COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Troy Smith threw two touchdown passes in
his first start and Tony Pittman ran for 144 yards to lead Ohio
State to a 30-7 win over Indiana on Saturday, ending the Buckeyes'
three-game losing skid.
Ohio State (4-3, 1-3) avoided its first 0-4 record in the Big
Ten since 1922.
With starting tailback Lydell Ross serving a one-game
suspension, Pittman carried 20 times and had a 28-yard touchdown
late in the game. The Buckeyes had 282 rushing yards, almost as
many as they had in their four previous games (287).
Ohio State had 443 total yards, more than in its last two games
Indiana (2-5, 0-4) lost its fifth game in a row overall and 12th
straight to Ohio State.
Smith, who didn't play in three of the last four games,
completed 12 of 24 passes for 161 yards without an interception and
ran for 58 yards on 11 carries. He had been stuck on the bench
behind fellow sophomore Justin Zwick, who struggled all season
before sustaining a slightly separated shoulder at Iowa.
The Buckeyes had scored two touchdowns on their last 29
possessions before scoring the first four times they got the ball
Six plays after taking the opening kickoff, Smith threw a pass
into the right flat that cornerback Buster Larkins could have
intercepted. Instead, the ball tipped off his hands and bounced to
Ted Ginn Jr., a former high school teammate of Smith's in
Cleveland. Ginn broke four tackles in a zigzagging sprint to the
end zone to complete a 59-yard play.
On the play before the touchdown, Pittman fumbled the ball away
to the Hoosiers. After consulting with Big Ten video review
officials in the press box, officials ruled Pittman was down before
the ball popped loose and returned possession to the Buckeyes.
After a punt by Indiana, which managed just 242 yards, Smith led
an 85-yard drive that included runs of 28 and 11 yards by Pittman.
On third and goal from the Indiana 5, Smith hit Santonio Holmes in
the corner of the end zone to make it 14-0.
Mike Nugent kicked field goals of 29 and 52 yards on the next
two Ohio State possessions and later added a 35-yard field goal.
Indiana drew as close as 14-7 on Matt LoVecchio's keeper late in
the first quarter. LoVecchio hit on 14 of 25 passes for 156 yards
with one interception.