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But on Ohio State's next possession, which featured some nifty running by third-team Tailback Jim Gayle, who gained 72 yards on the day, the Buckeyes finally squeezed out a 23-yard field goal by Janakievski to make it 3-0 with 3:48 to play in the half.
At which point Wangler came in for Hewlett, who had injured his left ankle, and on his fifth play Wangler threw a spectacular pass to freshman Anthony Carter for a 59-yard touchdown. But then, with only 1:30 left in the half, Schlichter put on a display of masterful passing. Throwing into the teeth of the Wolverines' prevent defense, he drove the Bucks 72 yards in eight plays, ultimately settling for Janakievski's second field goal, a 25-yarder.
In the third quarter Schlichter finally got it done. On third down at the Michigan 18, he unloaded a pass toward Split End Chuck Hunter racing for the corner flag. Defensive Back Mike Jolly tipped the ball, but Hunter reached out with his left hand and somehow held on even as he tumbled to the ground at the corner of the end zone. The long TD drought was over. Said Hunter, with a straight face, "I was playing for the tip." But Jolly intercepted a pass for a 2-point conversion attempt, so the score was Ohio State 12, Michigan 7.
Wangler trotted back on the field and again connected with Carter, this time for a 66-yard gainer. Five plays later, Roosevelt Smith rammed the ball barely across the goal line from the one to put the Wolverines back on top. Smith took it in for a 2-point conversion to put Michigan a head 15-12.
Then disaster struck the Wolverines. With 11:21 to play in the game, Virgil came in to punt from his own 38. Ten Ohio State players massed at the line of scrimmage, intent on blocking the kick instead of setting up a runback. It was Linebacker Laughlin who came through the left side untouched to block the kick. He had been crashing in through the right all year, but Bruce decided to switch him, guessing that Michigan would have been prepared for him in his normal route. Laughlin leaped and the ball hit both forearms. Buckeye Safety Vince Skillings tried to pick up the ball but only kicked it, and it wobbled toward the goal, before taking a big hop directly into the arms of Ohio State Linebacker Todd Bell, who ran it in from the 18-yard line. Afterward a grinning Bell wore a button that read PRAISE THE LORD. Michigan was doomed when Ohio State—thanks again to some astute Schlichter quarterbacking and running—controlled the ball for all but 17 seconds of the last 5:24. All told, Ohio State had gained 432 yards to Michigan's 298.
Afterward, Schembechler said, "The point is that our kicking game has been disastrous. With a decent kicker, well, I don't say we'd be undefeated [the Wolverines are 8-3], but we'd sure be better. I'll tell you, if I were the greatest high school kicker in the country, I'd contact Schembechler, because he's definitely interested."
Meanwhile, back on the farm, Mila Schlichter was asked how good she thinks her boy Art is, and she said, "I just hope he's a good person." For his part, Art put his feet up his days of adversity well behind him, and smiled his unaffected all-American hero smile. "All this is a dream come true," he said. "Is that corny?" Nope.