Another loss at the horseshoe for the Gophers

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A good half doesn't lead to a full win

Gophers hang around, but fall at Ohio State 30-14

October 14, 2018 - 7:42 am

   COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - All of No. 3 Ohio State's strengths and weaknesses were on full display in a win over the persistent Golden Gophers.

   Dwayne Haskins and the passing game continue to be tip-top. Ohio State's receivers get open and vacuum in anything thrown near them. K.J. Hill's grab and run for a touchdown in the first half was the best catch of the season, so far.

   Hill caught another TD pass in the fourth quarter to seal the 30-14 win over Minnesota (3-3, 0-3 Big Ten) on Saturday.

   The bad news for the Buckeyes (7-0, 4-0) is that for another week they couldn't get either of their two elite running backs loose. J.K. Dobbins and Mike Weber combined for 3.7 yards per carry after managing just 3.2 last week against Indiana. Neither had a single carry over 11 yards.

   And the Ohio State defense is still giving up chunks of yardage against heavy underdogs. Mohamed Ibrahim broke runs of 25 and 34 yards in the first half on his way to a career-high 157 yards and two touchdowns.

   The passing game is one of the only things working consistently for the Buckeyes right now, and they had to ride it again.

   "We're going to have to get some things fixed," Ohio State coach Meyer said.

   ABOUT THAT CATCH

   Hill caught a career-high nine passes for 187 yards and two touchdowns. But everyone will be talking about the turn-around, one-handed catch he made in the second quarter with Minnesota leading 14-10.

   Hill's celebration afterward included him acting as if his hand was so sticky that he couldn't pry the ball loose.

   "He made a crazy play," Haskins said. "Of course, K.J. is a little character. He was pretty hyped up. He had a career day today."

   Hill said he and fellow receiver Johnnie Dixon watched the catch on a phone at halftime.

   "Definitely a 10," Hill said. "On the biggest stage in front of the home crowd and just hearing the crowd excited, it was amazing."

   THE TAKEAWAY:

   The Gophers hurt themselves with three turnovers, two of which led to 10 points for the Buckeyes, and two missed field goals. True freshman walk-on quarterback Zack Annexstad threw two interceptions, but also flashed some potential.

   The Golden Gophers piled up 396 yards and bested Ohio State in yards per pass completion (16.8 to 12.5) and yards per play (7.1 to 6.6)

   "I love coaching that team," Fleck said. "I'm proud of how hard they played."

   UP NEXT

   The Gophers are on the road again on Saturday to play Nebraska, which is off to the worst start in program history at 0-6.