Ohio State football faces its toughest opponent of the season in its biggest game on New Year’s Eve.
The Buckeyes, No. 4 in the country with an 11-1 record, face the reigning national champions and No. 1-ranked 13-0 Georgia at 8 p.m. in the Peach Bowl, which doubles as a College Football Playoff semifinal showdown.
The last time the Buckeyes played, they lost to Michigan in Columbus and their College Football Playoff hopes seemed to be on life support. But after an upset by Utah, whom Ohio State beat a year ago in the Rose Bowl, over USC in the Pac-12 championship game, the Buckeyes were back in the picture.
Now they play the team many picked in August to repeat as champions.
The Bulldogs looked vulnerable at times this season, but it was rare. For every close game against Kent State, Missouri and Kentucky, there was a 50-30 blowout of LSU, a 48-7 win over South Carolina and a 49-3 win over Oregon.
Michigan football vs. TCU:What channel is the Michigan game on vs. TCU football at the Fiesta Bowl in the CFP?
Ohio State has its work cut out if it wants to move on to the national championship game on Jan. 9.
Can the Buckeyes get there? Follow the action live with score and news updates from The Columbus Dispatch’s team of reporters and photographers in Atlanta.
Tight game, injured tight ends mark Peach Bowl
In an exciting Peach Bowl, both Ohio State and Georgia have been playing without wounded tight ends. Buckeyes’ starter Cade Stover hurt his lower back. Georgia’s Darnell Washington, the other half of the Bulldogs’ talented tight end combo along with Brock Bowers, has been out with a left ankle injury.
|Sack-Adj Rush Yd(Avg)||29 (2.6)||129 (10.8)|
|Time of Poss||15:38||14:22|
|Turnovers (Def Pts Off)||0 (0)||1 (7)|
|Sacks (Def Yds)||1 (7)||2 (19)|
|TFL (Def Yds)||3 (17)||3 (20)|
Xavier Johnson, OSU recapture lead with 49-second scoring drive | Score: Ohio State 28, Georgia 24
Getting the ball with 1:44 remaining until half, OSU scored, with the key play being a 37-yard touchdown pass from C.J. Stroud to Xavier Johnson.
Georgia field goal gives Bulldogs Peach Bowl edge on OSU | Score: Georgia 24, Ohio State 21
After missing a kick earlier in this game, Jack Podlesny made a 32-yarder to give UGA its first lead.
Ohio State held Georgia to the field goal try by stymying the Bulldogs on third-and-10, so Georgia is now 2 of 4 on third down, while the Buckeyes are 2 for 5 in that same category.
Ohio State gave the ball back to Georgia after taking a costly fourth-down illegal motion penalty that changed coach Ryan Day’s strategy: Originally set to go for it, OSU instead opted to punt.
UGA gets run game going to tie up Peach Bowl | Score: Ohio State 21, Georgia 21
Georgia’s Stetson Bennett has tied up the Peach Bowl with a 3-yard run, the 12th rushing touchdown of his career. The big play on that drive was a Kenny McIntosh 52-yard yard right up the gut of the Ohio State defense that would have resulted in a score had McIntosh not tripped with nary an OSU defender around.
UGA cuts into OSU’s lead with a Kendell Milton rushing touchdown | Score: Ohio State 21, Georgia 14
The Bulldogs scored on a 4-play drive that included two pass plays and two runs. The touchdown was of the rushing variety as Kendell Milton bounced outside for 11 yards.
Georgia tight end Darnell Washington has left for the locker room to have an injury tended to. He entered tonight’s game with 26 receptions for 417 yards and two touchdowns.
OSU’s Marvin Harrison makes his second touchdown catch | Score: Ohio State 21, Georgia 7
Ohio State took advantage of the short field by getting the ball to Marvin Harrison in the end zone for a 16-yard touchdown catch and a 21-7 OSU lead. Harrison has 106 receiving yards; quarterback C.J. Stroud has 154 yards passing.
Ohio State’s Steele Chambers picks off Georgia’s Stetson Bennett
Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett attempted to throw a pass to Kenny McIntosh but missed that OSU linebacker Steele Chambers had slipped underneath. The end result is the Buckeyes getting the ball at the UGA 30.
OSU takes lead again thanks to a Miyan Williams run | Score Ohio State 14, Georgia 7
Miyan Williams plowed ahead for 2-yard touchdown to give OSU the lead back.
Emeka Egbuka and Marvin Harrison figured prominently in Ohio State’s most recent scoring drive – Egbuka by making a 10-yard catch and drawing a third-down pass interference call, Harrison by recording a 24-yard reception. Harrison fumbled at the end of that play, but the ball went out of bounds.
Cade Stover is in the medical tent for Ohio State after tweaking something leaping for a 7-yard catch.
