Buckeyes Return, Face Fighting Illini

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COLUMBUS, Ohio —  A lot has happened in the world of college football since fans last saw Ohio State on the gridiron.  Oregon, a team ahead of the Buckeyes in the polls, put up a lackluster effort and lost to once-beaten Stanford.

Undefeated Baylor bolstered their resume by thumping Big 12 power, Oklahoma.  Florida State beat up another ACC team, thumping Wake Forest. Plus, the Alabama express continues the roll. The top team in country took care of LSU to put their stranglehold on a potential third-straight BCS National Championship.

So now after 13 days off, and with three regular season games left, the third-ranked Buckeyes’ (9-0, 5-0 Big Ten) quest for perfection and legitimate title run begins with a road tilt at Illinois (3-6, 0-5 Big Ten).

Ohio State hasn’t suited up since November 2, when they extended their winning streak to 21 games by dominating Purdue, 56-0.

Braxton Miller and the defense jumped all over the Boilermakers from the opening kickoff.

After a first pick six from corner-back Doran Grant on Purdue’s first possession, Miller was near flawless.  He finished the game 19-23 for 233 yards, four touchdowns and one interception, while sitting out the entire second half.

Ohio State should not have any trouble facing the Fighting Illini defense.  Illinois ranks 105th in the country by allowing 34.7 points per game.

Carlos Hyde is on a roll.  He has rushed for roughly 600 yards and seven scores in the last four games.

Kick-off is set for noon from Memorial Stadium in Champaign, Illinois.

P.J. Ziegler will have all the game highlights tonight on FOX 8 News after college football coverage. Plus, look for a full report here on FOX8.com.

The Buckeyes will close out their home portion of their schedule next week when Indiana visits the Horseshoe.


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than 300000 in VirginiaThe Mid-Atlantic wasn’t the only region to get hit Thursday Lightning lit up the sky over Atlanta Thursday evening as a line of thunderstorms moved through north and central Georgia Georgia Power reported that nearly 1000000 customers had lost power as of 8:30 pmIn North Carolina weather forecasters and utility companies reported downed trees and more than 157000 customers without power mostly in the Piedmont regionStill overall the storms appear to have caused less wind damage than was feared through early Thursday said Bill Bunting of the National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center in Norman Okla Whether they were as bad as anticipated he said “depends on where you live”He said thunderstorms took longer than expected to merge into a large line that could cause widespread damage The merger also happened farther east than expected which limited the potential for widespread damage in Illinois and Indiana though those states still had pockets of severe weatherEven before merging the individual storms remained powerful Bunting saidBesides reports of damaging winds and preliminary tornado sightings the weather service has received reports of hail at least an inch in diameter in locations stretching from southeast Minnesota to Virginia he saidIn Ohio storms with swift straight-line winds soaked parts of the state knocking down trees and barns and leaving many without power Thursday as commuters dodged fallen branches on roads and faced backups at intersections where traffic lights were outStraight-line winds topping 70 mph were reported and more than two dozen tornado warnings were issued as two rounds of storms pummeled the state but no twisters have been confirmed said Phillip Johnson who was part of the team monitoring developments for the Ohio Emergency Management AgencyPlay was suspended at the US Open at Merion Golf Club outside Philadelphia less than two hours after the start of the first round and resumed about three hours later before another brief delay in the eveningIn New Jersey officials opened the state’s Emergency Operations Center on Thursday morning to monitor the storm’s progress The weather service issued a flood watch for most of the state Forecasters predicted 1 to 2 inches of rain will fall on swollen rivers and streams As thunderstorms rumbled across the southern and central parts of the state thousands of residents were left without powerIn northern New York rain sent rivers and streams over their banks leading to evacuations and road closuresEarly Thursday morning thunderstorms that punched through northern Illinois caused significant wind damage mainly in rural areas west and south of Chicago The city was largely spared The weather service said intense winds estimated to have reached 70-80 mph in some areas snapped large trees at their trunks or uprooted them entirelyWhether the storms were a derecho will take time to determine forecasters said A derecho is a storm of strong straight-line winds spanning at least 240 miles The systems are distinctive and take on a comma or bow shape and usually have a large area of very cold cloud tops not typically seen in an ordinary thunderstorm“A derecho is based more on research” said Evan Bentley a meteorologist at the weather service office for northern Indiana “How much damage how widespread it was” It could take days to determine whether the storms met the criteria he saidEven if the storm wasn’t a derecho it still brought several tornadoes large hail and flooding that did some damage WednesdayIn the small town of Belmond Iowa about 90 miles north of Des Moines Duwayne Abel owner of Cattleman’s Steaks & Provisions restaurant said a tornado demolished part of the building No one was in the restaurant at the time“I was oh eight miles west of town and I looked toward town and I could see a funnel cloud having no idea it was exactly where our restaurant was” Abel said His wife and an employee were able to get out of the restaurant and sought shelter in a basementNearly a year ago a derecho led to two dozen deaths caused at least $1 billion in damage from Chicago to Washington and left more than 4 million customers without power Winds reached nearly 100 mph in some places___Associated Press writers David Dishneau in Baltimore; Sarah Brumfield and Seth Borenstein in Washington; Bob Lewis in Richmond; Carla K Johnson in Chicago; Malcolm Ritter in New York; Charles Wilson in Indianapolis; and Barbara Rodriguez in Des Moines Iowa contributed to this reportTo see the guns and get bidding information visit .000. 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