The Ohio State Buckeyes need to have a successful running game against a good Iowa Hawkeyes defense. This is easier said than done, as the Hawkeyes’ defense has not given up a rushing touchdown all season. They are the only team left in the FBS that can claim that.
Ohio State is looking to end that streak for the Hawkeyes on Saturday afternoon, and they have a good chance to do so. Iowa’s defense is good, especially against the run, but Ohio State’s running game is good too. The Buckeyes have a tendency to rely more on the run this season, especially with a mobile quarterback like Braxton Miller and a workhorse running back in Carlos Hyde.
Even a great defense like the Wisconsin Badgers have could not stop Ohio State’s running game. They allowed the Buckeyes 192 rushing yards when they played them in Columbus on September 28. This is also a Badgers defense that just plain dominated the Northwestern Wildcats and held their dual quarterback offense to 44 rushing yards last week.
Ohio State’s running game is just that good. The Buckeyes are ranked No. 11 in the nation in rushing offense with 280.7 rushing yards per game. They have relied more on the run all season with 46 rushing attempts per game, and they’ve also scored 17 rushing touchdowns in six games this season.
They must continue to do what they’ve been doing all season to be successful against Iowa’s rushing defense. The Hawkeyes’ rushing defense is eighth in the nation, only allowing 88.5 yards per game. They are also tied for 12th in scoring defense by allowing just 16.8 points per game.
Ohio State has had their work cut out for them in practice trying to figure out a way to run against the Iowa defense, but they have enough offensive weapons that are a threat to run that they should be successful. Miller, Hyde, Dontre Wilson, and even Jordan Hall when he’s healthy can be dangerous on the ground when given the opportunity.
Iowa’s defense hasn’t seen a rushing offense like Ohio State’s yet. Their streak of giving up no rushing touchdowns this season is sure to end on Saturday.