The Leaders and the Legends will sing their swan song in 2013. The NFL draft has come and gone: Where did the Buckeyes end up? How stupid or smart were the Cleveland Browns? It’s Wednesday, let’s rumble!
Don’t go away mad, just go away…
“It’s good for the fans, it’s good for the players. It strengthens our schedule from the perspective of the postseason and binds the conference together in a powerful way.”
And with those Jim Delaney comments, the Big Ten has realigned for the 2014 season. The first year to include Maryland and Rutgers will also include the newly realigned Big Ten East and Big Ten West.
Let me say it, Hallelujah!
Last week I mentioned in Quick Hitters that the BCS had tapped the strongest of their think tanks to come up with the name of the college football playoff and appropriately named it The College Football Playoff. Kudos to Delaney, Gene Smith and the guy who ruined Domino’s Pizza (can you really ruin something already terrible?) and is now AD at TTUN for bringing in some world class nerds to do major research and realize that the fans of the Big Ten were almost unanimously in favor of one thing: Michigan sucks. What I meant to say is they were in favor of the divisions being called anything other than Leader and Legends and preferred a more simple approach like North/South or East/West. Thanks to Jim Delaney and those crazy eyebrows for finally giving the people what they want.
Side note: I remember being in favor of Lakes and Plains over what they chose.
The Buckeyes are in the East division with Penn State, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan State, Rutgers and TTUN.
Meanwhile the West will be home to Wisconsin, Nebraska, Illinois, Purdue, Northwestern, Iowa and Minnesota. Read More
I hope everyone had a great Christmas and survived it safely! Did you get what you wanted? I decided since this is the last week of 2012, why not do a “best of and worst of” to recap all the things that caught our eye or made us angry this past year. Let’s rumble!
The Gator Bowl- The year started out with the Buckeyes in the Gator Bowl taking on the Florida Gators. The outcome and subsequent bowl ban clearly make this one of our “worst of” for the year. The catch to it that makes me crazy is listening to everyone now talk about it like they knew that the bowl ban was coming. From Gordon Gee to Gene Smith and down the line to all of us, everyone thought they would be getting probation and reduced scholarships for “Tattoo-gate”. The revisionists out there like to destroy Smith for not taking a self-imposed one year ban. There are plenty of reasons to not like Gene Smith, the bowl ban isn’t one of them.
Beating Syracuse- Everyone knows Jim Boeheim is a cranky old fart. One of the “best of” moments of 2012 was watching the Buckeyes take apart his Syracuse Orangemen to earn a berth in the Final Four. Watching him grimace and complain, knowing he was outmatched and on his way out of the tournament was a beautiful sight!
Circle Drill- Read More
Vince Lombardi used to tell his teams that they would strive for perfection while knowing full well they’d never reach it. However, he knew that somewhere along the way in the pursuit of perfection they would end up being pretty good. By defeating (we can say the M word again) Michigan on Saturday, the Buckeyes achieved perfection. Along the way they faced adversity and doubters but still wound up being pretty good!
The Reckoning: Mission Accomplished
The 109th rendition of The Game was more than an opportunity to finish a season unbeaten (only the 6th in school history) it was a chance to right a wrong. Heading into Saturday, the sting from last years game in Ann Arbor was still there. When Denard Robinson broke tackles for a 67 yard touchdown run in the second quarter all the emotions from 2011 came roaring back. It all finally subsided after seeing Carlos Hyde look to the Ohio State sideline and give Urban Meyer and his staff the “feed me” hand motion of spooning food into his mouth with around three minutes to play indicating he was more than prepared to finish off the game and that there wasn’t a thing the Wolverine defense could do to stop him.
Last week I introduced the idea of The Reckoning and wanting payback for the showboat antics, not to mention the loss in general, of the Wolverines in 2011. When Hyde motioned to Meyer and the Blue’s spirit and will had been broken, that indication and only then finally had The Reckoning been achieved. I didn’t want to see the Buckeyes win; I wanted to see Michigan broken and demoralized. It wasn’t until I read the stat sheet that I realized just how broken and demoralized Michigan actually was.
