It’s unlikely that Dwayne Haskins, Ohio State’s backup quarterback, expected to see any playing time Saturday when he arrived at Michigan University. Considering the historic rivalry between the two schools, and each team’s own respective reasons to hunger for the win, it was looking certain that starting QB, J.T. Barrett, would lead the offensive line. And he did, at least until the third quarter.

Barrett out, Haskins in

The Buckeyes were down 20-14 when Barrett went down on his right knee and was then hit from behind. “Another Michigan player [then] fell on him,” according to SB Nation, and it was clear that the 22-year-old was hurting.

He was eventually able to get to his feet but retreated, limping, to the locker room where he sat out the remainder of the game. Later, Barrett was said to be dealing with an injury to his meniscus, a piece of cartilage in the knee.

The Bucks called in backup and in came Haskins, a 6’3, 214 lb., red-shirt freshman to take over. It wasn’t long before he led a touchdown drive, keeping hope alive for Buckeye fans. By the end of the third quarter, OSU was up 21-20 and Coach Urban Meyer was looking more and more optimistic.

Ironically, the Wolverines were also relying on their backup QB, John O’Korn, since starter Wilton Speight was injured in August. O’Korn had played in eight games since then, though.

Haskins, on the other hand, was making his debut against the Buckeyes’ greatest rival on the Wolverines’ turf.

The fourth quarter was his chance to ring in a solid lead. To Ohio’s delight, the New Jersey native, who graduated high school in Maryland, did not disappoint.

A happy ending for Haskins

The team cruised through most of the final quarter with a four-point lead at 24-20, thanks to a field goal.

Then, with less than two minutes left, Haskins handed it off to running back Mike Weber who carried it 25 yards into the end zone. When kicker Sean Nuernberger sent the ball sailing through the goal posts for the extra point, the nail was in the coffin for a final score of 31-20, OSU.

“It’s so surreal. I don’t know what to say,” Haskins gushed in a post-game interview.

“I had an opportunity ... [Barrett] got hurt but I [made] the most of it. It’s a dream come true."

Time will tell how long Barrett’s injury keeps him off the field. Evidently, the damage was set in motion before the game due to an accident with a cameraman, SB Nation reported. But in the meantime, Haskins has proven his potential to be an effective Buckeyes QB.