No. 1 ranking not enough for OSU

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) — A weak running game. Too many penalties. A defense that could have been crisper.
Yeah sure, Ohio State (5-0, 2-0 Big Ten) beat Illinois 41-0 Saturday. But instead of celebrating the lopsided win over the Illini (2-4, 1-2), the Buckeyes could not stop talking about their mistakes.
Maybe that’s how they plan on remaining No. 1 in the country.
“You can never be satisfied. We get satisfied and complacent, that’s when we’ll get stunned,”said safety David Moore, “We have a reputation to uphold.”
The Buckeyes committed 11 penalties — including roughing the kicker and excessive celebration after a touchdown — for a loss of 104 yards.
“Kids continue to make mistakes in the open field. We are concerned and will continue to be concerned until we get it corrected,” said Ohio State coach John Cooper. “There’s an old saying that nothing catches up with you until it catches up with you.”
Cooper was also disappointed in the rushing game.
Although the Buckeyes finished with 161 yards rushing, the passing game was obviously the main weapon with 357 yards. The Buckeyes also failed repeatedly during a possession in the first quarter to run in a touchdown from the 1-yard line. Eventually, a short pass did the trick.
Ohio State’s first three points came on its first possession of the game from Dan Stultz’s 40-yard field goal.
Quarterback Joe Germaine threw three touchdown passes for the Buckeyes’ next 21 points. First, it was a 1-yard pass to John Lumpkin with 2:52 left in the first quarter.
Four minutes into the second quarter, Germaine threw a 30-yard touchdown pass to David Boston. And with 6:19 left in the half, Germaine connected on a 37-yard pass with Reggie Germany just at the goal line.
“They’ve got weapons everywhere,” said Illinois coach Ron Turner.
Although Germaine threw for 307 yards, completing 17-of-28, he was not entirely happy.
“I don’t think I’ll ever be as good as I want to be,” Germaine sad. “I hit some balls that were good. Then there were some throws I usually make that I missed today.”
As for the defense, they kept constant pressure on Illinois quarterback Kurt Kittner and his receivers and limited Illinois to 199 yards — just 57 yards from a normally strong rushing game.
The defense even scored a touchdown when Kittner fumbled after being sacked. Linebacker Na’il Diggs returned the ball 47 yards to make it 34-0 with about 11 minutes left in the game.
Many Illinois players said Ohio State was among the best teams they had played in college, but that did not ease the disappointment.
“I’m not going to treat this loss any differently than other loss. I understand that they are the No. 1 team in the country, but when your goal is to win the game, a loss is a loss,” said cornerback Asim Pleas. “We have to have a sense of pride and be ready to challenge anyone who comes into our house.”