J.K. Dobbins is a freshman. Just check his papers.

Now check his stats. Three games in, the rookie from La Grange, Texas, has rushed for 425 yards. Some 172 of that came Saturday in Ohio State’s 38-7 win over Army, and 52 came on just one play, the play — the home run — that coach Urban Meyer had been waiting to see from Dobbins.

“He's a perfect tailback,” Meyer declared after the win. “He's a space player that we need.”

He’s not going to forget about sophomore Mike Weber, whose sequel to his 1,000-yard rushing season last year has been late to start after he fought through a strained hamstring through the preseason.

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That injury meant Dobbins got the start in the opener at Indiana, when he rushed for 181 yards. That earned him the start against Oklahoma, in which he only had 13 carries for 72 yards. But he built upon it against Army on just 13 carries.

It was his first two carries of the second half that broke open the game and gave Ohio State a 24-7 lead. Dobbins went 22 yards on the first and 52 to the end zone on the second, getting blocks from left tackle Jamarco Jones and many of the rest of the gang while making the safety whiff.

“My O-line, my receivers, tight end — outstanding job of blocking,” Dobbins said. “I saw my teammates were blocking very well for me (on the TD run), and I just had to beat one person. I kind of pride myself on beating the first person who gets there. And so it was off to the races after that.”


J.T. Barrett has never been someone consumed with personal achievements. So it’s not a surprise that he took breaking Drew Brees’ Big Ten record for total touchdowns passing and running in stride.

Barrett’s 9-yard touchdown pass to Austin Mack gave him 107 career touchdowns.

“Coming from Wichita Falls (Texas), a little city on the map, I just wanted to come here and win a lot of football games and be around a lot of great people doing it,” the fifth-year senior said. “It’s a tremendous honor. It’s a credit to all the people involved (around me).”

Barrett has faced criticism because of Ohio State’s shaky passing game, but his teammates are steadfastly behind him.

“We have 100 percent faith in J.T., no matter what,” junior Parris Campbell said. “We will always have faith in him. To me, J.T. is the best quarterback in college football.”

Added Meyer, “To say you're the No. 1 touchdown maker in the history of the Big Ten Conference, that's awesome. That's going to be a hard one to break. He's got a lot of games left. Much credit to him and I appreciate him.”

No surprise defense

The Buckeyes sprang what in essence was a 4-2-5 defense on Army, but it didn’t catch the Black Knights by surprise.

Army coach Jeff Monken said they expected as much, knowing Buckeyes defensive coordinator Greg Schiano went against the option-running service academies many times while coach at Rutgers.

“It's the front we practiced against all week,” Monken said. Schiano “had a lot of success with that defense when he got it greased up against the option year in and year out.''

Woolfolk a load

Army’s 5-foot-9, 235-pound fullback Darnell Woolfolk had 74 yards on 15 carries. He also made an impression on the OSU defenders, who had to zero in on him first before chasing the rest of the option attack.

“He was a tough guy,” defensive tackle Tracy Sprinkle said. “We knew facing all those Army guys, it was going to be tough. They didn’t quit throughout the whole game.”

Lost opportunity

Army had a chance to cut into Ohio State’s 17-7 lead when it drove to the 23-yard line on the first possession of the second half, but running back Kell Walker was tackled for a 3-yard loss on third-and-4.

Two plays after Blake Wilson missed a 43-yard field goal to the left, the Buckeyes’ J.K. Dobbins ran 52 yards and made it 24-7.

“That’s the one where their free safety ran in and tackled our man on the edge," Monken said of third down. “That was a different play, a little different scheme on the perimeter, than we had run all day. We missed the block. We had a guy assigned to him and he over-pursued the free safety and the free safety ran underneath the block. We had a good seam and if we had made the block we might have scored on that play."

Too much Ohio State

Quarterback Ahmad Bradshaw said Ohio State didn’t do just one or two things well to stop Army.

“They played fundamentally sound and played assignment football," he said. “When you play an option team everyone is assigned to someone and you have to get off blocks, and they did that really well. We didn’t break many tackles."