Silver Bullets to the rescue
Much maligned throughout the season, and rightfully so, the Buckeye defense stepped up huge and shut down the Wolverine offense almost completely in the second half. Luke Fickell and Everett Withers made adjustments at halftime that anticipated every move Michigan would make in the second half. They set up the Silver Bullet’s in a position to pin their ears back and fly around. The results were several big plays including sacks, fumbles and the eventual game clinching interception by CJ Barnett.
Early on in the game it’s easy to assume Fickell wasn’t sure exactly the extent of Robinson’s injury. Were they using him exclusively to run or did he have the treat to pass despite the injury to his right hand/wrist? Around the middle of the second quarter the discussions regarding Robinson abilities on this particular afternoon had to be compelling to listen in on. Ultimately the decision was made that in their opinions he wasn’t going to throw it and that they’d live with the consequences if he did. The gamble paid off, they were right, Robinson made zero passing attempts and his runs were completely shut down.
If you asked me before the game, I’d have almost guaranteed you that my vision of The Reckoning would have been realized by the Buckeye offense with an absolute onslaught of points and Braxton Miller dancing all over the Blue defense. I’m glad I would have been wrong as seeing the Silver Bullets intimidate and overpower the Wolverine offense was special and, in a way, much more satisfying. Read More
What a long and full day of excitement. Nothing will ever replace or beat my experiences in 2002(I don’t think), but this came very close to being as enjoyble.
There was so much happening after THE Game in 2002 that really the best part that I remember is being on the field with 100,000 screaming fans. I still look at the picture from time to time to play Where’s Waldo and find me. Yesterday will go down as the best day for THE Game because I got to spend it with some good friends and some awesome fans in my section.
Being two hours away and knowing the traffic would be ridiculous, I had to get up at 4:45 to head to meet Gary, Robby and Jerry in Zanesville. We got to our usual lot without any fanfare but we just missed the mayhem. We walked over to Lane Avenue as we usually do to pick up some drinks and a snack or two and saw this ugly thing on the way.
I gave our fearless leader (Mali) a call to see where he was and as fate would have it, he was only about a block away so we met up with him for a few minutes. After seeing him for the first time ever, we went into the 7/11 and got drinks for the brunch that we have with other ushers on D-Deck before the last game of the season. It’s always good food and fun. We headed up the avenue to see Roy and Maurice and check out the DRIVEN tent and see how things were going. Ran into Mali again with his wife, brother Scott, and a friend.
Heading back to the stadium for the brunch and to man our posts, I must say I was not surprised with the traffic but was surprised the area between St. Johns and the Shoe was like a ghost town. Very few booths set up and not at all very many people. The line had started for the Skull session but that was the extent of the crowd around 9am. Read More
In the 109th edition of The Game, the Ohio State Buckeyes completed a perfect season with a home win over the Michigan Wolverines.
We’ll be back with much more coverage later today and tomorrow, but for now, we’re celebrating with the rest of Buckeye Nation.
In the meantime, enjoy!!!
Staying undefeated in November is a tough task. Just ask the Ohio State Buckeyes, who needed overtime to take care of business in Madison, Wisconsin against the Badgers on Saturday. Credit the Badgers for fighting to the end. Credit the Buckeyes for overcoming adversity and making plays to keep the dream alive.
Bert and the boys
It really seemed early on that the Buckeyes were going to run away with the game against Bert Bielema and his Wisconsin Badger boys. When Cory Brown’s punt return for a touchdown put the Buckeyes up 7 followed by a machine-like high tempo drive early in the second quarter that resulted in a Carlos Hyde touchdown giving the Bucks a 14 point lead, the Camp Randall crowd seemed uninterested and it looked like the good guys were going to have their way. We certainly didn’t see the dramatic ending that put this game in line with the recent history of classic endings in Wisconsin-Ohio State games on the horizon.
Both teams showed great perseverance and battled through the highs and lows of the game. For the Badgers it was facing a 14 point hole. For the Buckeyes, it was a stalling second half offense that couldn’t get things going. For the first time this season, Braxton Miller was contained.
