only nine starters back, though, that goal appeared lofty.
Cooper knew he had Bobby Hoying returning at quarterback and weapons all over the field. Joey Galloway, Chris Sanders and tight end Rickey Dudley provided potent targets for the junior signal caller. Korey Stringer and a freshman stud named Orlando Pace plowed the way for junior tailback Eddie George.
Talented players also loaded Ohio State's defense. Luke Fickell, Matt Finkes and Mike Vrabel manned a formidable defensive line. Linebackers Lorenzo Styles and Craig Powell were tackling machines, and Marlon Kerner and Shawn Springs added stability to the secondary.
|The 1994 Buckeyes|
|B1G Record||6–2, 2nd|
|Coach||John Cooper (7th year, 54–26–4)|
|CaptainS||Joey Galloway, Marlon Kerner|
Games of Note
August 29th • Fresno State • Anaheim Stadium
The 1994 Disneyland Pigskin Classic came on an 81-degree Monday evening in Anaheim, California. Jim Sweeney's Fresno State team entered on the heels of an 8–4 season in which they defeated BYU 48-45 in Provo.
No. 20 Ohio State did not take Bulldogs lightly and jumped out to a 21-0 lead. In the second half, Fresno State pulled to within 24-10, but an amazing 8-yard Galloway touchdown run put the game out of reach in the third quarter.
Galloway took a reverse to the left, stopped, reversed back and raced to the right corner of the end zone. The crazy fast receiver covered what seemed like 80 yards before finding pay dirt. Josh Jackson tacked on a late field goal and the Buckeyes won their eighth consecutive opener by a score of 34-10.
Eddie George led all rushers with 90 yards and two touchdowns. The junior running back capped the season's opening drive with a 1-yard touchdown plunge. In the second quarter, his second 1-yard touchdown run extended Ohio State's lead to 21.
To go along with his rushing touchdown, Galloway caught two passes for 88 yards and a touchdown. His 67-yard touchdown catch was a game-changer. Tim Patillo intercepted Fresno State's Adrian Claiborne at the Buckeyes' 33-yard line. On the very next play, Hoying threw the bomb to Galloway for the change of possession quick strike that put Ohio State up 14-0.
Lorenzo Styles had a team-high 12 tackles and Jackson booted two field goals in Ohio State's first-ever meeting with the Bulldogs.
|AUG. 29||FRESNO STATE||ANAHEIM STADIUM||W, 34–10|
|SEP. 10||NO. 25 WASH.||HUSKY STADIUM||L, 16–25|
|SEP. 17||PITTSBURGH||OHIO STADIUM||W, 27–3|
|SEP. 24||HOUSTON||OHIO STADIUM||W, 52–0|
|OCT. 1||NORTHWESTERN||DYCHE STADIUM||W, 17–15|
|OCT. 8||ILLINOIS||OHIO STADIUM||L, 10–24|
|OCT. 15||MICHIGAN STATE||SPARTAN STADIUM||W, 23–7|
|OCT. 22||PURDUE||OHIO STADIUM||W, 48–14|
|OCT. 29||NO. 1 PENN STATE||BEAVER STADIUM||L, 14–63|
|NOV. 5||WISCONSIN||OHIO STADIUM||W, 24–3|
|NOV. 12||INDIANA||MEMORIAL STADIUM||W, 32–17|
|NOV. 19||NO. 15 MICHIGAN||OHIO STADIUM||W, 22–6|
|JAN. 2||NO. 6 ALABAMA||CITRUS BOWL||L, 17–24|
September 10th • #25 Washington • Husky Stadium
Napoleon Kaufman served as the main story in the eighth meeting between No. 25 Washington and No. 18 Ohio State. Washington's running back gashed the Buckeyes' defense for 211 yards and a touchdown. Kaufman averaged 6.6 yards per carry and also caught four passes for 29 yards.
The first half belonged to Washington. Jim Lambright's team racked up 236 yards of offense, forced two fumbles and led 22-0 at intermission.
George's legs and Hoying's arm almost brought Ohio State back. George scored on a 24-yard run in the third quarter and finished the day with 108 rushing yards. Hoying completed 12-of-25 passes for 208 yards, a touchdown and completed both two-point conversions in the final two quarters. His 13-yard toss to Buster Tillman made the score 25-16.
The Buckeyes recovered the onside kick, but only had 1:41 to score nine points. Five plays later, Hoying had the offense on the Washington 9-yard line facing 4th-and-goal. Cooper knew his team needed two scores, but elected to go for the touchdown instead of kicking the field goal. Hoying dropped back but was sacked to end the comeback bid.
Tillman's nine catches for 106 yards and Hoying's 288 passing yards were career bests for both players.
