CHAMPAIGN, IL - OCTOBER 15: Christian Bryant #2 of the Ohio State Buckeyes breakups a pass intended for Matt LaCosse #40 of the Illinois Fighting Illini at Memorial Stadium on October 15, 2011 in Champaign, Illinois. Ohio State defeated Illinois 17-7. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Ohio State Vs. Illinois Final Score: Another Unbeaten Down, 17-7

The herd of undefeated teams was thinned a little bit by Ohio State on Saturday.

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Illinois Vs. Ohio State Final Score: Buckeyes Hand Illini Ugly First Loss, 17-7

Ohio State could have been forgiven for giving up on its year at any number of points in the 2011 college football season so far. But the Buckeyes haven't, and staged a Big Ten upset this Saturday by shutting down Illinois, 17-7, and handing the Illini their first loss of 2011.

It wasn't pretty. The Buckeyes relied on a patient, unspectacular running game (51 carries, 211 yards) led by Dan Herron (23 carries, 114 yards) and a defense that gave its offense good field position. Ohio State drove more than 50 yards just once, and punted in Illinois territory to end that drive.

Freshman quarterback Braxton Miller, recovering from an injury that knocked him out of last week's loss to Nebraska and marked the turning point in that game, threw just four passes and completed just one, but that completion was a 17-yard touchdown to Jake Stoneburner, and his 35-yard run was the longest play of Ohio State's afternoon.

Illinois' offense may have been even less inspiring. The Illini were held to under 300 yards, their second such outing in 2011, and three turnovers scuttled the offense's chances to catch up to the slightly faster turtle. Oh, and the Illini went for it on fourth down while down 10 points with a bit more than a minute to go; their failure ensured Ohio State's victory.

The loss is Illinois' first on the year; the win is Ohio State's first in Big Ten play in 2011. With the result, Wisconsin is the lone unbeaten left in the Big Ten.

For more on the Illini head over to the SB Nation blog Hail to the Orange. For more on the Buckeyes, check out Along the Olentangy. For more on Saturday's action, check out the Week 7 college football scores and news StoryStream.


Ohio State Vs. Illinois Score: Field Goal Lone Score In Battle Of Punt Teams

The game between the Ohio State Buckeyes and Illinois Fighting Illini wasn't expected to be a high-scoring affair between the two Big Ten teams. Most probably expected more than a field goal, six punts and a fumble through the first eight drives of the game, however, as the Buckeyes find themselves up 3-0 midway through the second quarter.

The Buckeyes were able to get their field on the first drive of the game as a healthy dose of running backs Dan Herron and Jordan Hall, along with the feet of quarterback Braxton Miller, led the Buckeyes down the field and into the range of kicker Drew Basil. Following Basil's 43-yard field goal, however, the game has shown quite a bit of offensive ineptitude.

The Illini have punted on all five of their possessions to this point and the Buckeyes have thrown just one pass -- an incompletion from Miller after the quarterback has rushed seven times for five total yards. It's pretty difficult to tell that either team is ranked, let alone knowing Illinois is undefeated to this point in the season.

For further reading, news, discussion and more, visit Illinois blog Hail To The Orange and Ohio State blog Along The Olentangy. Stay tuned to SB Nation's college football news hub for more.


Ohio State Vs. Illinois TV Schedule, Spread, Game Time And More

No. 16 Illinois attempts to remain undefeated against the Ohio State Buckeyes on Saturday in Champaign.

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