Ohio State dominated Clemson in the Sugar Bowl as Justin Fields and the Buckeye playmakers got one over on Trevor Lawrence.
Just when it looked like college football fans might get a truly competitive College Football Playoff semifinal, Ohio State turned up intent on making a statement.
The Buckeyes were underdogs and doubted with just six games on their record. Clemson head coach Dabo Sweeney didn’t even name Ohio State in the Top 10 of his coaches’ poll ballot.
None of that mattered when the ball was kicked off because Ohio State won 49-28 in a dominating performance from Justin Fields and the Buckeyes.
Justin Fields is one tough dude
The story of the night was Fields and his epic performance. He tossed six touchdowns and 385 yards while completing 22-of-28 passes. Yep, he had as many incompletions as he had touchdowns. Most impressively, Fields did that despite taking a crushing blow to the ribs in the first half and playing through injury. That’s an outing to remember.
Trevor Lawrence couldn’t do it alone
Trevor Lawrence came in with top billing among the quarterbacks, but he was second-best on the night. He had two touchdowns and 400 yards passing, but he wasn’t able to match Fields. To be fair to Lawrence, he dealt with pressure in his face for much of the night. Any quarterback would have had a tough time making a difference under those circumstances.
Ohio State really did belong
Criticism of Ohio State’s six-game season was valid, but the CFP committee was proven right to include them in the Final Four. The Big Ten was also proven right to change their rules to make sure Ohio State had a shot to compete as the conference champion. All the Buckeyes needed was a chance. They left no doubt.
Who needs Master Teague when you’ve got Trey Sermon?
You’d think missing running back, Master Teague would have hurt the Buckeyes. Clearly, it wasn’t an issue. Trey Sermon had a statement game against Northwestern with 331 yards and two touchdowns. He picked up where he left off in the Sugar Bowl, rushing for 193 yards and a touchdown on Clemson’s defense.
Ryan Day is not just some guy
It’s time to put some respect on Ryan Day’s name. He led his team through a difficult season full of potential pitfalls. He kept his squad undefeated. Then he outcoached Dabo Sweeney in the Sugar Bowl. Day isn’t riding on Urban Meyer’s coattails. He’s proving himself as an elite head coach himself.