CFB: Barclay's OT kick puts Ohio St in Rose Bowl, 27-24
By RUSTY MILLER
AP Sports Writer
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Back-up Devin Barclay kicked a 39-yard field goal in overtime to give No. 10 Ohio State a 27-24 victory over No. 15 Iowa and send the Buckeyes to the Rose Bowl for the first time in 13 years.
The Buckeyes (9-2, 6-1) clinched at least a share of their fifth consecutive Big Ten title and the conference's automatic BCS bid.
Iowa (9-2, 5-2), which overcame a 24-10 deficit with just over 11 minutes left, lost its second in a row. Redshirt freshman quarterback James Vandenberg was solid for the Hawkeyes in his first college start. But filling in for the injured Ricky Stanzi, Vandenberg was intercepted three times, the final time to end Iowa's only possession in overtime.
Brandon Saine rushed for 105 yards and two touchdowns and Dan Herron added another score for the Buckeyes.
Iowa started overtime with an incompletion. Then freshman Adam Robinson was thrown for a 6-yard loss by Austin Spitler and Doug Worthington sacked Vandenberg for a 10-yard loss in the extra period. Out of field goal range on fourth-and-26, Vandenberg then lofted a long pass into the end zone that was picked off by Anderson Russell.
The Buckeyes handled the ball with extra care — just the way coach Jim Tressel wanted. Three runs up the middle netted two yards. On came Barclay, the Buckeyes' front-line kicker since taking over after starter Aaron Pettrey injured a knee three games ago.
His kick split the uprights, touching off a wild scene as thousands rushed the field. A cadre of state police surrounded the goal posts, preventing anyone from tearing them down. But that didn't prevent the frenzied crowd from mobbing the Buckeyes players, snapping pictures and joining the team in singing the alma mater.
The Buckeyes haven't been to Pasadena since the 1996 team finished No. 2 in the nation, scoring in the final minute to beat Arizona State 20-17 in the Rose Bowl.
Ohio State does not want to duplicate one aspect of that season, however — those Buckeyes were perfect all year until losing 13-9 to Michigan in the regular-season finale. Ohio State plays at its archrival next Saturday.
Iowa, a 17-point underdog, made several unforced errors. The Hawkeyes dropped passes, including one in the end zone, had an interception go off a receiver's hands and missed a chip-shot field goal.
Still, the Hawkeyes tied it at 10 on Vandenberg's 9-yard slant pass to Marvin McNutt midway through the third period.
The Buckeyes counter-punched. Putting together a 79-yard drive. Facing a third and 10 at his own 30, Terrelle Pryor — who completed 14 of 17 passes for 93 yards and ran for 29 more yards — slashed up the middle on a draw, juking linebacker Pat Angerer, for 19 yards.
On the next play, tailback Herron took a direct snap and swept right, stiff-arming Brett Greenwood and then turning the corner for the go-ahead score with 13:03 left.
Vandenberg then tossed his second interception, picked off by Ross Homan. On the first play from the Iowa 49, Saine took the ball on a quick-hitter off left tackle and outraced everyone for a 24-10 lead.
The 14-point margin was short-lived, however. Derrell Johnson-Koulianos dropped the ensuing kickoff, picked it up, shed a tackle and raced to the right sideline where he sidestepped another potential tackler before sprinting 99 yards for the fourth-longest return ever for Iowa.
Barclay missed a 47-yard field goal that might have salted it away, and Vandenberg made several big plays on the next drive.
Brian Rolle's interception return for a touchdown was wiped out by an Ohio State offside penalty. Vandenberg, who completed 20-of-33 passes for 233 yards and two scores, then threw a pass directly to two Buckeyes but it popped up in the air and tight end Tony Moeaki quickly grabbed it for a 16-yard pickup.
Vandenberg flipped a high pass into the end zone where McNutt pulled it in with two hands over defender Chimdi Chekwa to tie it at 24.