So here’s the thing.
The story of the day yesterday was the first episode of All Access, a behind the scenes look at the Buckeye program under the new regime.
But… in a moment of weakness, I DVR’d it And watched it.
And loved ever second.
How can you hate quotes like “Abso-smurfly”, “Bozo the freakin’ clown”, “I’m glad you’re a Buckeye, bro…”, “I like coaching you…” and other admonitions to play “hungry” and “angry”.
And the precision of the offensive staff’s work, the pride that Coach Mariotti puts into his time with the team, and the focus and plan that Coach Meyer is instilling into the team… it’s a really good piece. If you missed it and don’t mind the spoilers, the gang at LGHL have a really good review with picture pages and everything.
I’d be really excited about this, to be honest, if all things were equal. Given the bad PR that my favorite program received over the past few years for numerous self inflicted wounds, it’s great to get excited about OSU football again- and to see a national response (including Southern Cal and Clemson recruits commenting on it) that was pretty positive.
But, I’ll be honest- It’s still hard for me to not be wary about this series. You kick a dog and reach to pet him, he’ll wince and cower even if he lets you stroke his head again. Given what we know about ESPN’s agenda (Entertainment Sports Programming Network), it safe to see that they are interested in a narrative of redemption up until the point that they bang the drums marking a fall from grace.
Just watch the history- 2002 upset their narrative, and then the 2003 Clarett story was a bottom. The 2006 season’s coverage was the apex of good vibes, and then this past year seems to be yet another trough in their coverage- again, a story that Ohio State wrote for itself, but one that got presented over and over and over again on the largest stage while others were way way off Broadway in Coral Gables and Columbia and Chapel Hill.
So- we’ll watch (yup) and see. And, if nothing else, this will give us the chance to celebrate the splendor and power of an Ohio State team on a very particular mission.
Buckle Buckeye up.
It’s your regularly scheduled look around the world of college sports- a bit more in depth than the tidbits we’ve got after practice. Following Tuesday’s notes, be sure to check the latest on “reform” from the NCAA and thoughts on Penn State’s constant appeals processes.
Not So Fast… Any speculation about Roby playing offense and defense was shut down by the coaches today. He made a spectacular play on an overthrow today, though- he’s going to be special. However, Corey Brown said that Roby wasn’t the fastest guy on the team, and called him out saying that he (Corey) wasn’t able to run during testing but that he could beat Roby in a race.
To get Buckeye Nation ready for the first Spring Game in Urban Meyer’s tenure at Ohio State, the Buckeye Bloggers Network wanted to take an in-depth look at each position following spring practice. Be sure to check out all of the coverage!
The easy comment on the offensive line, be it at Ohio State or nationwide, is that the season will hinge on their performance.
Again, that’s the standard answer, but I have to believe that this year it bodes more true than ever in Columbus. There are playmakers elsewhere on Offense, and the Defense (while thin in places) has the potential to be terrifying for opposing offensive coordinators.
But the Buckeye Offensive Line is a mystery at this point; which was evidenced merely looking at Coach Meyer’s emphases on the recruiting trail beginning last season. It’s not enough that they are replacing both tackles and their four year starter at center. It’s not enough that they are now “loaded” with talent amassed by James “Meh, one guard a year is all we need” Bollman, who annually defined the word “reach” with the recruiting offers he seemed to facilitate.
Nope, in addition to those obvious concerns comes this- the team’s offensive identity is taking a major shift. Gone are the days of “Dave, Dave, Draw, Punt”; we now have an offensive scheme that requires linemen to a) be in top cardiovascular shape and b) pass block as effectively as run block. In other words, there’s some coachin’ to do.
So, if you’re like me (my condolences), you’re incredibly interested in seeing how the anchor of the team’s successes will look on Saturday. Will Braxton’s runs in the fall be designed or out of necessity? Will long runs be due to Jordan and Carlos and Rod and Brionte’s talent, or due to the gaping holes that are waiting for them? Will my summer be spent in quiet confidence or wondering instead how what the record for most “three and outs” by a Buckeye team might be?
Saturday gives us our first clue. Onward.
What will be most different this year than last?
We’ve talked about the tempo and scheme being gently called “the polar opposite of Tresselball”, let’s take a look at the new faces in the new places. First, the team lineups: Read More
Before Buckeye Nation turned it’s eyes to shootyhoops on Saturday, the 2012 football team took to the field for it’s first full-pad practice of the spring. Here’s some of the things we’ve learned after three days under Coach Meyer:
Ohio offensive tackle Taylor Decker has decided to become the 20th member of Ohio State’s 2012 recruiting class, filling a major position of need on the team in the coming years.
Decker had been committed to Notre Dame since March of ’11, making this somewhat of a surprise.
However, Decker’s decision to officially visit Columbus came shortly after his position coach (Ed Warinner) and primary recruiter (Tim Hinton) at Notre Dame were announced as the final members of Urban Meyer’s offensive coaching staff. The relationship he established with his coaches was clearly important and the driving factor in his decision to be a Buckeye.
At 6’8″ and 300 lbs. (give or take) Decker has prototypical size for a tackle. His athleticism on the basketball court (where he also excels) is an indication that he has the footwork necessary to pass block on the edge. All of these things mean that he likely projects at LT- and that is a very, very good thing for the Buckeyes.
Highlights after the jump.
Big news on the recruiting front.
Ohio offensive tackle and current Notre Dame verbal commit Taylor Decker will be visiting Ohio State this weekend.
Considering that his position coach and primary recruiter at Notre Dame were just officially announced and introduced as a part of Ohio State’s coaching staff, the writing seems to be on the wall for this one.
Given the need at tackle, Decker switching his commitment to the Buckeyes would obviously be a huge development for the 2012 class and for the team moving forward.
With the uncertainty surrounding Jordan Diamond (both in terms of where he will sign and if he projects at LT) and the recent news that Joey O’Conner is being recruited as an interior linemen, it can’t be overstated what big news this is and the impact it could have on the 2012 class.
A duo of Decker and Dodson at tackle would be an amazing finish, particularly when you consider how bleak things have looked at the position throughout this recruiting cycle.
Joe also contributed to this post.
With the excitement of fall camp and the start of the season, recruiting has been on the back burner for weeks.
With those two commitments and the recent addition of several new in-state offers (one of which was Kalis), the 2012 class is starting to gain some momentum.
As far as the 2011 class is concerned, outside of Doran Grant, Aundrey Walker, and Shane Wynn eventually becoming Buckeyes, everything else is up in the air.
The area of most confusion in 2011 is at linebacker. Ohio State clearly would like to take at least one linebacker in the class… the problem is figuring out who that will be.
Join me after the jump for a look at how the 2011 class might wind down and an early look at the extremely talented 2012 class. Read More
I already took a brief look at the ’12 class at the end of June. Since then, Ohio State landed ’12 LB/TE/DE/whatever prospect Josh Perry, officially making it not too early to start talking about the rest of the class.
Another factor that makes it worth looking ahead is that the ’11 class is all but finished.
Even though official written offers aren’t allowed to be sent out until September 1st, Ohio State’s staff has identified quite a few ’12 players at camp this summer to extend verbal offers to.
Extremely early/rough estimates for the ’12 class indicate that it will be very small, possibly less than 15 spots small, pending transfers, people coming back (Duron Carter) and early departures to the NFL.
The limited scholarships plus the early verbal offers mean that the class could (and most likely will) fill up quickly.
When everything is said and done, the 2011 and 2012 recruiting classes will be extremely talented and building blocks for the future, similar to what the 2008 and 2009 classes are on the team right now. Read More