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Onto the national championship!

January 06, 2015

98在线福利网Victory was so sweet in New Orleans on Jan. 1 for the Buckeyes, and now attention is turning to a face-off with the Oregon Ducks in the inaugural College Football Playoff National Championship.

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Bucks vs. Ducks Giving ChallengeBucks vs. Ducks has been a bit one-sided.

During its football history, no team has done better against Oregon than Ohio State: a pretty good record to stand on
as the No. 4 Buckeyes (13-1) take on the No. 2 Ducks (13-1) Monday night at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, in the . 

The Buckeyes are a perfect 8-0 when facing Oregon, and that includes victories over the Ducks during three of Ohio State’s seven championship runs in 1958, '61 and '68.

98在线福利网This Ducks team, though, has Heisman Trophy winner and quarterback Marcus Mariota, who has torched defenses his entire career: 12,661 yards, 134 touchdowns and just 13 interceptions.

“He plays his best when it’s hard,” Ohio State coach  during a media event. “He extends plays, and he’s the biggest challenge.”

Of course, the other two top Heisman candidates this year, Wisconsin running back Melvin Gordon and Alabama receiver Amari Cooper, were both limited by the Ohio State defense. Cooper had nine catches for 71 yards and two touchdowns but never broke loose, and Gordon was shelved in the Big Ten Championship Game, getting just 76 yards on 26 carries.

Sophomore defensive end , who was named a unanimous first team All-American:

“If we can shut Mariota down like we did the last two guys, that would be awesome and just a big feat for our defense. It would really prove a lot.”

98在线福利网Ohio State hasn’t won a national title since 2002’s 31-24 victory over Miami. They lost back-to-back titles in 2007 and ’08 to Meyer’s Florida team and Louisiana State, respectively.

Sophomore running back , who ran roughshod over Alabama for a Sugar Bowl-record 230 yards and two touchdowns:

98在线福利网“We can compete with any team in the nation. A team like Alabama who is put on a pedestal and a conference that is put on a pedestal, this shows we can compete and beat them.”

With this championship game, Ohio State and Oregon are both breaking new ground for their programs. This is the first time either team has played a 15th game during a season, and Meyer said he has been paying close attention to his players’ mental and physical status and preparation.

But Bosa shrugs off the concern of an extended season.

“Going into the 15th98在线福利网 game of the season, it’s a grind,” he said. “But when there’s such big stakes up for grabs, when you have the national championship in front of you, you don’t really think about how tired you are or how sore you are. You just think about getting that title.”

A look back: Ohio State's 125th football season included a on Jan. 1. Relive the magic from New Orleans with this photo gallery of the football game and fans!