The Ohio State University hits the road for the first time in 2013, playing at California Saturday night.
The Buckeyes, who are ranked fourth in the AP poll, are seeking their third straight win this season and 15th overall.
It won’t be easy.
Here are five points for the game:
1. The big question is if OSU quarterback and Heisman Trophy candidate Braxton Miller will play.
Miller hurt his knee in the first quarter against San Diego State Sept. 7 and didn’t return.
If Miller plays, then the assumption he is healthy enough to go.
If not, back up Kenny Guiton is more than capable of running the Buckeyes.
Guiton has been in the program for five years. He’s been through three coaches.
Guiton guided the Buckeyes to 445 total yards and six touchdowns in the 42-7 win over the Aztecs.
Coach Urban Meyer affectionately calls him “the right-hander out of the bullpen.’’
If Miller doesn’t play, will this hurt his Heisman chances? It can’t help, especially with the competition in the nation.
2. OSU is facing the Golden Bears for the seventh time. They are 6-1, winning last season 35-28 at Ohio Stadium.
The Buckeyes are 2-2 since 2008 against Pacific-12 foes.
Cal, 1-1, is led by true freshman Jared Goff, who needs the nation with 930 yards passing to go with four touchdown and three interceptions.
Thirteen different Bears have caught at least one pass through two games this season, led by Bryce Treggs with 21 receptions and 266 yards.
First-year coach Sonny Dykes is 23-16 in his career, spending the last three season at Louisiana Tech.
3. The Buckeyes have lost their last two non-conference road games — 24-6 against Miami in 2011 and 35-3 against USC in 2008.
They had won the prior three.
4. The young OSU defense got a boost with the return of senior safety C.J. Barnett and junior cornerback Bradley Roby against San Diego State.
Barnett posted seven tackles and Roby contributed four.
OSU’s defense is ranked 18th nationally in total defense, allowing 269 yards per game. The rush defense is giving up 68.9 yards per contest, which rank ninth nationally.
5. The Buckeyes have 17 penalties through two games, including roughing the punter penalties for two straight weeks.
OSU wins 35-17