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Ohio State-Marshall opener moves to Thursday

COLUMBUS — For the first time in 13 years, Ohio State will be playing a home football game on something other than a Saturday.

The Buckeyes’ 2010 season opener against Marshall, originally scheduled for Sept. 4, has been moved up two days to a Thursday night.

“The Thursday night before Labor Day is a great night to play,” coach Jim Tressel said in a statement issued through the school’s sports information department. “To be one of the first games that kicks off the 2010 season will be exciting.”

Athletic director Gene Smith announced the change in an e-mail on Wednesday.

“This change to a Thursday night opener offers a number of positives for Ohio State,” Smith said.

Summer quarter classes end a week earlier, so that isn’t a factor in the decision.

“Along with providing maximum national exposure for our Rose Bowl champions, this unique starting date and time allows our team and fans to escape the heat of the day, and breaks up a string of four consecutive Saturday home games to start the season,” Smith said. “It will allow fans to enjoy other events throughout the Labor Day weekend. We see it as a treat for Buckeye fans and an exciting way to open the 2010 campaign.”

Ohio State’s last non-Saturday regular season home game was in 1997, a season-opening 24-10 win over Wyoming that was also played on a Thursday evening.

Kickoff time and television plans will be announced at a later date.