Photo courtesy of Ohio State athletics
Virtually no one is counting on it, but come Saturday, Akron will try to do something no school from Ohio has done in a century.
That’s beat Ohio State.
The Zips will come to “The Horseshoe” as a 7-touchdown underdog on Saturday. No. 10 Ohio State will look to improve to 3-1.
Over the last decade-plus, Ohio State has been of the preeminent powers in college football. The Buckeyes played for the national championship last season and have finished in the AP top 10 in each of the last seven seasons.
Akron, on the other hand, has been one of the worst FBS programs. The Zips did beat Bryant last week, but are just 2-24 in their last 26 games. They have just one win over an FBS team dating back to October 2018.
The last in-state school to beat the Buckeyes was Oberlin College by a 7-6 score on Oct. 8, 1921. Since then, Ohio State has rattled off 43 straight wins over schools from the Buckeye State.
That may seem like a small number, considering the state of Ohio has the second-most FBS schools, but the Buckeyes went nearly six decades without facing an in-state opponent. From 1933 to 1991, Ohio State did not play an in-state school.
Since then however, Ohio State has played an in-state foe in 21 of 30 seasons. The most recent was a 76-5 victory over Miami University in 2019.
Saturday’s contest will be the first meeting between the Buckeyes and Zips in a decade. Ohio State defeated Akron in 2007, 2007 and 2011 by a combined margin of 90-16. The 28-14 win over Akron in 2001 actually came in Jim Tressel’s head coaching debut at Ohio State.
Akron has a chance to shock the world on Saturday, but safely assuming it doesn’t, Ohio State’s winning streak against in-state schools will officially span more than a century. The contest kicks off 7:30 p.m. ET and airs on Big Ten Network.