Ohio State's Demolition of Nebraska Improves Its Home Night Game Record to 15-4 Overall

By Vico on November 6, 2016 at 8:00 am
Raekwon McMillan and teammates prepare to take the field against Nebraska in 2016.

Ohio State loves the bright lights of Ohio Stadium at night. The record shows it too. Ohio State's 62-3 annihilation of Nebraska improved its record to 15-4 in all games played at Ohio Stadium that kicked off at 7:45 p.m. or later.

Ohio State in Home Night Games, All-Time
Year OSU Rank Opponent Date Result
1985 No. 9 Pittsburgh Sept. 14 W, 10-7
1993 No. 16 No. 12 Washington Sept. 11 W, 21-12
1997 No. 9 Wyoming Aug. 28 W, 24-10
1999 No. 13 No. 14 UCLA Sept. 11 W, 42-20
2001   No. 14 Northwestern Oct. 6 W, 38-20
2003 No. 2 No. 17 Washington Aug. 30 W, 28-9
2005 No. 4 No. 2 Texas Sept. 10 L, 22-25
2008 No. 10 No. 3 Penn State Oct. 25 L, 6-13
2009 No. 8 No. 3 USC Sept. 12 L, 15-18
2010 No. 2 Marshall Sept. 2 W, 45-7
2011   No. 12 Wisconsin Oct. 29 W, 33-29
2012 No. 12 No. 21 Nebraska Oct. 6 W, 63-38
2013 No. 4 No. 23 Wisconsin Oct. 5 W, 31-24
2013 No. 4 Penn State Oct. 26 W, 63-14
2014 No. 8 Virginia Tech Sept. 6 L, 21-35
2014 No. 13 Illinois Nov. 1 W, 55-14
2015 No. 1 Penn State Oct. 17 W, 38-10
2015 No. 1 Minnesota Nov. 7 W, 28-14
2016 No. 6 No. 9 Nebraska Nov. 5 W, 62-3

Long-time fans will know that night games are a relatively new addition to Ohio State football. The first night game came in 1985. The No. 9 Ohio State Buckeyes hosted Pittsburgh for a game televised on TBS. This was a huge deal at the time. The game itself was a slugfest that Ohio State won in the final minute with a Jim Karsatos touchdown pass to Cris Carter.

Ohio State waited eight more years before hosting another team under the lights. It was a big one too. The No. 16 Buckeyes hosted No. 12 Washington. The Huskies had won three-straight Pac-10 championships and played in the last three Rose Bowls, winning two. Don James however had resigned before the season started in protest of how Washington's administration handled allegations of NCAA infractions. Without Don James on the other sideline, Ohio State turned the contest into arguably the first major win of the John Cooper era.

Ohio Stadium began to host more night games later into the 1990s. It started its 1997 season with a night game against Wyoming. No. 13 Ohio State hosted No. 14 UCLA in a matchup between the Sugar Bowl champions and the Rose Bowl runner-up. The game that emerged was a rout for Ohio State, though neither team would play to the previous year's billing in 1999.

Unranked Ohio State added an 18-point win over No. 14 Northwestern in the next Ohio Stadium night game. This was a major upset for Ohio State in Jim Tressel's first year since Northwestern was the pre-season pick to win the Big Ten that year. The gods were unkind to Ohio State thereafter. Ohio State lost its next three home night games, all in heartbreaking fashion. The losses to Texas and USC still sting. That loss to Penn State resulted in a t-shirt you might see some Nittany Lions fans wear for your next trip to State College.

Ohio State has been almost flawless since, starting with the 45-7 win over Marshall to open the 2010 season. The only blemish is the Virginia Tech loss in 2014. Yet, Ohio State won a national championship that year and the Hokies got their comeuppance in their place to start the 2015 season. The loss barely registers in hindsight. Ohio State's 62-3 win over Nebraska constitutes four-straight night home game wins, as well as nine of the next 10.

We're already looking forward to the next entry to this list in 2017.

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