In the end, the matchup between the two top college teams in the country wasn’t much of a contest at all:
AUSTIN, Sept. 9 — Before the Longhorn band played a somber “Eyes of Texas,” Ohio State offensive lineman Kirk Barton ran to the sliver of the stadium filled with Buckeyes fans and flashed the Hook ‘em Horns sign with both hands aimed down. The message was clear: Ohio State showed the defending national champions who’s No. 1.
In the first regular season matchup of No. 1 vs. No. 2 in a decade, quarterback Troy Smith riddled Texas for 269 yards passing and two touchdowns, leading the Buckeyes to a 24-7 win on Saturday night.
The victory kept the Buckeyes (2-0) in perfect position for a run to a national title. Keep winning and they should stay right where they are.
After the game, Buckeyes players charged toward their section of 4,000 or so fans tucked in a sea of burnt orange, alternately signing Horns Down and No. 1.
“We haven’t claimed anything yet,” Ohio State Coach Jim Tressel said. “We still have to go back to the Horseshoe and keep winning games.
Still, the Buckeyes were having a heck of a party on the way into their locker room.
“We came in here and beat the No. 2 team in the country and the defending national champion in front of their home crowd,” Buckeyes defensive end Vernon Gholston said. “We showed everybody what we can do.”
And what they did was really quite impressive. Even that one touchdown that Texas scored came after a personal foul call that seemed, from my perspective, to be questionable call. It’s still a long season to go, but the Buckeyes have proven early that they deserve that #1 ranking.