First-quarter Peach Bowl statistics:
|Sack-Adj Rush Yd(Avg)||19 (3.8)||17 (5.7)|
|Time of Poss||7:19||7:41|
|Turnovers (Def Pts Off)||0 (0)||0 (0)|
|Sacks (Def Yds)||1 (7)||1 (10)|
|TFL (Def Yds)||3 (17)||1 (10|
UGA’s Stetson Bennett piling up early numbers against Ohio State | Score: Ohio State 7, Georgia 7
Stetson Bennett has completed 9 of 10 pass attempts for 110 yards and a game-tying touchdown. His latest toss was a short completion to Kenny McIntosh, who ran straight up the middle for a 25-yard score. The Bulldogs are racking up some yards after catch (54), which is a big part of the reason the Peach Bowl is tied.
Ohio State capped its second possession with a 31-yard touchdown pass from C.J. Stroud to Marvin Harrison to give the Buckeyes a first-quarter lead. Harrison already has three catches for 66 yards. Stroud has 79 yards on 4-for-5 passing.
The Bulldogs got into field-goal range (Jack Podlesny has a career-long of 50 yards), but Podlesny missed a 47-yard attempt, so the Peach Bowl is still scoreless.
OSU quarterback C.J. Stroud threw a first-down pass to Marvin Harrison on the opening offensive play for the Buckeyes, but after that, things stalled for coach Ryan Day’s crew. That included Stroud being sacked for the ninth time this season.
Although Miyan Williams is, according to the Ohio State coaching staff, healthy, freshman Dallan Hayden was the running back on the field for the Buckeyes’ first offensive snap of the game.
With honorary captains Mike Doss (Ohio State) and Champ Bailey (Georgia) accompanying each team’s captains to midfield, Georgia won the toss and deferred to the second half. The Buckeyes will receive the opening kick, and the Bulldogs will defend the east goal.
TCU to play in 2023 national championship against either Ohio State or Georgia
Ohio State will not have a chance at a rematch against Michigan in the national championship.
No. 3 TCU survived against No. 2 Michigan Saturday afternoon, beating the Wolverines 51-45 in the College Football Playoff semifinal at the Fiesta Bowl.
Both teams combined for 96 points — the most points ever scored in a Fiesta Bowl — with 1,012 total yards offense, including a stretch in the third and fourth quarters where TCU and Michigan traded eight touchdowns in eight minutes.
Ohio State’s first bout with Georgia during Peach Bowl week came between a former Buckeye quarterback and the Bulldogs’ co-defensive coordinator
At the end of his media availability ahead of the College Football Playoff semifinal, Georgia’s Will Muschamp reflected on the Bulldogs’ only previous matchup with Ohio State in the 1993 Citrus Bowl — a 21-14 Georgia win.
In doing so, Muschamp called out Kirk Herbstreit, who will be on ESPN’s call for the Peach Bowl Saturday.
“We had a… luncheon, and (when) Herbstreit got up and threw a pass across the room, I knew we had a shot to win,” Muschamp said. “Make sure he knows I said that.”
Herbstreit said he didn’t remember Muschamp making much of an impact against Ohio State during the Citrus Bowl, but did remember the throw the Georgia co-defensive coordinator spoke of.
“It was one of those autograph balls, those white-panel balls,” he said. “I remember throwing it and not being real happy with how far I had to throw it because I couldn’t grip the ball. So I kind of shot putted the ball. That’s all I remember.”
With less than an hour before Ohio State vs. Georgia, former Buckeyes head football coach Urban Meyer is paying attention to what’s going on in Arizona.
Starting with a 34-yard touchdown pass from Michigan quarterback JJ McCarthy to wide receiver Ronnie Bell, the Wolverines and TCU traded eight touchdowns in eight minutes, ballooning to a 48-38 TCU lead at the beginning of the fourth quarter.
Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud ended his regular season in the same place as Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett: New York City.
Both Bennett and Stroud finished the 2022 season as Heisman Trophy finalists, finishing behind TCU quarterback Max Duggan and USC quarterback and Heisman winner Caleb Williams.
Ahead of both meeting for the first time in the Peach Bowl, here’s how Stroud’s and Bennett’s stats compare from the 2022 season.
C.J. Stroud (12 games): 3,340 passing yards, 66.2% completion rate, 37 total touchdowns, six interceptions
Stetson Bennett (13 games): 3,425 passing yards, 67.9% completion rate, 27 total touchdowns, six interceptions
Ohio State vs. Georgia will see a Pac-12 officiating crew during the College Football Playoff semifinal at the Peach Bowl.
Here’s a look at who will be on the officiating crew Saturday night.
