Ohio State’s magical year highlighted by freshman RB Maurice Clarett

Maurice Clarett, former Ohio State Running back

AP/Amy Sancetta

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WKBN) – To become the first to do anything is an accomplishment. To become the first freshman running back to start their first game at Ohio State was a great achievement. Maurice Clarett – Mr. Football in Ohio from Warren Harding – began his only season in Columbus by dismantling the Texas Tech defense on August 24, 2002. Clarett ran for 175 yards on 21 carries and scored three times. He also caught four passes. The Buckeyes won, 45-21.

Twenty-one days later, Clarett was back at it again as this time he went over 200-yards (230) against #10 Washington State. A game the Buckeyes won, 25-7.

Clarett was named Big Ten’s Freshman of the Year after amassing 1237 yards on the ground (5.6 avg) and scoring a total of 18 touchdowns. His biggest came in the BCS National Championship game with Miami. In the second overtime, it was #13 who scored from 5-yards out to give the Buckeyes’ the winning score (31-24).

Clarett was chosen in the 2005 NFL Draft by Denver, final choice of the third round (#101).

Maurice Clarett, RB/Ohio State
2002: 1237 rushing yards, 5.6 avg, 16 TDs; 12 receptions, 104 yards, 2 TDs

2002 Buckeyes’ Results
Buckeyes 31 Miami, FL 24 (BCS National Championship Game, Fiesta Bowl)
Buckeyes 14 Michigan 9
Buckeyes 23 Illinois 16
Buckeyes 10 Purdue 6
Buckeyes 34 Minnesota 3
Buckeyes 13 Penn State 7
Buckeyes 19 Wisconsin 14
Buckeyes 50 San Jose State 7
Buckeyes 27 Northwestern 16
Buckeyes 45 Indiana 17
Buckeyes 23 Cincinnati 19
Buckeyes 25 Washington State 7
Buckeyes 51 Kent State 17
Buckeyes 45 Texas Tech 21

Countdown to College Football
August 14 – Top sports star in 1942 wins Heisman
August 15 – Before politics, Traficant started at QB for Pitt
August 16 – Roger Staubach meets Youngstown State
August 17 – “Best linebacker I ever coached” says Woody Hayes
August 18 – Sherman “Tank” runs wild for Miami of Ohio
August 19 – Sugar Bowl MVP aids Pitt in title game
August 20 – Lombardi award winner called New Castle home
August 21 – Walk-on Karlis kicks for Cincinnati
August 22 – K-State registers 1st bowl victory; Coleman named MVP
August 23 – Burke’s 400-yard game lifts Michigan State past Brady & Michigan
August 24 – Clarett shines for Buckeyes in memorable season
August 25 – Syracuse’s workhorse from Struthers
August 26 – Missouri’s dual-threat quarterback boosts Tigers to top Nebraska
August 27 – Penn State QB guides Nittany Lion faithful to Rose Bowl

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