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5 Reasons Why the Ohio State Buckeyes Beat the Penn State Nittany Lions

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5 Biggest Factors That Contributed to Ohio State's Win Over Penn State

Greg Bartram - USA Today Sports

There are plenty of reasons why the Ohio State Buckeyes beat the Penn State Nittany Lions on Saturday.

It was such a dominating performance from the Buckeyes that it’s easy to replay the game in your head and figure out where Penn State struggled and Ohio State excelled.

The fact that the game was a night game in Ohio Stadium with a crowd of 105,889 that were predominantly Ohio State fans was an advantage for the Buckeyes. I think the same thing would’ve happened in State College, though it may not have been as dominating of a performance playing in front of that many Penn State fans. It still would’ve been a win for the Buckeyes nonetheless.

The Ohio State defense wanted to make up for their disappointing performance against the Iowa Hawkeyes last week, and they did just that. Was their performance against the Penn State offense enough to be a factor in their big win? Who had the biggest influence on the Ohio State defense?

The explosive offense of the Buckeyes is always a factor in their wins, but who excelled the most and had the most influence in their dominating win?

Finally, what mistakes did Penn State make that greatly helped Ohio State and caused them to lose the game?

There are so many factors that contributed to Ohio State’s win that I’ve had to group some of them together based on which player had the most influence in each area.

The bottom line is Ohio State was impressive all around, and Buckeye fans have to hope that they continue to play like this. They looked like the championship-caliber team they are. They made a statement to everyone that they deserve their top five rankings in every poll, but despite this big win they are still stuck at No. 4 in the BCS rankings. They will need to continue with these impressive wins, but they will also need some help from the teams ranked above them in the BCS to get to the national title game.

Jenna Aquino is a Big Ten Football writer for Follow her on Twitter, "Like" her on Facebook, or add her to your network on Google.

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5. Penn State’s turnovers

Greg Bartram - USA Today Sports

Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg threw two interceptions in this game, one of which led to an Ohio State touchdown. They had a couple of fumbles and one was recovered by the Buckeyes. These three turnovers gave them even more of a disadvantage against the Buckeyes. The noise of the crowd and the pressure from the Ohio State defense caused the turnovers. Ohio State defensive end Noah Spence would not leave Hackenberg alone.

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4. Penn State’s defense

Greg Bartram - USA Today Sports

The Penn State defense is slow and has trouble covering a spread offense. Ohio State knew this and seemed to concentrate most of their offensive plays to the outside. I think the Penn State defense would’ve had trouble stopping the Ohio State offense no matter what because the Buckeyes are just too quick for them.

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3. Noah Spence/Ohio State’s improvement on defense

Trevor Ruszkowski - USA Today Sports

The Ohio State defense more than made up for their disappointing performance against Iowa last week and proved how good they really are. There was question whether or not they had any type of pass rush, but defensive end Noah Spence helped prove that they do. As I mentioned before, he would not leave Hackenberg alone and was in the backfield pressuring him on almost every play. The Penn State offensive line had trouble blocking him, which resulted in two sacks, a tackle for loss, and a forced fumble. The continued pressure on Hackenberg caused him to throw two interceptions, and the Ohio State defense only allowed Penn State 14 points and a total of 357 yards.

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2. Carlos Hyde/Ohio State running game

Greg Bartram - USA Today Sports

As usual, running back Carlos Hyde was the workhorse of the Ohio State running game as he ran for 147 yards and two touchdowns. Fellow running backs Jordan Hall and Dontre Wilson got some playing time too, but the previously injured Hall ran for 81 yards of his own. Quarterback Braxton Miller is always a part of this running game as well. There is a great advantage to having a mobile quarterback as he contributed 68 rushing yards and two touchdowns.

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1. Braxton Miller/Ohio State passing game

Greg Bartram - USA Today Sports

Miller’s passing game is getting better and better. He was 18-for-24 passing with a career-high 252 yards and three touchdowns. What’s even more impressive is that he achieved these stats in less than three quarters. Ohio State was so far ahead that head coach Urban Meyer put in his second string in the third quarter, which included backup quarterback Kenny Guiton who came in and rushed for two touchdowns.

Receivers Devin Smith and Corey “Philly” Brown made contributions of their own. Smith had five receptions for 90 yards and Brown had four receptions for 67 yards and a touchdown.

The Ohio State offense had 686 total yards, which included 408 yards rushing.