Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- If there's one positive that comes out of Ohio State's subpar performance, it's that the defense is making plays again.
The nation's No. 1 total defense and scoring defense in 2007 had taken some heat for not forcing enough turnovers. The unit's takeaway skills today might have prevented a crushing upset loss.
After claiming its first lead since midway through the second quarter on a Brandon Saine touchdown run, superstar linebackers Marcus Freeman and James Laurinaitis teamed up to stop a promising Ohio drive. Freeman perfectly read Ohio quarterback Boo Jackson and tipped a pass with both hands. Laurinaitis dove for the interception at the Ohio State 35-yard line. The takeaways are making up for some spotty third-down defense.
The Bobcats have committed four turnovers, and Ohio State's Ray Small likely put this one out of reach with a 70-yard punt return for a touchdown.
I'm heading down to the field but will be back later with plenty more updates.