COLUMBUS, Ohio - Emotions ran high in Ohio Stadium on Saturday as No. 2-ranked Ohio State rallied from down 10 to defeat No. 3 Michigan 30-27 in two overtimes, as OSU earned a share of the Big Ten's East Division title.
The Buckeyes will sit out next week's Big Ten Championship, as Penn State will represent the division. With Ohio State's No. 2 ranking, and wins over three top 10 programs, OSU could become the first team to not win a conference title to advance to the College Football Playoff.
Following the game, Michigan cornerback Jabrill Peppers was seen shoving an Ohio State fan as Buckeyes supporters stormed the field. Peppers is considered one of the leading candidates for this year's Heisman Trophy.
Here's Jabrill Peppers popping an OSU fan in the face pic.twitter.com/G9SGJ7KoBc
— Tim Jessberger (@tjessberger) November 26, 2016
Ohio State clinched the win when OSU running back Curtis Samuel rushed into the end zone from 15 yards.
Ohio State needed to convert on fourth and 1 from the 16 in the second overtime to keep the game alive after Michigan had scored a field goal on its second overtime possession. OSU quarterback JT Barrett dove forward, barely placing the ball over the first down marker.
After referees looked at the play on instant replay, Ohio State was awarded a first down, which infuriated Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, who had earlier been flagged for a spat he had with the referees in the third quarter.
"I thought there were some outrageous calls, including the one that would have ended the game,” Michigan's head coach said. “I was bitterly disappointed with the officiating.”
On the next play, Samuel's touchdown set off a wild celebration with his only touchdown of the game.
"I'm not saying it's the greatest (OSU-Michigan game), because that's disrespectful for the other players that have played in it," Ohio State coach Urban Meyer said, "but that's an instant classic between two great teams. We knew going in it was going to be that way. That's one of the best defenses we've ever gone against."
Despite its earlier loss this season, Ohio State hopes marquee wins over Michigan, Wisconsin and Oklahoma is enough to propel the squad to its second playoff berth in three years.
"I mean it's really out of our hands," Barrett said. "At this time I think we are one of the top four teams in the country, personally, but I think that, like I said, it's up to the committee to do their thing. Hopefully everything works out in our favor."
Ohio State forced overtime after Tyler Durbin nailed a 23-yard field goal before regulation expired. He had previously missed two field goal attempts.
Saturday's matchup was the first overtime contest between the two bitter rivals.
Ohio State has won five in a row versus Michigan, and Michigan has not won in Ohio Stadium since 1998.
The attendance of 110,045 set a stadium record.
Joining the Buckeyes on the field were the Cleveland Cavs, who won the NBA title in June. Most of the squad showed up in Ohio State gear, and LeBron James spent moments before the game throwing the football.