Ohio State fell five spots to No. 23 after the loss. Ohio State played Pittsburgh, Houston and Northwestern the next three weeks and the Buckeyes defeated the trio by a combined score of 96-18. However, the Wildcats scored late and failed on a two-point conversion with 5:01 remaining in the 17-15 Ohio State victory.
October 29th • #1 Penn State • Beaver Stadium
Following the tight game at Northwestern, Ohio State returned to Columbus and lost to Illinois 24-10 to run Cooper's record to 1–6 against the Illini. The Buckeyes then dispatched of Michigan State and Purdue before heading to Happy Valley to take on No. 1 Penn State.
Fueled by Hoying's five-touchdown performance against Purdue – a game in which he completed 20-of-24 passes for 304 yards in just over two quarters of play – the Buckeye faithful believed their 21st-ranked team had a legitimate shot at taking down the Nittany Lions.
At the end of the first quarter Ohio State trailed 7-0, but the game quickly got out of hand. Penn State scored 28 in the second period and continued to pile it on in the second half.
When the final gun fired, the Buckeyes found themselves on the wrong side of a 63-14 annihilation. Westerville native Ki-Jana Carter ran for 137 yards and four touchdowns. Kerry Collins threw for 265 yards and two touchdowns and the Nittany Lions looked every bit like the best team in the nation.
Chris Sanders and Stanley Jackson crossed the goal line in the second half for Ohio State's only scores of the game.
Following the embarrassing loss, the defense played a much better game against Wisconsin. Ohio State held the Badgers to 49 rushing yards and 203 total. Marlon Kerner had two interceptions and Greg Bellisari had an interception and two tackles for loss. Wisconsin failed to score a touchdown for the first time in 25 games as Ohio State won 24-3.
Ohio State's final game before Michigan came against Indiana. Joey Galloway scored on a 93-yard kickoff return in the first quarter and the Buckeyes led 19-17 at halftime. Neither team scored in the third quarter, but touchdowns by Rickey Dudley and Chris Sanders in the final quarter gave Ohio State a 32-17 victory.
George rushed for 118 yards – the eighth time he gained over 100 yards in 1994 – and two touchdowns.
November 19th • #15 Michigan • Ohio Stadium
For years Cooper felt the heat for his inability to defeat Michigan. Many believed that if his No. 22 Buckeyes did not defeat No. 15 Michigan on this unseasonably warm 60-degree November Saturday, he would not be on the sidelines in 1995.
The Wolverines received the ball and drove into scoring position. Gary Moeller decided to gamble on 4th-and-1 from the 21, but Todd Collins' pass to Che Foster fell short and Ohio State took over.
Ohio State downed Scott Terna's first punt of the game at the Wolverines' 1-yard line. Three plays later, Collins stumbled into the end zone on a drop back which resulted in a safety.
Shawn Springs received the free kick and returned it 21 yards to the Michigan 40. A nice mix of runs and passes led to a short middle pass to Nicky Sualua. The powerful fullback caught the ball and rumbled 21 yards down to the Wolverines' 5-yard line. On 3rd-and-goal, Hoying scrambled for the game's first touchdown and Ohio State led 9-0.
Michigan's next drive ended in a three-and-out and the Buckeyes offense again went to work. After 13 plays and 64 yards, the Scarlet and Gray face a 4th-and-goal from the 8. Josh Jackson made the 25-yard field goal to extend the lead to 12-0.
The Wolverines kicked a field goal late in the second quarter and trailed 12-3 at halftime.
Although his team had the lead, Cooper was not pleased and wanted more from his players. His halftime speech according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer:
Years from now, when time has fermented the Buckeyes' 22-6 victory and distilled it into a single memory, Cooper's halftime haymaker at his locker room blackboard might outlive anything that transpired in the old horseshoe.
"That got a real spark under us," offensive tackle Korey Stringer said. "Coach Cooper came in, and he was as excited as I've ever seen him. He was so fired up, the next thing you know, he hauled off and knocked the blackboard out. He put a good dent in it, too."
That move, as out of character for the mild-mannered Cooper as the victory was to his previous 0-5-1 record as OSU coach against the Wolverines, lent further urgency to Ohio State's first victory in the series since 1987.
"That really showed us how much he wanted to pull out the victory," OSU tailback Eddie George said. "He's usually laid back and calm. He's not usually into emotional speeches, but that definitely pumped us up."
Michigan scored the only the only points of the third quarter and trailed 12-6 heading into the final 15 minutes. Three plays into the fourth quarter, Remy Hamilton came out to attempt a 32-yard field goal. Marlon Kerner blocked Hamilton's kick and the Buckeyes returned it to the Wolverines' 47.
