Are You Not Entertained? UAB

Written September 25th, 2012 by Eric


Hall is the first running back to hit the century mark for the Bucks this season.

Offensive Consistency. At times, this offense seemed unstoppable. Other times, they seem miserably poor. Does “Consistent Inconsistency” count?

Receivers that can catch. Not for the most part, no. Plenty of drives were killed by dropped passes. While they hauled in 60% of Miller’s passes, it still took them the better part of a half to focus on the game.

More ground production from halfbacks. Hall picked up the first 100 yard game for the running backs this season, and Rod Smith picked up a healthy 24 yards on 6 carries.

A Defense that tackles. It was an improvement, surprisingly. But, it is still not where it should be.

Linebackers that live up to their legacy. Someday perhaps. Saturday was a tad early to ask for it.


Consistency. Consistently Inconsistent – tattoo it on this team’s forehead, because it is the perfect descriptor for them.

Less Wounded Ducks. Didn’t see too many, but did see a few poor throws still. The footwork is not quite where it should be – particularly when he gets excited.

Secondary Still. It was an improvement in terms of long plays, but the coverage is not where it should be. 10 yards off the receiver is pathetic pass coverage.

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Shots from the Shoe – UAB

Written September 23rd, 2012 by WVaBuckeye

The day started off great getting an opportunity to meet up with Roy Hall again and bringing Gary Russell with me. This time I made sure that we got a picture worth displaying as my Twitter AVI. Big thank you to Roy for humoring us and taking part in O-H-I-O. Gary, Rob, and I have taken opps to get some neat ones and this might be our favorite.

Robby - Roy Hall - myself and Gary Russell

Spent the bigger part of the morning watching videos and talking with some fans and ultimately getting chastised by tBBC’s own Eric for saying the videos were the best part of pregame. He said it was a fail because everyone knows that TBDBITL is the best part of pregame and I recovered nicely by pointing out the videos were the best part before the Alumni version of TBDBITL hit the field. I jokingly said 1,000 strong and it appeared I wasn’t far off.

500 plus of TBDBITL and Alumni

There isn’t a whole lot more that I can say about the days events that hasn’t been said by the experts” but here I go. Each of the first four teams that we have played spent an obvious large amount of time preparing for the Buckeyes. At one point and time I tweeted a pic of the strange defense the Blazers were running.

It appears they were running a wide spread three man front and at times the ends were standing up . They pretty much brought the house each time to try and get the Buckeyes into throwing the ball more. As fate would have it the Buckeyes needed a great drive to go up by two scores and win the game.

Funky three man front D by the Blazers

Not that my opinion is of any great value, but it appears to me that Coach Meyer has kept his offense and defense very vanilla in an attempt to challenge his team even more before the B1G starts. In three straight games now we have seen the team just flip a switch (Braxton) and move right down the field and score. Today they made the one series look very effortless and undefendable.

I for one and pleased with the results thus far and am excited for the start of the conference slate. For a couple weeks I don’t have to worry about getting to bed late from officiating on Friday and getting up at 5 a.m. to get to Columbus. The Buckeyes are on the road against Sparty next week in a 3:30 affair and the following week the Cornhuskers come to town in a nighttime match-up.

Have a great week! Go Bucks!

Buckeyes Less Than Impressive in 29-15 Win Against UAB

Written September 22nd, 2012 by Tim Shoemaker

Ohio State’s defense has serious problems.

The Buckeyes got off to another slow start against an inferior opponent, but Buckeyes’ quarterback Braxton Miller ignited the offense in the second quarter as OSU narrowly defeated UAB 29-15.

Despite falling behind 9-0 in the first quarter, Miller rallied the Buckeyes’ offense with a couple of electric runs, leading to three Buckeye touchdowns scored in a 5:29 span in the second quarter. Ohio State led 21-12 at halftime.

Like the game against Miami, the first quarter was ugly for the Buckeyes. Ben Buchanan’s punt was blocked by about seven UAB defenders and was picked up by Nick Adams for a touchdown to give the Blazers an early 6-0 lead.

Then, trailing 9-0, Miller led the Buckeyes on a 10 play drive in 4:23 which saw Rod Smith find the end zone. It was good to see Smith get a touchdown. He’s a running back that has a lot of talent, but has had problems in his career with ball security.

Miller was the leader on offense for the Buckeyes. He completed 12 of his 20 pass attempts for 123 yards. Miller also carried the ball 11 times for 64 yards and two touchdowns. Jordan Hall chipped in 105 yards rushing on 17 carries.

