A list of Ohio State's most dramatic endings

RUSTY MILLER AP Sports Writer Published:

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- There's still a buzz around Ohio State about the Buckeyes' dramatic victory over No. 12 Wisconsin on Saturday night.

But how long will it last? One bit of late-game drama may have more staying power than another.

The Buckeyes pulled out a 33-29 victory on Braxton Miller's looping 40-yard touchdown pass to fellow freshman Devin Smith with 20 seconds left, capping a crazy final 5 minutes.

Here, with an assist from Ohio State historian Jack Park, author of "The Official Ohio State Football Encyclopedia," is a look at some of the wildest finishes in the program's 122 years:

-- Sept. 24, 1977. No. 3 Oklahoma, which once led 20-0, pulled to 28-26 on halfback Elvis Peacock's 1-yard plunge with 1:29 left, but the fourth-ranked Buckeyes, led by Paul Ross, Mike Guess and Tom Blinco, stopped Peacock on the two-point conversion try. The Sooners, however, recovered the onside kick at the 50 and run four plays to get the ball to the Ohio State 23. Out came Uwe von Schamann. With 3 seconds left, the former West Berlin soccer player kicked a 41-yard field goal for the 29-28 victory.

-- Sept. 24, 1988. No. 7 LSU was up 33-20 with 4:24 left, sending most of a crowd of 90,584 at Ohio Stadium home early. But the Buckeyes -- in John Cooper's third game as coach -- scored two touchdowns and a safety in a span of 1:18, with Greg Frey hitting a diving Bobby Olive on a 20-yard touchdown pass with 38 seconds left to give the Buckeyes a stunning 36-33 upset.

-- Jan. 5, 2009. Texas' Colt McCoy, now the quarterback of the Cleveland Browns, zipped a short pass to Quan Cosby that Buckeyes safety Anderson Russell tried to intercept. But Cosby snatched it and raced to the end zone for a 26-yard touchdown with 16 seconds left to turn a 21-17 Fiesta Bowl deficit into a 24-21 win for the third-ranked Longhorns.

-- Nov. 13, 1943. Remembered as "The Fifth Quarter" game. Illinois halfback Eddie McGovern fumbled and the Buckeyes' Bobby McQuade recovered with just 10 seconds left. With time for just one play, McQuade, also the quarterback, threw a pass into the end zone for halfback Ernie Parks that fell incomplete. The officials fired a gun into the air, which signaled that the game was over, sending both teams to their locker rooms assured they had battled to a 26-26 tie. Most of a crowd of 36,331 at Ohio Stadium left. Almost no one had seen head linesman Paul Goebel throw a flag for the Illinois left tackle being offside on the play. Since the game could not end on a defensive penalty, after a conference the officials brought back both teams back for an additional play. Many of the players had to get back into their equipment and uniforms. Nearly 10 minutes after the supposed final play, the players reconvened on the field. Just before Johnny Stungis, a 17-year-old freshman, went out to try a 33-yard field goal, coach Paul Brown told him, "I've never missed one from that distance." He later said that was because he had never tried one from that far. But Stungis came through, converting the first -- and only -- field goal attempt of his college career.

-- Dec. 29, 1978. "Woody Hayes Resigns" blared the Pearl Harbor-sized headlines in The Columbus Dispatch the next day. But the venerable Ohio State coach had not resigned. He had been asked to resign the night before after slugging Clemson linebacker Charlie Bauman, who had intercepted quarterback Art Schlichter's pass over the middle and run out of bounds with 1:59 left. Both sidelines were stunned by Hayes' inexplicable action. The Buckeyes had been marching toward what could have been a wild finish, but a 17-15 defeat ended up being overshadowed by the downfall of the legendary 28-year head of the program.

-- Oct. 28, 1989. Down 31-0, Ohio State outscored Minnesota 41-6 over the last 30 minutes to pull out a 41-37 stunner. The Buckeyes scored two touchdowns on fourth-down plays and made three two-point conversions in a wild comeback that set Big Ten and school records. Faced with a second-and-23 situation on their final drive, Frey hit tight end Jim Palmer for a 34-yard pickup. The winning points came on Frey's 15-yarder to Jeff Graham with 51 seconds left.

-- Nov. 2, 1935. At the time, it was referred to as "The Game of the Century" but is now largely a footnote. Both Notre Dame, coached by Elmer Layden of "Four Horsemen" fame, and the Buckeyes of Francis Schmidt were unbeaten. Ohio State led 13-12 and recovered an onside kick with under 2 minutes left. A win seemed certain. But the Buckeyes fumbled and the Fighting Irish took over at their own 49 with 55 seconds left. Bill Shakespeare (yes, his full first name was William) came on when starting ND quarterback Andy Pilney suffered a wrenched knee on a run to the OSU 19. After an incompletion, Shakespeare hit Wayne Millner in the end zone final seconds to pull off the improbable victory.

-- Jan. 3, 2003. No. 2 Ohio State built a 17-7 second-half lead only to have No. 1 Miami tie it on a field goal to force overtime in the 2003 Fiesta Bowl, which served as the Bowl Championship Series national championship game. The Hurricanes, seeking a repeat title, scored in the first overtime on a pass from Ken Dorsey to Kellen Winslow. The Hurricanes began celebrating when a fourth-down pass into the end zone was batted away on Ohio State's possession, but a late flag from official Terry Porter -- defensive holding -- extended the game and allowed the Buckeyes to tie it. They then scored on a 5-yard run by freshman tailback Maurice Clarett, who also had a huge defensive play in the game, and then pressured Dorsey into an incompletion on fourth down to lock up their first national championship in 34 years.

-- Nov. 9, 1974. Down 16-13, the top-ranked Buckeyes drove from their own 29 to the Michigan State 5. Fullback Champ Henson muscled his way to the goal line with 29 seconds left and with Ohio State out of timeouts. MSU's defenders took their time getting up and back to the line of scrimmage and there was confusion in the Buckeyes' backfield. When the ball was finally snapped, it went through the legs of quarterback Cornelius Greene, was picked up and carried into the end zone by wingback Brian Baschnagel. One official signaled a touchdown, while another said time had expired before the snap. Roughly half of the crowd of 78,533 fans had left Spartan Stadium when, 46 minutes after the game ended, Big Ten Commissioner Wayne Duke announced that Michigan State had won the game, 16-13.


Rusty Miller can be reached at http://twitter.com/rustymillerap .

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