Fourth-down play still eats at Hyde
JUN 24, 2014 3:40p ET
BEREA, Ohio - The fourth down stop that sealed Michigan State's win in last December's Big Ten Championship Game and ended Ohio State's national championship dreams apparently still eats at Carlos Hyde.
With Ohio State down three points and facing a fourth and one with just under six minutes left in that game, the call from the sideline was for quarterback Braxton Miller to keep the ball instead of letting Hyde, one of the nation's best between-the-tackles runners, try to pick up the first down.
Miller kept the ball, Michigan State's Denicos Allen stopped him short of the line to gain and the Spartans then added another touchdown while killing the clock.
It was the first loss for Ohio State in two seasons under Urban Meyer.
"I actually still think about that Michigan State game and that fourth and one," Hyde said Tuesday morning at an NFL Rookie Symposium youth football clinic.
Hyde had been asked if the two losses the Buckeyes suffered at the end of last season -- they went to the Orange Bowl and lost to Clemson after losing their shot to play for the national title -- had soured how he felt about the 2012 and 2013 seasons at Ohio State.
"Pretty much I feel like it was that one play or we could have been on our way to the national championship," Hyde said. "I mean, you know, it's a lesson learned.
Shortly thereafter, Hyde walked away from the 10 or so reporters and cameras who were circled around him.
So, we're left to presume he still wishes he'd gotten the ball.
Speaking in Northeast Ohio last spring, Michigan State Mark Dantonio said his staff felt the Buckeyes would stick with Miller on the fourth down play and prepared accordingly.
Hyde -- drafted in the second round by the San Francisco 49ers -- and the rest of the rookies drafted by NFC teams last month have been in Northeast Ohio since Sunday for the NFL Rookie Symposium. The AFC draftees arrived Wednesday for their portion of the same event.
Before walking away from the interview, Hyde said he was fortunate to be selected by "a great organization" like the 49ers and that he thought the symposium experience had been beneficial. He was also asked his expectations for the 2014 Buckeyes.
"I'm expecting them to win it all," Hyde said.