A bit of a damper on the July 4th celebration, as Andy Griffith passed away on Tuesday. Since he represented a slice of America for so many folks, it only makes sense that he’d leave us this close to America’s birthday.
In this week’s edition of news and notes, we take a look at the ever swirling world of college “playoffs”; helping you get to the bottom of the matter. You can probably guess where this is headed…
(Gee) knows more about bow ties than he does about journalism.
Probably true, but since Gordo is a fifteenth level bow-tie ninja, what does that say about your point?
OT J.B. Shugarts (seventh or free agent): Good size, but had false start and some foot problems with the Buckeyes.
Back with another preview this one of the Grandaddy of them all. It feels odd that this game is not on today on New Year’s Day.
The Basics: Monday, January 2nd from Pasadena California at 5:00 PM EST. The game will be televised on ESPN. Wisconsin (11-2) and Oregon (11-2).
History: The Rose Bowl is just oozing with History and probably the bowl game that us Big Ten fans know the most about. It usually pits the winners of the Pac-10 and the Big 10, unless of course either of those teams make the NC game. Probably one of the best Ohio State memories comes from the 1997 Rose Bowl when our Buckeyes defeated Arizona St. and Jake Plummer when Joe Germaine hit David Boston in the corner of the endzone. The Rose bowl started in 1902 and has been played at the Rose Bowl stadium ever since it was built in 1922. Oh, and there’s also the yearly Rose Bowl parade as well that usually takes place on New Years day.
Wisconsin: Wisconsin is a team that at one point in the season had hopes of playing in the NC after the off-season transfer of Russell Wilson to Quarterback the Badgers. This was until Michigan State beat them on Hail Mary, which was followed up the following week by Braxton Miller’s back foot throw in the last minute to Devin Smith. Wisconsin was then able to finish out the season, and win the B1G.
The Badgers are led by a huge offensive line on offense. They pave the way for Montee Ball who led the Badgers with 1,759 yds and 32 tds. Ball finished the season with 38 total tds which is one short of the FBS record set by Barry Sanders. Russell Wilson also has Nick Toon to throw the ball too, who has turned out to be a very good college receiver. Wisconsin will be looking to avenge last years Rose Bowl lose to TCU. The game will fall on the shoulders of their Offense to be able to put up plenty of points as well as their D to try and slow down the high powered Oregon offense. Wisconsin is not to be outdone by Oregon’s new uniforms (more later) with the unveiling of their new Adidas uniforms for the Rose Bowl game.
Oregon: The Ducks also have a big play maker that totes the rock in LaMichael James. He led the country with 149.7 yds / game. They are led on offense by Daron Thomas at QB. Oregon also possesses two more threats out of the backfield with Kenjon Barner and De’Anthony Thomas. Thomas is also the leading receiver for the Ducks. Oregon will also be unveiling new Nike uniforms and a “liquid metal” helmet.
Oregon will also be trying to avenge losses in BCS bowl games as they have dropped their last 2- Last year in the NC game against Auburn and 2 years ago to our own Buckeyes in the Rose Bowl game. Look for Oregon to really try and go up tempo and put a ton of points on the board; which, to be honest, they should be able to do against a so-so Wisconsin D.
Fun Fact: This game will have 2 of the top 10 Heisman finalists in Ball (4th) and James (10th). The fun fact is Ball was a 3 star #47 RB in the 2009 class and James was a 3 star #40 RB in the country in the 2007 class. Both were very underrated to say the least, and it’s a great reminder about scouting services.
Who we got?
None of us have faith in our B1G representative… or maybe we just hate Bielema.
There are winning games ugly, and then there is what Ohio State’s victory over Illinois was. Four total pass attempts, one completed pass, and plenty of runs made the Buckeyes’ win in Champaign about as unattractive as a win can get.
The bye week provided plenty of retrospect for the team, the fans, and pundits alike. There is plenty to ponder as we barrel towards the end of the regular season. As unlikely as it might seem, Ohio State still has an opportunity to win the Leaders Division if they were to win all of their remaining games.
That task is not without its pitfalls especially starting this week against the Wisconsin Badgers, who are coming off a 37-31 loss at the hands of Michigan State. If there was an opportunity to knock the boys from Madison off, I thought the best case scenario would be off of a tough loss to Sparty. Since this writer turned out to be Nostradamus on the first part, let’s just see if step number two will come to fruition this Saturday. With that, let’s dive into a little Scarlet and Gray Q&A.
What kind of positive momentum does the win at Illinois provide?
In short, it provides a lot. This might seem like a no brainer but there seemed to be plenty of positive ways to look at the game. Rewind to two Saturdays ago, and you might recall the high winds that wreaked havoc on offensive game plans that day. While there is some room to debate how much the elements affected the Buckeyes offensive game plan, it had to have some effect on how few passing plays were called. Read More
For once, SBP could serve as a public service announcement, particularly for the folks in the Zanesville area.
No afternoon presser today, so here’s all the non-exotic animal related news… unless you count John Simon as his own overly evolved species of critter.
As we get ready for conference play, we wanted to do something “special” for our weekly chat with an “enemy” blogger. Given that we were playing co-champion Michigan State, and given the multiple connections that Spartan and Buckeye football have (coaches, players from the same high schools, hatred for all things scUM), it was even more imperative that we brought someone in that represented the Green and White with excellence. And, if they continued to refer to themselves in third person, all the better. So, we’re grateful to have The Enlightened Spartan swing by for nachos and chit-chat this week… be sure to check out Eric’s response to his inquisition, in the first (and most likely last) MSU PhD B1G Blog-off.
Kirk Cousins has obviously been a bright star for the team, and represented MSU particularly well at the B1G media days. Do you feel he’s reached the top of his game, or are there areas that he is still developing in?
Cousins has not reached the top of his game… but can he? Yes, it is possible, he could be the best QB in the B1G, if not the country. He has the talent, smarts, and confidence to be a la Tom Brady. But, he seems to have difficulty consistently responding to difficult challenges. He is showing how he can let the buzz get to his head. While Cousins may have come from nowhere to be the Spartan starter, but he seems to be OVERconfident – Cousins throws off his back foot far too often, he still does, and he knows better. With OSU pressure in his face, Cousins may likely give up an INT or two as much as he hits a streaking Cunningham or Nichol. It’s a crap shoot with Cousins, but it shouldn’t be in senior year five. Frustratingly fantastically just-short-of-championship potential – kind of like David Bowie or George Lopez. Read More
Your weekly update from the Ohio State press conference as well as notes from around the world of college sports- this week, we take a pointed look at the NCAA after the jump.
Today, Nike released photos of the uniforms the Ohio State football team will be wearing against Wisconsin on their Facebook page.
This will be the third year of the “special” uniform promotion; the previous two honored past Ohio State teams, and this one seeks to honor the 1961 National Champions.
Unfortunately, the concerns of this writer were fulfilled, as the helmet has the distinctive wide stripe that we saw Georgia wear earlier this season. In addition, the base layer and gloves emulate the bark on the buckeye trees that are planted on campus to honor All Americans. However, rumors of an all-black or dark gray uniform were unfounded- the design stays within the University’s color scheme.