Despite the win, the story of the game was the inability of the OSU defense to make any sort of plays against a bad UAB team. According to head coach Urban Meyer, missed tackles were a point of emphasis in practice this week, but I honestly couldn’t tell from watching the game. It seemed like UAB players were breaking tackles left and right. Next week against Michigan State, this needs to be cleaned up or OSU is in trouble.

Four players really stood out to me on defense–three of which play of the defensive line. Jonathan Hankins is my defensive player of the game as he recorded nine tackles and blew a bunch of plays up in the backfield. Nathan Williams finally got to start a football game and he was flying all over the field. He had a few missed tackles (but who didn’t), but overall I felt he played a very solid game for the Buckeyes. And John Simon didn’t have a huge statistical impact on the game, but his constant pressure on UAB quarterbacks Austin Brown and Jonathan Perry was felt.

Doran Grant also earned the start at corner for the injured Bradley Roby. His stat line: 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovery, 1 interception and 1 sack. Not too bad for the first start of his career.

The Buckeyes still have a lot of work to do. The defense needs serious work and the offense needs to become much more consistent.

But, at the end of the day, the Buckeyes improved to 4-0 and will travel to East Lansing next week for a date with Michigan State.

If the Buckeyes don’t improve in practice this week, though, they could be in for a long afternoon.


BBN LiveBlog: UAB

Written September 22nd, 2012 by Eric

Welcome to another glorious Saturday! The Buckeyes are set to take on the Alabama-Birmingham Blazers at Noon EST on the BTN. The Liveblog will kick off 30 minutes before gametime.

While you wait, check out the great members of the BBN: Our Honor Defend, Men of the Scarlet and Gray, Buckeye Empire, Silver Bullet, The Buckeye Blog, Unscripted Ohio, and Fox Sports Ohio.

Looking forward to seeing you there! Go Bucks!

Across the Web: UAB

Written September 21st, 2012 by Gary Russell II

This week for our Across the Web segment we travel down South to Birmingham, Alabama. Steve Irvine from The Birmingham News was gracious enough to take time out of busy schedule to answer a few questions for us. Check out Steve’s answers to our burning questions below:

The Man In The Middle

1. Who are three Blazers that we should be aware of? Linebacker Marvin Burdette is the team’s leading tackler and has a shot at setting school career mark in tackles. Wide receiver Jackie Williams, who is tied for the team lead with 11 catches in two games, comes up with clutch catches. Offensive tackle Chris Hubbard is the lone returning starter up front and a All-C-USA player.

2. How do you see Coach McGee’s offense at UAB being different than his time at Arkansas and Northwestern? I think he wants to do the same thing they did at those places. I’m not sure he has the players in place to do that just yet. He runs a pro-style set that combines the running and passing game when things are going well.

3. With Coach McGee, Coach Brohm, and Coach Peterson all having connections to Ohio State and the B1G, how do you see this helping the Blazers prepare for Saturday’s contest? It certainly helps when it comes to knowing the surroundings. Once the game starts, though, it’s about the players.

4. The Buckeyes have struggled all season defending the deep pass. How do you expect the Blazers to take advantage of that, and how successful might they be?  UAB likes to throw the deep ball but hasn’t had success doing that thus far. They have the pieces to have an effective deep passing attack but haven’t executed that aspect of the offense yet.

'Supposed to be SEC

5. Who will the Blazers look to in order to stop the OSU offense and Braxton Miller? It’s going to take all 11 defenders to slow Miller down. UAB won’t stop him but the Blazers hope to minimize the damage.

6. The Blazers are facing their second straight ranked opponent. Do you think that facing South Carolina last week helped the Blazers prepare for this week’s matchup with Ohio State? If so, how? It definitely helps getting adjusted to the surroundings and possibly weathering some tough times on the field. Will that be enough for UAB to hang in there? Perhaps, but my guess is UAB will get worn down in the second half, just as it did at South Carolina.

Thanks again to Steve Irvine from The Birmingham News for meeting with us. Be sure to check out his work at The Birmingham News and his blog “Off the Vine“.

What Do You Want To See On Saturday? UAB Edition

Written September 21st, 2012 by Eric


Devin Smith asks you to kindly pay attention to his catching this time.

Offensive Consistency.At times this season, and especially last Saturday against Cal, our offense has looked spectacular and unstoppable. At other times it looks as though they’re impersonating themselves from last year. I want to see the offense have more consistency in their production, few or no three and outs.

