BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Call it Late Night With Urban Meyer. And call it win No. 8 for Ohio State.
OSU (8-0, 3-0 Big Ten) held off surprisingly persistent Indiana 52-49 on Saturday night in a football game so long it could have been an American League baseball game.
Quarterback Braxton Miller rushed for 151 yards and a touchdown and passed for 211 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Buckeyes. Running back Carlos Hyde had a career game, rushing for 156 yards and two touchdowns.
Indiana (2-4, 0-3 Big Ten) did not go as quietly as most Indiana teams have in the last quarter-century against Ohio State.
The Buckeyes led for almost the whole game except for a few minutes in the first half. But they never could quite run IU out of its own stadium, as most people expected them to do.
OSU went up 31-17 early in the third quarter on a 67-yard touchdown run by Miller, but Indiana answered with a score of its own. The Buckeyes pushed the lead back to 14 points at 38-24, then to it to 18 points, 45-27, on a 1-yard touchdown run by Hyde in the first minute of the fourth quarter.
Indiana still had an answer, though, when it marched 76 yards and got a 1-yard touchdown run from D'Angelo Roberts with 10:30 left in the game.
Ohio State answered right back with a 6-play, 75-yard drive that ended with Miller hitting Devin Smith for a 46-yard touchdown pass on which the sophomore receiver made three Indiana tacklers miss to make it 52-34.
But Indiana wasn't through, scoring twice in the final minutes.
Ohio State got off to the fast start it was looking for when it took a 10-0 lead in the game's first 12 minutes.
But Indiana, which had been outgained 112 yards to 6 yards when OSU came out of the starting blocks fast, scored on back-to-back possessions to go out front 14-10 in the first minute of the second quarter.
What was most unnerving about the Hoosiers' comeback was that they made OSU look bad in doing it.
OSU built its early lead on a 12-yard touchdown run by Cory Brown and a 35-yard field goal by Drew Basil, only his third of the season.
But three plays after Basil's kick, IU's Stephen Houston went 59 yards untouched through Ohio State's defense for a touchdown that cut the lead to 10-7.
Then on OSU's next possession, Ben Buchanan's punt was blocked by Indiana's Isaiah Roundtree and recovered at the Buckeyes' 16-yard line. Two plays later, Houston sprinted seven yards untouched again to put the Hoosiers up 14-10.
It was the fifth punt Buchanan has had blocked in his three seasons as Ohio State's punter.
After Basil missed a 35-yard field goal, Ohio State's punt block team took the momentum back from Indiana when Travis Howard blocked a punt and Bradley Roby recovered it in the end zone. It was his third touchdown of the season one on an interception, one when he recovered a high snap on a punt in the end zone and Saturday night's score.
The lead grew to 24-14 at halftime when Miller hooked up with his favorite deep ball target, Smith, for a 60-yard touchdown pass with 2:31 left in the first half.