Terrelle Pryor hooked up with Dane Sanzenbacher on two early touchdown passes and No. 11 Ohio State defused Toledo's high-scoring spread attack to beat the Rockets 38-0 Saturday at Cleveland Browns Stadium.
It was a resounding response after a week of criticism and sniping in the wake of the Buckeyes' 18-15 loss to No. 3 Southern California.
Leading an Ohio State (2-1) offense that was relatively punchless a week earlier, Pryor feasted on a Toledo unit giving up 45 points and almost 500 yards a game. He passed for three scores, completing 17 of 28 passes for 262 yards, including a 76-yard strike to Sanzenbacher on the Buckeyes' third offensive play and an 18-yard TD on their next possession. He also ran for 110 yards on 12 carries, including a touchdown.
Toledo (1-2) quarterback Aaron Opelt, who came in leading the nation in total offense with 437 yards a game, was harried all day. He was sacked twice and hurried 10 times while completing 22 of 45 passes for 197 yards with an interception.
With Ohio State's front wall bearing down on him, he had to throw the ball away on four of the Rockets' first six plays. It didn't get much better after that as they managed just 210 yards.
The game marked only the second appearance in Cleveland for either school.
Dan Herron ran for a 4-yard score and DeVier Posey also caught a TD pass from Pryor, who had two interceptions. The Buckeyes open Big Ten play at home against Illinois next week.
In the wake of the loss to USC, Ohio State fans were critical of coach Jim Tressel, complaining about his conservative approach and predictable play-calling. But a decidedly pro-Buckeyes crowd of 71,727 roared its approval as their team steamrolled through the Rockets, who were hopeful of adding another big upset to their resume after tripping up Michigan 13-10 a year ago.
On third and 7 from his own 24 on Ohio State's first possession, Pryor flipped a pass over the middle to a wide-open Sanzenbacher. He split the secondary and raced the distance.
Pryor _ who was hesitant to run and seldom threw longer than 10 yards in the first two games _ rushed for two first downs and passed 12 yards to Duron Carter for another the second time Ohio State had the ball. That helped set up a quick look-in pass to Sanzenbacher, who was sandwiched by defensive backs but pulled in the ball to make it 14-0.
After the Buckeyes built a 24-0 halftime lead, Pryor showed the running ability that had made him the most sought-after college recruit in the nation two years ago. He bootlegged around right end and had clear sailing while picking up 43 yards, and later scored on a 1-yard keeper.
Tressel chided Ohio State's fans earlier this week, saying he felt bad about how "miserable" they were after the USC defeat. A sign on a scarlet-and-gray bus parked near Browns Stadium listed the six straight top-10 teams that have beaten the Buckeyes since 2006. Next to the list was written, "Miserable OSU fans."
The Buckeyes seemed committed to making the Rockets _ particularly Opelt _ miserable.
Early in the fourth quarter, Opelt hit Eric Page with a pass at the 6 but he was hit by Kurt Coleman and fumbled at the goal line, with linebacker Ross Homan recovering for a touchback.
It was that kind of a day for the Rockets.