PISCATAWAY, N.J. (AP) — C.J. Stroud threw for 330 yards and a career-high five touchdowns after sitting out a game to rest his shoulder and No. 11 Ohio State won its 20th straight Big Ten game with a 52-13 victory over Rutgers on Saturday.
Stroud connected with Chris Olave on touchdown passes of 56 and 11 yards, found Garrett Wilson on a 32-yard catch and run and hit tight ends Jeremy Ruckert and Mitch Rossi on scoring passes of 19 and 1 yard, respectively. The freshman, who threw four TD passes against Minnesota in the opener, finished 17 of 23 and did not throw an interception. Olave finished with five catches for a team-high 119 yards.
Ohio State (4-1, 2-0) has beaten Rutgers (3-2, 0-2) eight times in as many games. The Buckeyes outgained the Scarlet Knights 541-346, flowed through a defense that had give up 54 points in its first four games and intercepted Noah Vedral three times.
Freshman TreVeyon Henderson opened the scoring with a 44-yard touchdown run on the Buckeys’ second play from scrimmage. Freshman Denzel Burke scored on a 23-yard interception return 40 seconds later and the rout was on.
The Buckeyes extended the lead to 24-0 on a 23-yard field goal by Noah Ruggles and the Wilson TD catch with 2:34 left in the opening quarter.
Rutgers’ only major play in the game was a 75-yard catch and run by Aron Cruickshank on a short pass over the middle on the next series. The distance was a career best for both players. Vedral finished 16 of 26 for 152 yards.
Cole Snyder added a 12-yard touchdown pass to Josh Youngblood with 7:40 to play to close out the scoring and close the yardage gap for the Scarlet Knights.
The result was a major letdown for Rutgers following a 20-13 loss to No. 14 Michigan on the road last weekend. They played very well in that game. They didn’t follow that up this week and coach Greg Schiano contributed to the problem on the opening series, using a trick play on a punt that backfired, giving the Buckeyes a short field.
Ohio State has never scored fewer than 49 points against Rutgers.
Ohio State: This team can do it all, especially on offense with Stroud throwing the ball to a trio of top wide outs and Henderson running through huge holes. The defense might have played its best game this season, giving up one play early.
Rutgers: While it has made up little ground on Michigan, Michigan State, and Penn State since Schiano returned last year, it remains light years behind Ohio State in the Big Ten pecking order. They were seriously outplayed in all phases of the game, and certainly outcoached. Schiano’s decision to throw a pass on fourth-and-8 from its own 46 put Rutgers in a hole is never left.
Ohio State: The Buckeyes were outstanding on both sides of the ball. Expect for one long TD in the opening half it was a near perfect performance. If anyone losses or plays a poor game they are back in the Top 10.
Rutgers: The Scarlet Knights were hoping to follow a strong showing in a loss against Michigan with a good game against the Buckeyes. The hope was a upset would get them a first spot in the poll since 2012. Obviously, they have a long way to go.
Ohio State: Hosts Maryland on Saturday.
Rutgers: Hosts No. 17 Michigan State on Saturday.
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