It’s championship week here at tBBC, and we’ll have all your B1G Tournament coverage coming up until the Buckeyes cut down the nets. So, it only makes sense, then, to have our soundtrack for today be the latest from OSU alum and friend of the site Mekka Don, who’s scored an exclusive deal to provide music for their coverage. From the press release:
The intersection of music and sports is prominently on display during high profile sporting events. Almost every sports arena has a DJ; players submit playlists to be played during warmups; and networks license music to help create excitement for their broadcasting. Mekka Don, an independent hip-hop artist and former NCAA athlete (Ohio State football), has inked a multi-song licensing deal with the Big Ten Network to provide music for the upcoming Big Ten Tournament games and coverage. The Big Ten Tournament begins on March 14th on the Big Ten Network.
And here, in an exclusive for tBBC readers, is the the title track for tournament time:
You can support Mekka Don and download this at his site on iTunes… just in time for March’s Madness.
Welcome Back? Rumors have been swirling all week that former Buckeye Defensive Coordinator Jim Heacock would be returning to the WHAC in a “quality control” capacity; huge tip, it seems, to Nevadabuck from the Scout site for dropping the knowledge first. The position would be similar to what a number of schools (most specifically Alabama) are doing in expanding their staff, and you’ve got to think that it will not only strengthen the Silver Bullets but also maintain the relationships that Heacock had with area high school coaches. In addition, it provides a fallback of sorts should the defensive staff lose a member to another opportunity.
Well, here we are, at the second biggest shopping day of the holiday and fiscal season. It’s kind of sad, really- all those unwanted or mis- purchased gifts being dragged back to the mall, where “Good Will To Men” is certainly in short supply.
That being said… how hard is it to follow a list? And what part of “bullets” looks like “marbles”… grumble grumble grumble. Given what’s in the theaters beginning yesterday, you’ve got two choices for today’s soundtrack.
I know that is a very loaded title, but I feel it best suits my current thoughts.
I understand the Mark May’s and Desmond Howard’s of the world taking every chance they get to smear the Ohio State University and our transgressions- they have been waiting for this day for so long. We have been a top program for the last decade and America likes to see the giant fall.
If it was Michigan, Florida, Texas, Oregon, Auburn we would probably jump on that train as well; unless you are of the opinion those that live in glass houses don’t throw stones. Those are the haters that you brush off though, because they always do so out of spite and dislike and they never go away. It hurts sometimes to be the brunt of jokes, but get back to doing what we should be and everything will be fine.
What is hard to fathom is how we handle our own. How many ex-Buckeye players, media, or fans have you heard badmouth Coach Tressel and Terrelle Pryor, for example? Or what about “snitching” or calling for the heads of your own president to be turned over on a silver platter? I completely understand some constructive criticism, but comments like “fake buckeye”, “I hate so and so”, “This player should be kicked off the team”, etc. coming from our own fans hurt.
believe in the buckeyes, you won’t regret it
I think it’s safe to say that football fans across the country have never seen anything like this. When everything hit the fan on Monday, and Jim Tressel had turned in his resignation papers, a nation came together.
We mourned. We wanted to know why. Some of us might have even began doubting the characteristics we’ve grown to love from our former head coach. Others were cursing the Ohio State administration for allowing the Senator to fall on the sword.
All in all though, fans, former and current players, as well as fellow coaches around the country displayed something that may have never been witnessed in college or professional sports.
A garnering of how Jim Tressel affected many people, not only on the football field, but in life.
The Buckeye Battle Cry will be counting down the Top 25 players of the past decade all spring/summer. Every Monday and Thursday, Jim will be announcing a new player. Our #1 player will be presented on Monday, August 30th. Three days later, the 2010 season officially begins. To view the previous entries in our Top 25, click here.
Beanie Wells was a big, bruising back who did not hesitate to run a defender over. He also had the speed and quickness to make a cut and be past the defender before they knew what happened. His elite combination of size and speed made him a once in a generation talent and one of the greatest backs ever at Ohio State.
Unfortunately, his bruising running style also led to his greatest weakness; injuries. Constant battles with health issues nagged Wells throughout his career, particularly during his junior season. These health problems led to some serious offensive struggles for Ohio State in his absence, and also prevented him from challenging for the title of greatest ever at Ohio State. Read More
Later this evening, we’ll have a wrap up of today’s news and notes, but it would be a failure of epic proportions to not honor #28 in our countdown:
And you can’t forget that a man that large can fly:
Our friends over at MotSaG beat us to the punch on this one, pointing to the greatest collection of stiff arms ever seen:
#5 USC’s new defense.
I don’t know if anyone has noticed this amidst the gnashing of teeth and pulling of hair in the aftermath of the Navy game, but USC only has three returning starters on defense this year.
This isn’t the same defense that throttled the Buckeyes last year.
I am not saying that USC can’t be good, or even great, on defense this year, but there will be a lot of new faces, and they will be playing in a high pressure environment on the road (some for the first time) in the second game of the year, and they will be trying to tackle Terrelle Pryor.
USC recruits better than anyone in the country, so you know that all of the new faces are going to be good, and they do have quite a few players who have started some games, but you can’t teach athletes to handle the immense levels of pressure that they are going to face in this game.
