Ohio State flashes national title credentials as offense explodes in drubbing of Michigan State

COLUMBUS, Ohio — If you didn’t pay attention to the jokes here, you weren’t paying attention. They went something like this:

Mel Tucker should have signed his reported $95 million contract at halftime. For a while, it seemed like Ohio State would score 95 … million against Michigan State. The International Space Station was closer to Columbus than the Spartans.

That’s the level of snark that bubbles up when a playoff elimination game becomes a joke itself. No. 4 Ohio State did what Baker Mayfield tried and failed to do a few years back to Ohio Stadium’s artificial turf — plant a flag in the ground. This one was metaphorical, though it still waves loud and proud while containing the proclamation that the Buckeyes look like the best of everything. Well, at least in the Big Ten, but perhaps in all of college football, too.

It’s getting late in the season, and conclusions must be made. Admit it, you want to see Ohio State against No. 1 Georgia right now. After a 56-7 trucking of No. 7 Michigan State and their soon-to-be-overpaid coach, the Buckeyes have the best combination of skill, speed, strategy and athletes to give the Bulldogs a game.

Tucker may eventually sign that historic 10-year deal reported during the week. Ohio State had the receipts on Saturday.

“This is more than just about winning the game,” Ohio State coach Ryan Day told CBS Sports prior to kickoff.

Buckeyes everywhere have been waiting for this sort of performance all season. The lone loss to now-No. 3 Oregon is more than two months old but has become a signpost of how deficient the Buckeyes were that day and how dangerous they are now.

Ohio State was so dominant Saturday it scored on its first seven possessions. Quarterback C.J. Stroud threw touchdown…


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