- Referee: Chris Coyte
- Umpire: Greg Adams
- Head lines: Darryl Johnson
- Line judge: Dale Keller
- Field judge: Steve Currie
- Side judge: Jeff Dahle
- Back judge: Joe Johnston
- Center judge: John Love
- Alternates: Steve Strimling
- Replay: Jerry Meyerhoff
- Communicator: Terry Leyden
Ohio State is still an underdog against Georgia, something it hasn’t been since the 2021 national championship game against Alabama. But the margin is getting slimmer.
The No. 4 Buckeyes are not facing a 4.5-point spread against the No. 1 Bulldogs, according to Tipico Sportsbook, with the money line set at +180.
Ohio State, which has won 11 of its 12 games during 2022, is 5-6-1 against the spread this season and 9-3 on the over/under.
Miyan Williams, Matthew Jones available, Gee Scott Jr. a game-time decision for Ohio State vs. Georgia
Ohio State tight end Gee Scott Jr. is a game-time decision ahead of the Buckeyes’ College Football Playoff semifinal matchup against Georgia Saturday.
In 12 games this season, Scott has five catches for 28 yards, including two-yard touchdown reception against Michigan State: his first career score.
The Buckeyes also have 11 players listed as unavailable against the Bulldogs: wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba, RB TreVeyon Henderson, WR Kamryn Babb, OL Avery Henry, RB T.C. Caffey, WR Corban Cleveland, LB Mitchell Melton, LB Jalen Pace, RB Evan Pryor, SAF Kourt Williams and LS Bradley Robinson.
What time is the Ohio State vs. Georgia game?
Kickoff: 8 p.m., Dec. 31, at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.
What channel is the Ohio State game on against Georgia in the Peach Bowl?
The Buckeyes will play the Bulldogs on ESPN and it may be the last Ohio State game on the “World Wide Leader” for some time.
The Big Ten signed new television deals with Fox and CBS this summer. However, if Ohio State beats Georgia, the national championship game will also be on ESPN.
Columbus Dispatch coverage:The Dispatch has you covered for the Ohio State vs. Georgia College Football Playoff semi
Is Kirk Herbstreit calling the Buckeye game? Yup.
Ohio State football’s College Football Playoff appearance will be called by ESPN’s top college football crew.
Play-by-play announcer Chris Fowler, color commentator Kirk Herbstreit, a former Ohio State quarterback, and sideline reporters Holly Rowe and Laura Rutledge will call the No. 4 Buckeyes’ Peach Bowl appearance against No. 1 Georgia Dec. 31 at 8 p.m. on ESPN.
Ohio State football radio station, broadcast information
The Ohio State game will be broadcast in Columbus on 97.1 FM and 1460 AM.
Here are the announcers:
- Paul Keels (play-by-play)
- Jim Lachey (analysis)
- Matt Andrews (sideline)
What is the 2022 College Football Playoff schedule?
While the Buckeyes play Georgia at 8 p.m., TCU and Michigan will play at 4 p.m. at the Fiesta Bowl in Glendale, Arizona.
The winners of the two games will meet at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California, at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 9.
When is sports betting legal in Ohio? Can you bet on Ohio State vs. Georgia?
When the ball drops and 2023 arrives, sports betting in Ohio will officially be legal. But it’s unclear whether live betting will be available in Ohio if the Buckeyes-Georgia game carries into Jan. 1.
If the Buckeyes win, Ohio State fans can bet on the national championship game.
Ohio State football schedule 2022
- Sept. 3: Ohio State 21, Notre Dame 10
- Sept. 10: Ohio State 45, Arkansas State 12
- Sept. 17: Ohio State 77, Toledo 21
- Sept. 24: Ohio State 52, Wisconsin 21
- Oct. 1: Ohio State 49, Rutgers 10
- Oct. 8: Ohio State 49, Michigan State 20
- Oct. 22: Ohio State 54, Iowa 10
- Oct. 29: Ohio State 44, Penn State 31
- Nov. 5: Ohio State 21, Northwestern 7
- Nov. 12: Ohio State 56, Indiana 14
- Nov. 19: Ohio State 43, Maryland 30
- Nov. 26: Michigan 45, Ohio State 23
Georgia football schedule 2022
- Sept. 3: Georgia 49, Oregon 3
- Sept. 10: Georgia 33, Samford 0
- Sept. 17: Georgia 48, South Carolina 7
- Sept. 24: Georgia 39, Kent State 22
- Oct. 1: Georgia 26, Missouri 22
- Oct. 8: Georgia 42, Auburn 10
- Oct. 15: Georgia 55, Vanderbilt 0
- Oct. 29: Georgia 42, Florida 20
- Nov. 5: Georgia 27, Tennessee 13
- Nov. 12: Georgia 45, Mississippi 19
- Nov. 19: Georgia 16, Kentucky 6
- Nov. 26: Georgia 37, Georgia Tech 14
- Dec. 3: Georgia 50, LSU 30