Bielema and his staff devised a great scheme that slowed up Miller: Set the edge and force him to show his hand early on as to where he was going along with spying him with a corner and a safety. It is similar to what we saw Stanford due to Oregon later that night. They are daring the quarterback to stay in the pocket and beat them with his arm. They are also running the risk their spy’s can make a tackle one-on-one with one of the most elusive players in college football. The Badgers I’m sure are aware he hasn’t earned the name “XBrax360” because he lacks shake and spin. Bert’s gamble paid off and Wisconsin held Miller to his lowest yardage totals of the season and kept the Buckeye offense stammering to the end result of (even with overtime) a mere 21 points.
Fortunately in the overtime he offense got on track. Better late than never, I guess. Carlos Hyde’s seemingly easy touchdown gave the Buckeyes the coveted overtime edge of 7 points and put it on the shoulders of their defense. Four plays later, the Buckeyes were 11-0.
Last week we spotlighted the Wisconsin-Ohio State rivalry and how it was blossoming into a true “second tier” rivalry for the Buckeyes. Saturday’s game added to the burgeoning legacy. It was definitely one for the ages. Read More
This week, there’s only one song that will suffice for Buckeye Nation. Enjoy!
The “reveal” was a part of the Beat Blue rally in the Student Union on Monday night, and saw former Ohio State running back Raymont Harris taking the catwalk at the party. The biggest question is about the Buckeye leafs awards on the helmet- the jersey will have seven of them to commemorate the seven national titles, but it’s unlikely that the awards the players have won this season will make the helmet. That being said, the official Nike blog has a Buckeye sticker on the helmet, so there may be something in the works.
My take: I like these the most of the ones we’ve seen, although I wish they’d stop screwing around with the gear for Mich1gAAn week. But, the students like them, as do all of the recruits who will be in attendance... and that’s the target demographic.
“You’re taught at a very young age who the enemy is, but you have a lot respect for the enemy.”
He spoke fondly about this year’s senior class, and how he’s been impressed that they stuck around once the bowl ban was announced. He talked about the need to be ready for both Denard and Devin at quarterback on Saturday, and that there was more than likely a chance for something “interesting” to happen. On his own quarterback, Coach Meyer talks to him daily and reminds him that the goal is to be a QB that can run rather than a running back who throws the ball. “It’s a big week in Columbus Ohio”
Over the past two Thursdays, we’ve taken a short glance at Ohio State’s nonconference schedule and the first half of the Big Ten games.
While back to back matchups against Michigan State and Nebraska in weeks five and six will be tough tests for the Buckeyes, the final four games are the ones Buckeye fans are waiting for.
This is particularly true for the last two; given the lack of a post-season this year, both matchups will be the culmination of the season for the seniors and a hungry team looking to finish on an up note. While the rest of the country is preparing for their bowl games, Buckeye coaches will be on the recruiting trail- a strong finish will certainly go a long way to solidifying yet another stellar class.
Oh, and there’s not exactly “friendly feelings” with those two programs anyway.
Week 9, Oct. 27: Ohio State at Penn State
(Beaver Stadium—State College, Pennsylvania)
2011 record: 9-4
Returning starters: 9 (4 offense, 5 defense)
It has been dubbed “The Battle of the Banneds.” Both Penn State and Ohio State will not be playing in bowl games in 2012, but they will square off Oct. 27 in Happy Valley. Ohio State has had recent success in games at Beaver Stadium, winning its last meeting there with the Nittany Lions, 24-7, in 2009.
Thanks to its recent sanctions, Penn State has lost several players to transfers. It leaves the Nittany Lions in a tough situation for 2012 and beyond. There will be a lot of hype surrounding this game, though, because both teams are ineligible for postseason play and will want to prove something to the rest of the nation.
Week 10, Nov. 3: Illinois at Ohio State
(Ohio Stadium—Columbus, Ohio)
2011 record: 7-6
Returning starters: 15 (8 offense, 7 defense)
The only way Ohio State could lose this game is by looking ahead to its contest next week against Wisconsin. But, that’s why they play the game.
Illinois quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase is a dynamic athlete that has the ability to create problems for defenses. But, the Buckeyes should be disciplined enough to contain Scheelhaase. And, with superstar wide receiver A.J. Jenkins no longer in the mix, it should make for an easy Ohio State victory. Read More