Ohio State capitalized with a 36-yard Jackson field goal and took a 15-6 lead. Michigan's next possession ended on the first play when Luke Fickell intercepted Collins' pass at the Buckeyes' 22. George got five carries and scored the final points of the game in the Buckeyes' 22-6 victory.
During the post game press conference, Cooper exclaimed: "It doesn't get any better than this. It ranks No. 1. The Rose Bowl (at Arizona State) was a great win over Michigan, but with all the criticism we've faced from the media it feels great."
January 2nd • #6 Alabama • Citrus Bowl
Alabama and Ohio State met for only the third time ever in the Citrus Bowl. The two titans of college football put on a great game that wasn't over until a last-second pass to the end zone fell incomplete.
From the 1995 Ohio State Media Guide:
OSU took a 17-14 lead on a 34-yard field goal by Josh Jackson with 8:41 to play, but Bama answered with a 24-yard three-pointer to tie things up at the 4:29 mark.
After an OSU punt, the Crimson Tide marched 63 yards in three plays for the game winner – a 50-yard swing pass from Jay Barker to tailback Sherman Williams with 42 seconds left.
The OSU defense recovered three fumbles, blocked two kicks and recorded 12 tackles for loss. Bob Hoying, who threw TD passes of 69 and 11 yards to split end Joey Galloway in the first half, was sacked five times in the second half as OSU was held to 103 yards after intermission.
Sophomore end Matt Finkes, who blocked a field goal and had five tackles including three for losses for OSU, was chosen as the game's defensive MVP.
Shreman Williams finished the contest with 164 rushing yards and 155 receiving yards. He was the difference in Alabama's 24-17 victory.
Joey Galloway caught eight passes for 146 yards and two touchdowns in his final game for No. 13 Ohio State.
The last time the Buckeyes finished a season with wins over Michigan and a bowl opponent came in 1982.
- Joey Galloway had two touchdowns in No. 20 Ohio State's 34-10 win over Fresno State in the Disneyland Pigskin Classic played on a Monday night.
- No. 25 Washington rode Napoleon Kaufman to a 25-16 victory in Seattle.
- Mike Vrabel had four of the defense's 12 tackles for loss in the 27-3 defeat of Pittsburgh. The offense gained 512 yards with 295 coming from the ground attack.
- Houston played No. 20 Ohio State for the first time and lost 52-0.
- Northwestern led 9-0 at halftime, but the Buckeyes scored 17 unanswered in the third quarter for a 17-15 victory. Eddie George ran for 206 yards and a touchdown.
- Seventeen points scored by Illinois in the second half was enough to defeat Ohio State 24-10.
- Eddie George became the first Buckeye running back to rush for over 200 yards twice in the same season. He gained 219 yards in the 23-7 win over Michigan State.
- Bobby Hoying threw for 304 yards and tied an Ohio State record with five touchdown passes as the Buckeyes beat Purdue 48-14. Joey Galloway caught three touchdown passes.
- No. 1 Penn State hung 63 points on OSU in a 63-14 rout. Only Michigan (86 in 1902) and Wooster (64 in 1890) have scored more against the Scarlet and Gray.
- Chris Sanders had touchdown catches of 78 and 15 yards in the 24-3 win over Wisconsin.
- Joey Galloway had a 93-yard kickoff return for a touchdown and Ohio State defeated Indiana 32-17 in Bloomington.
- A Marlon Kerner blocked kick and a Luke Fickell interception were key in John Cooper's first win over Michigan as head coach of the Buckeyes. The Wolverines did not score a touchdown for the first time in 111 games.
- Sherman Williams' 50-yard touchdown catch pushed Alabama to a 24-17 victory over Ohio State. Joey Galloway had 146 yards and two touchdowns in his final collegiate game.
- Korey Stringer was named an All-American for the second consecutive year.
- Joey Galloway, Korey Stringer, Craig Powell, Chris Sanders, Marlon Kerner, Lorenzo Styles, Preston Harrison and Tito Paul were selected in the NFL Draft.
- Ohio State started the season ranked 20th, rose as high as No. 13 but finished 14th.
John Cooper finally defeated Michigan, and the 22-6 victory likely saved his job. He survived his first seven years and now had a stockpile of talent for the future. A Rose Bowl became the expectation for the 1995 team that figured to be loaded on offense and defense.
Eddie George led the team in rushing (1,442) and was second in scoring with 72 points. Bobby Hoying threw for 2,335 yards and 19 touchdowns. Orlando Pace was named the Big Ten's Freshman of the Year.
Joey Galloway had a team-high 44 catches and 669 receiving yards. He finished his career second on Ohio State's all-time touchdown receptions list.
Mike Vrabel and Matt Finkes combined for 23 sacks and 40 tackles for loss. Vrabel's 12 sacks set a school record. Lorenzo Styles led the team with 132 tackles.