(Video courtesy ElevenWarriors)
What more can you ask than undefeated? Coach Urban Meyer led the Buckeyes to a 12-0 record and a No. 3 ranking in the Associated Press poll. Not bad for his first season on the job.
Meyer inherited a talented but lackadaisical defense and a collection of highly recruited players on offense that had failed to live up to expectations. All he did was put his stamp on both sides of the ball and made everyone around the Big Ten and across the country forget about a disastrous 6-7 season last year that saw former coach Jim Tressel resign amid a host of NCAA allegations.
Ohio State finished the season ranked 10th in rushing offense (242.3 yards per game) and 19th in scoring (37.2 points per game). On defense, it was 32nd in scoring (22.8 points per game allowed) and 36th in total yards allowed (359.6).
And even with no postseason bowl or championship game due to NCAA sanctions, the Buckeyes managed to win the Leaders Division crown and are poised to build upon their success.
But most importantly, Meyer beat rival Michigan, 26-21 in The Game to cap the perfect season. The Buckeyes also posted three top-20 wins -- at Michigan State, Nebraska and against the Wolverines.
The undefeated season is the sixth for the program in 123 years.
Meyer is the second-winningest active Football Bowl Subdivision coach at 116-23 and is 24-7 against top-25 teams and 22-3 in rivalry games.
Honorable mention: You can't overlook the impact of Penn State first-year coach Bill O'Brien. The former New England Patriots offense coordinator was panned by fans and alumni as the choice to replace the legendary and polarizing Joe Paterno, but he was the perfect fit for the Nittany Lions.
Despite losing RB Silas Redd to Southern Cal and WR Justin Brown to Oklahoma, O'Brien turned former walk-on QB Matt McGloin into the leading passer in the Big Ten.
Penn State finished 8-4 but was arguably two plays from 10-2 with non-stop controversy and uncertainty following the program.
Only a perfect performance by Meyer was better.
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