Sports

No. 7 Ohio State says it is focused on Michigan, yet also knows Big Ten title game is looming

  • FILE - In this Nov. 24, 2012, file photo, Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer, center, gets doused by senior wide receiver Jake Stoneburner (11) after a win over Michigan in an NCAA college football game in Columbus, Ohio. Every year except one from 1935-2012, the Ohio State Buckeyes were able to focus entirely on their annual season-ending rivalry with Michigan. But now, for the second year in a row, not only do they have the Wolverines to deal with but also the Big Ten title game looming a week later. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan, File)

    FILE - In this Nov. 24, 2012, file photo, Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer, center, gets doused by senior wide receiver Jake Stoneburner (11) after a win over Michigan in an NCAA college football game in Columbus, Ohio. Every year except one from 1935-2012, the Ohio State Buckeyes were able to focus entirely on their annual season-ending rivalry with Michigan. But now, for the second year in a row, not only do they have the Wolverines to deal with but also the Big Ten title game looming a week later. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Nov. 9, 2014, file photo, Ohio State's Jeff Heuerman (5), coach Urban Meyer, right, and Meyer's wife, Shelley, celebrate following the team's 49-37 win over Michigan State in an NCAA college football game in East Lansing, Mich. Every year except one from 1935-2012, the Ohio State Buckeyes were able to focus entirely on their annual season-ending rivalry with Michigan. But now, for the second year in a row, not only do they have the Wolverines to deal with but also the Big Ten title game looming a week later. (AP Photo/Al Goldis, File)

    FILE - In this Nov. 9, 2014, file photo, Ohio State's Jeff Heuerman (5), coach Urban Meyer, right, and Meyer's wife, Shelley, celebrate following the team's 49-37 win over Michigan State in an NCAA college football game in East Lansing, Mich. Every year except one from 1935-2012, the Ohio State Buckeyes were able to focus entirely on their annual season-ending rivalry with Michigan. But now, for the second year in a row, not only do they have the Wolverines to deal with but also the Big Ten title game looming a week later. (AP Photo/Al Goldis, File)  (The Associated Press)

Every year except one from 1935 to 2012, the Ohio State Buckeyes were able to focus entirely on their annual season-ending rivalry with Michigan.

But now, for the second year in a row, their most important and emotional regular-season game will be followed by a trip to the Big Ten championship a week later.

The Buckeyes barely dispatched Michigan in their backdoor struggle a year ago, then turned around and had a 24-game winning streak ended the following week when they lost 34-24 to Michigan State in their first appearance in the conference title game.

There's no doubt the seventh-ranked Buckeyes (10-1, 7-0 Big Ten, No. 6 CFP) are concentrating on the Wolverines (5-6, 3-4) this week. But they also know they have another big game just around the corner.