Receivers that can catch. This goes along with the offensive consistency. The Receivers need to make catches. Sometimes Miller throws the ball too fast or more rarely just in an awful spot… but too many times a good throw has been ruined by the receiver dropping it.

More ground production from halfbacks. Hall had a solid return with 80 or so yards, but never looked particularly flashy. Hardly anyone else even touched the ball. It was nice to see Miller cut back on his carries and give us hope he won’t be injured from pushing himself on the ground, but someone needs to fill those yards he leaves.

A Defense that tackles. I think I’m going to call the defensive seniors from my undefeated-playoff bound home school Northwood Rangers to see if they can teach our defense how to tackle. It’s the most basic of basic fundamental skills, and we seem to have totally forgotten how to do it. Ryan Shazier is the poster boy for it. He seems more keen on going for the highlight reel smashing hit, than just wrapping up and making sure the guy is down.

Linebackers that live up to their legacy. Boy what I would give to have the likes of AJ Hawk, Bobby Carpenter, Andy Katzenmoyer, or James Laurinaitis back for a few games. These line backers have so much talent and so much potential, but just have no lived up to it thus far. The aforementioned Shazier shows tons of promise, but just needs to tackle!!!!


Consistency. I have yet to see any consistency with this team. They do pull together to get the W but I would love 4 consistent quarters.

Less Wounded Ducks. Braxton has wowed us with his legs. He has hit some timely passes but he needs to cut down on the missed passes and hit the open receivers in stride.

Secondary Still. I’m not giving up on this. There is talent with those D-Backs, now just to show up on game day.
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Will Ohio State Overlook Alabama Birmingham?

Written September 20th, 2012 by Tim Shoemaker

Trust Ackbar

In a week like this, I would usually write something like, “beware of the trap game.”

With a date with Michigan State in East Lansing looming next week, it would be easy to declare Ohio State’s game this weekend against UAB a trap game. The Spartans are a superior team and it will be the first Big Ten game under head coach Urban Meyer.

UAB is not a trap game, though. Breathe easy, Buckeye fans.

The Blazers will come into Ohio Stadium on Saturday and bring a 0-2 record with them, including a 49-6 loss last week to South Carolina. UAB also lost its opening game to Troy, 39-29 at home.

Maybe an opponent like UAB is exactly what the Buckeyes (3-0) need right now.

After blowing out Miami in its opener, Ohio State has struggled a bit in its last two games. The Buckeyes looked less than impressive in their 31-16 win against UCF and were on the ropes late last week against Cal. Braxton Miller found Devin Smith for a 72-yard touchdown to save the day for Ohio State, though, helping the Buckeyes to a 35-28 victory.

This is the type of game that Ohio State needs to work on improving. Last week, the defense did not look like we hoped it would. There were missed tackles all over the field that led to several big plays for the California offense.

Meyer is not satisfied with his team either. He knows exactly how big next week’s game is against the Spartans and he is going to want to issue a statement with the game against UAB.

Michigan State will be trying to make a statement too. The Spartans suffered a loss last week at the hands of Notre Dame and will be taking out all of that frustration on poor Eastern Michigan.

I’m usually cautious around games like the one Ohio State has with UAB. But, UAB isn’t exactly a threatening team. But more importantly, Urban Meyer is the head coach of the Buckeyes and he won’t let his team look ahead to Michigan State.

I am a strong believer in those so-called trap games. But this, my friends, is not one of them. Buckeyes roll.

Previewing the Ohio State Football Schedule—Part I

Written August 2nd, 2012 by Tim Shoemaker

Fast approaching.

Yesterday was the official one month mark until the start of college football.

Ohio State may not be eligible for postseason play in 2012, but that has no impact on the anticipation for Buckeye fans.

Urban Meyer is one month away from his debut as Ohio State’s head coach, and that is the main reason OSU fans are excited.

The Buckeyes begin the 2012 season with four non-conference home games—only one of which is against a team from a BCS conference.

While OSU may not have a big-name program on its non-conference schedule like years past, playing four games under coach Meyer before the Big Ten schedule will be extremely important for the team to get comfortable in a new system under a new coaching staff.

Here at The Buckeye Battlecry, we will have in-depth previews of each OSU opponent during the week of the game. This, however, is the first in a three-part series briefly looking at the 2012 season a month out. Read More

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