This defense has not proven itself in the type of environment or under the pressure that they are going to see on Saturday night and that is a good thing for Ohio State.
#4 Matt Barkley is a true freshman.
I don’t care how good this kid is, if Ohio State pressures him he will make mistakes.
you break the huddle, run up to the line and get under center, it is 3rd and long, the crowd is so loud you can’t hear yourself think, your ears are ringing and your shoulder is still stiff from the hit you took from Thaddeus Gibson on the last play (a screen pass which Brian Rolle blew up for a two yard loss), you scan the line, is the middle linebacker showing blitz? are the corners in press coverage or zone? oh god, Gibson knows we are passing, here he comes again *oh wait* I am supposed to be reading the coverage right now, shit, are they showing man coverage? wait, they are dropping back, this must be zone, am I supposed to call an audible when that happens? damnit, I wish this crowd would quiet down, jesus, my receivers can’t hear the audible anyway even if I did call one…oh well… HIKE!
Yeah, welcome to The Shoe Matt Barkley, I think you will find it a little tougher than running up a ramp, ass.
#3 The Shoe
The Shoe can be a pretty intimidating place (see my awesome reenactment above and the pretty photo). It is one of the top 5 most intimidating atmospheres in college football and if the crowd is fired up and into the game, the home field advantage that is experienced by Ohio State is going to be huge.
#2 Terrelle Pryor
Last year, Terrelle Pryor was thrown into the fire and he performed remarkably well for a true freshman. What makes Pryor’s performance last year even more remarkable is the fact that he did it in an offense that had practiced for the entire offseason (not to mention the entire 2007 season) handing the ball off to Beanie Wells.
A lot of people have criticized Jim Bollman and Jim Tressel for a lack of creativity on offense. Well, when you have Beanie in the backfield (not to mention Todd Boeckman at QB) who can blame them for pounding the ball between the tackles.
This year, the handcuffs come off. It may seem like a long time ago, but if you will recall the 2006 offense was quite dynamic. Bollman and Tressel can get creative if they have the right personnel. If Terrelle Pryor isn’t the right personnel for some creativity on offense I don’t know what is.
So, with an entire offseason to mold the offense to take advantage of Terrelle Pryor’s skill set (last year it was a work in progress/hybrid between taking advantage of Beanie and Pryor the entire year, which partially explains the lack of production in my opinion) I expect some creativity a la 2006 and a much more dynamic offense this season.
Think about how much defenses struggled to stop Pryor last year in an offense designed for Todd Boeckman and Beanie. Think about an off season of work molding the offense for Pryor. Think about Pryor’s improvement as a passer. Smile.
#1 USC struggles on the road.
You read that right (gasp!), USC struggles at something. In fact, I went back and looked at USC’s road games over the last two years and found some interesting results.
In 2008 USC lost on the road (at night) against a 9-4 Oregon State team in front of 46,000 fans. They also won a close game (17-10) on the road against an 8-5 Arizona team in front of a whopping 56,000 fans.
The rest of their road games last year were against 5-7 Virginia, 2-11 Washington State, 5-7 Stanford, and 4-8 UCLA. If you see any challenges in there let me know.
In 2007 USC lost on the road to a 9-4 Oregon team at Autzen Stadium. While Auzten is known to be one of the louder venues in college football, it still only holds 54,000 fans.
They had trouble with a 4-9 Washington team (you know, that awful team that we took so much heat for having the audacity to schedule) pulling out the close victory 27-24 at Washington in front of a crowd of 72,500.
They also struggled to put away a 7-6 California team on the road in front of 76,000 fans, eventually pulling out the victory 24-17.
The rest of their road games in 2007 were against 5-7 Nebraska, 3-9 Notre Dame (haha), and a 10-3 Arizona State team that they beat 44-24 (wow, that seems like it might be a quality road win!).
So, uhhh, notice a pattern here.
First of all, they haven’t played in front of nearly as many people or experienced nearly the crowd noise that they will on Saturday (see #3).
Second of all, USC has clearly struggled on the road over the past two seasons. Combine that with #5 and # 4 and you will have to excuse me, but can someone please remind me why we are the underdogs again?
I don’t know what is getting into me, but as this game approaches I am starting to feel pretty damn confident.
Actually, since Jim’s blocked punt in the 1979 MACh1gAAn game led to another loss by TTUN, and since we seem to be making a lot of friends from “bluer” websites, let’s take day five in a different direction.
As in the last five versions of The Game:
2004- 37 to 21 Troy and Teddy lead to the upset of the #7 team in the nation.
2005- 25 to 21 “The Catch”. Oh, and the amazing tackle by Shawn Crable on Ohio State’s last score.
2007- 14 to 3 All Beanie, All Day. Plus, Jake Long allows Chad Henne into the Gun Show that is Vernon Gholston.
2008- 42 to 7 Goodbye, Beanie. Hello, Boom and Terrelle.
Just think, if they hadn’t been breaking all of those practice and training rules, they would have been shut out.
To be honest, the best thing about day five is that next year we’ll be able to use this template for countdown day six.