Imagine it's Oct. 10, 1987. Ronald Reagan is still president, and "Here I Go Again" by Whitesnake is the No. 1 song in the United States.
Indiana overwhelmed Ohio State 31-10 in Columbus, the first time the Hoosiers beat the Buckeyes in 31 games. Then-Ohio State head coach Earle Bruce said, "This is the darkest day in Ohio State football since I have been associated with it."
The Hoosiers repeated in 1988, blazing past Ohio State 41-7. The Buckeyes barely beat them in 1989 (35-31), and the two tied in 1990 (27-27).
From 1991 to 2019, Ohio State has won every game against Indiana. With the two being undefeated and in the top 10, the Hoosiers are looking for the "Darkest Day III" on Saturday.
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No. 9 Indiana (4-0) has had the upper hand this season because they're been able to play for four straight weeks while No. 3 Ohio State (3-0) has only played three games after Maryland's COVID-19 problems forced a canceled game.
Indiana's journey to the top 10 began with a last-minute OT victory over Penn State, who was expected to be a powerhouse this season. Their march continued with a 37-21 win over Rutgers, 38-21 victory over Michigan (their first since 1987) and sweeping Michigan State 24-0 last weekend.
In the Hoosiers' first four games, 37.8% of their offensive points have come off turnovers—the second highest rate in the country. The average distance of Indiana's touchdown drives, partly due to forced turnovers, has been 53.2 yards. They have forced 12 turnovers so far this season.
Ohio State beat Nebraska, Penn State and Rutgers before Maryland's COVID-19 cases kept them from playing last weekend. Quarterback Justin Fields has as many passing touchdowns as incompletions (11), with zero interceptions.
His 86.7% completion percentage is the best three-game start to a season (min. 50 attempts) by anyone in college football since 2000, according to Wyatt Crosher on Buckeye Sports Bulletin. Last year's Heisman winner, Joe Burrow, had an 83.3% completion rate in his first three games.