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Miller tosses 4 TDs, Ohio State routs Purdue

The SportsXchange

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Just in case folks thought Ohio State's dynamic offensive performance against Penn State was a fluke, the Buckeyes duplicated the effort Saturday against Purdue.

Braxton Miller threw four touchdown passes in the first half to help No. 4 Ohio State roll past the Boilermakers 56-0 on Saturday afternoon.

The Buckeyes produced 640 yards a week after rolling up 686 in a 63-14 win over Penn State a week earlier.

"I feel like any minute, something explosive can happen," said Carlos Hyde, who ran for 111 yards. "We have so many guys around that can make big plays. When we're out there, you just basically wait your turn. Pretty soon, coach is going to call your number, and just make that play."

Jeff Heuerman had a career-high 116 yards receiving for the Buckeyes (9-0, 5-0 Big Ten), who are trying to stay in the national title picture. Urban Meyer won his 21st consecutive game to start his Ohio State coaching career. The win streak is the nation's longest.

Miller connected on 19 of 23 passes for 233 yards. His backup, Kenny Guiton, ran for two touchdowns and threw for another.

Heuerman said the offense doesn't change much when Guiton steps in.

"When we put Kenny in, our offense still is like a knife through butter down the field," Heuerman said.

Heuerman, a tight end, had 139 yards receiving all season heading into the game. He had 98 yards in the first quarter on Saturday.

"My job is easy," Heuerman said. "It trickles down. Good protection from the O-line and then a good throw from the quarterback, and then all I do is catch the ball."

The 42 points Purdue allowed in the first half tied a school record for most points allowed in a half set against Notre Dame in 1988 and Ohio State in 2010.

It was Purdue's sixth straight loss after barely squeaking out a win against Football Championship Subdivision team Indiana State. The Boilermakers (1-7, 0-4) surpassed their record for most points allowed at home set earlier this season against Northern Illinois.

"It's been a struggle, very much a struggle right now," Purdue coach Darrell Hazell said. "We've got to get a whole lot better as opposed to where we are right now."

Purdue's offense was just as dismal as its defense, producing just 116 yards. Danny Etling completed just 13 of 29 passes for 89 yards and was sacked six times. The Buckeyes made a point to pressure the freshman.

"We have guys that can get to the quarterback, and I think we play better when we're on the attack," Ohio State safety C.J. Barnett said. "Make them react to us instead of us reacting to them."

Ohio State's Doran Grant intercepted Etling's first pass and returned it 33 yards for a touchdown 57 seconds into the game.

Just a few minutes later, Miller found a wide-open Heuerman for a 40-yard touchdown.

Late in the first quarter, Miller tossed another touchdown pass, this one seven yards to Nick Vannett. After Purdue fumbled an exchange and Ohio State recovered, the Buckeyes wasted no time. Miller connected for his third touchdown pass of the quarter, a 2-yard strike to Corey Brown, to bump the Buckeyes' lead to 28-0.

"One of the things we talked about all week was getting off to a good start," Hazell said. "We did just the opposite there."

Guiton's 1-yard touchdown pass to Chris Fields bumped the advantage to 35-0 with 8:20 left in the second quarter.

Miller fired another touchdown pass, a 10-yarder to Ezekiel Elliott, with 1:46 left in the second quarter to push Ohio State's lead to 42-0 at halftime, and the Buckeyes rolled from there.

"People downing us all the time," Ohio State running back Dontre Wilson said. "We're just blowing teams out and everybody always say we don't really play that much competition, but we're still proving that we can play with the big teams, and we're blowing the other teams out. We're pretty much just making statements."

NOTES: Purdue wore black helmets, jerseys and pants. It was a black out game for the crowd, but half the crowd was wearing Ohio State's red. ... Purdue defeated Ohio State 26-23 in overtime in 2011. Ohio State won 29-22 in overtime last year. ... Miller was named the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week last week. ... Ohio State has not allowed a 100-yard rusher this season. ... Ohio State is one win short of matching the longest streak in school history. The Buckeyes won 22 straight from 1967-69.
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