- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Line: Ohio State by 28 1/2.

Series Record: Ohio State leads 1-0.

Last Meeting: 2004, Ohio State 24-21.

What’s at Stake

Marshall wants to get off to a good start under new head coach Doc Holliday. Ohio State is out to preserve its lofty ranking heading into a showdown with No. 13 Miami on Sept. 11 at Ohio Stadium.

Key Matchup

Ohio State QB Terrelle Pryor against Marshall’s defense, led by LB Mario Harvey. The Thundering Herd return six starters from last year’s 7-6 team that surrendered 52 points apiece to Virginia Tech and UTEP. Pryor believes he’s more mature, makes better decisions and has refined his throwing motion. Marshall’s hopes ride on whether all that is true.

Players to Watch

Marshall: Lee Smith, 6-foot-6 and 267 pounds, is one of the top tight ends in America. Can QB Brian Anderson avoid Ohio State’s pressure by dumping the ball off to the SUV-sized receiver?

Ohio State: Tyler Moeller gets the start at the “star” spot, a hybrid of linebacker and safety. Moeller missed all of last season after he was punched in a Florida bar and suffered a fractured skull and brain injuries. He’s been inflicting some big hits in practice and now wants to make up for all that lost time.

Facts & Figures

Marshall beat Ohio _ a distinctly different proposition from upstate bully Ohio State _ in its most recent game, last year’s Little Caesars Pizza Bowl. … It’ll be crowded for the coin flip when Ohio State sends out six captains _ matching its most in 121 years of intercollegiate football. … Marshall is observing the 40th anniversary this season of the tragic plane crash that took the lives of 75 people, mostly players, on Nov. 14, 1970. … This is the first time Ohio State has played a home game on a non-Saturday since beating Wyoming 24-10 in 1997, also a Thursday night season opener. … Thundering Herd backup LB George Carpenter is the younger brother of former Ohio State star Bobby Carpenter. In addition, Marshall assistant coach Zack Smith is the grandson of ex-Ohio State head coach Earle Bruce.

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