As the No. 3-ranked Ohio State football team (10-0, 6-0) prepares to try and break the OSU record for consecutive wins, the Buckeye seniors are getting ready for their final game at Ohio Stadium as players.
For most seniors like redshirt-senior safety C.J. Barnett, Saturday will be a memorable game, but the pre-game ceremonies aren’t what they’re focused on most.
“We’ll get through the emotions together, but we’ve got a job to do, (to) go out there and try to beat Indiana,” Barnett said.
Barnett said playing his final home game makes him think back over all the accomplishments he and his classmates have achieved in Columbus.
“I’ll probably be a little emotional. I can remember the first time I ran out there against Navy in 2009,” Barnett said. “We have had ups and down, but I do think we’re finishing strong.”
Redshirt-senior right guard Marcus Hall said Wednesday he’s not ready to start thinking about what will be going through his head Saturday against Indiana (4-6, 2-4), but he will definitely miss his time at Ohio State.
“I just really don’t want to see it come to an end,” Hall said. “But you know what they say, all good things come to an end.”
Coach Urban Meyer said redshirt-junior cornerback Bradley Roby will participate in the senior ceremonies, as the two have already discussed his plans for next year. Meyer said four years is all he expects his players to commit to the program, adding Roby is on track to earn his degree in the spring.
“(Four years) is all you ask, you don’t ask for five years nowadays.”
Meyer said not all senior classes are good and deserve the praise this class will receive before the game.
“It’s not because they’re seniors, it’s because what they’ve done,” Meyer said.
Junior linebacker Ryan Shazier, who might forgo his senior season after a very successful campaign in his third year, said he has not made a decision regarding next year at this time.
“I just want to help (the seniors) leave with a bang,” Shazier said. “I’m not even thinking about (the NFL Draft) right now, I’m thinking about Indiana.”
With a win Saturday, OSU will clinch the Big Ten Leaders division title and punch its ticket to the Big Ten Championship Game. Meyer said being in the title hunt mid-November, both in the Big Ten and the BCS, is what attracted him to OSU two winters ago.
“That’s why you come to Ohio State as a coach or a player,” Meyer said.
Junior quarterback Braxton Miller said the state of the BCS, which has No. 3 OSU ahead of No. 4 Baylor by .0013, isn’t something his team can afford to focus on out on the field.
“It’s not in our hands, but a couple things are in our hands,” Miller said. “We can go out there and dominate who we’re playing.”
OSU and Indiana are set for a 3:30 p.m. kickoff Saturday in Ohio Stadium.