Ohio State head Urban Meyer before Saturday's game against Maryland. BLADE/JEREMY WADSWORTH
COLUMBUS — Denzel Ward’s ejection drew thousands of boos Saturday at Ohio Stadium, and as it turns out, the dissenters had a point.
Ohio State coach Urban Meyer said Tuesday that the Big Ten acknowledged that Ward should not have been disqualified against Maryland.
Referees flagged Ward, Ohio State’s No. 1 cornerback, for targeting on a first-quarter play. Ward laid a crushing hit on Terrapins wide receiver Taivon Jacobs and dislodged the ball, which he picked up before the officials ruled the play was an incomplete pass.
Ward’s hit was legal, and even after the mandatory video review on a targeting penalty, the replay official confirmed the call on the field.
Despite Ohio State’s protests and video reviews that showed Ward did not lead with his head nor make contact with Jacobs’ head, Ward was ejected.
“It was an error,” Meyer said.
Meyer said he was “irate” at the call, and his staff submitted a complaint to the Big Ten, which he said told him that the call on the field should have been overturned, and Ward should have been allowed to remain in the game.
Asked if he was concerned about a similar mistake creeping up in a more competitive game, Meyer did not hold back.
“Concerned, irate — all of the above," he said. "Yeah, it's not the person on the field. Those are snap judgments. I still to this day don't understand how that happens, but that's for the higher-ups to figure out. ‘Concerned’ is probably not strong enough."
The Buckeyes went on to win the game 62-14.
No. 9 Ohio State will continue Big Ten play with a road game at Nebraska this week.