ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Dwayne Haskins replaced injured star J.T. Barrett at quarterback and led the ninth-ranked Buckeyes from behind to beat the Wolverines, 31-20, on Saturday for their sixth straight win in the rivalry.
Barrett was warming up on the sideline before kickoff when he said an unidentified male made accidental contact with his right leg, aggravating a knee injury he has played through all season.
“I remember he was wearing something gray, and he continued to walk,” Barrett said. “He got a little nervous.”
Buckeyes coach Urban Meyer was more than a little upset, calling for an investigation of the incident.
“Too many people on the sideline,” Meyer said after the game. “I’m so angry right now.”
Barrett said he will play Saturday night when Ohio State (10-2, 8-1) plays in the Big Ten championship game against No. 5 Wisconsin.
The Wolverines (8-4, 5-4) have lost 13 of 14 to Ohio State, including the last three with coach Jim Harbaugh.
“We need to get better. That’s our mission,” Harbaugh said.
Michigan was relegated to starting fifth-year senior John O’Korn because Brandon Peters wasn’t cleared to play with a concussion and Wilton Speight is still out with cracked vertebrae. O’Korn was 17-for-32 for 195 yards, one touchdown and one interception, which came with about two minutes left and the Buckeyes up 24-20, when he heaved a pass deep to the middle of the field where only defensive back Jordan Fuller could catch it.
“That was all on me,” O’Korn said.
Mike Weber sealed it for Ohio State with a 25-yard touchdown run with 1:44 left.
Haskins took full advantage of his chance to play in the third and fourth quarters. The redshirt freshman was 6-for-7 for 94 yards and had a 22-yard run that set up J.K. Dobbins’ 1-yard touchdown that gave Ohio State a 21-20 lead late in the third quarter.
“What an introduction for the rivalry,” Buckeyes center Billy Price said.
Barrett grabbed his right knee on a run midway through the third quarter after being tackled. He limped off the field and toward the locker room before returning to watch the rest of the game from the sideline.
“I’ve played with it this whole year,” he said. “This time, it didn’t unlock for me.”
Barrett was 3-for-8 for 30 yards with a TD and ran 15 times for 67 yards and another score.
The Wolverines had taken a 20-14 lead on Karan Higdon’s 2-yard scoring run to cap a four-play, 51-yard drive with 7:07 left in the third quarter. But Ohio State’s Chris Worley blocked the extra point.
Michigan’s Chris Evans had 67 yards on 11 carries and Higdon had 55 yards rushing on 11 attempts.