The Big Ten ended a streak of six consecutive losses in the Rose Bowl and six consecutive BCS bowls overall with an impressive 26-17 victory over Oregon.
And a miserable Pac-10 bowl season ends at 2-5.
How the game was won: It was won by a thoughtful mixture of (Jim) Tressel-ball and a "hello world" moment for Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor, who dominated the game with his arm and his feet. It wasn't quite Vince Young, but it's not unreasonable to recall Young's sophomore performance in the 2005 Rose Bowl against Michigan. What did Young do the next year?
Turning point: Trailing 19-17, Oregon faced a second-and-2 from the Buckeyes 18 yard line. But LeGarrette Blount couldn't handle a hand-off from Jeremiah Masoli and Ohio State recovered the fumble. From that point on, the Buckeyes took control.
Stat of the game: Ohio State was 11 for 21 on third down. Oregon was 2 for 11. The Ducks couldn't get the Buckeyes off the field. And they couldn't convert and keep drives alive.
Player of the game: Pryor completed 23 of 37 passes for 266 yards with two touchdowns and one fairly meaningless interception. He also rushed for 72 yards on 20 carries.
Unsung hero of the game: Ohio State's pass defense. Oregon is a run-first team, but most of the season in effectively mixed in the pass. Not tonight. Masoli completed 9 of 20 for 81 yards with an interception.
What it means: It means the maligned Big Ten improves to 3-2 on the bowl season and earns redemption for its recent run of bad performances in big games. Meanwhile, the Pac-10 licks its wounds after an embarrassing performance during the bowls. As for moving forward, both teams figure to be back in the thick of things next year. Both teams welcome back a lot of guys, including Pryor and Masoli.