Silver Bullet Defense!

Silver Bullets Again?

I wanted to talk about some of the talent we have on defense and how the Buckeyes’ new defensive staff will bring the most out of this talented young roster. This will be a two part article as I look at the linebackers and defensive backs.

Before I get into the staff’s new package and way of thinking defensively, I want to say something about our old “bend but don’t break” defensive package. While it was effective for many years, I think it’s just a little too passive with the development of College Football and all the spread offenses the past 5-10 years. With that being said, there is still a place for it, but that would be more for situational uses.

The one issue the Buckeyes could run into is not ensuring the defense has a true understanding of the scheme while keeping it as fresh in their minds as possible, which could turn into a nightmare. This is a good defense to play when the Buckeyes have a sizable lead that does not warrant the old “Pre-Vent defense” (which I absolutely loath).

Ohio State 4-3 Tight

Under the former defensive staff, our defense (attempted) to limit offenses with gadget plays or a breakdown in the scheme as their only options to move the ball. It was also easy to man up on receivers when you were giving such a cushion to the WR’s. The Buckeyes would just seek a big safety to play as the fifth defensive back, while removing a LB from the field.

That brings me to Coach Ash and his “Walkout Linebacker” role, which will be asked to do an awful lot. Finding this type of player to successfully play this position is going to take some serious evaluating and recruiting. This player must be linebacker sized and will be expected to step out and cover the slot receiver at times.

Needless to say, most linebackers do not excel in coverage, so again this will need to be a special player with speed. I mean if linebackers were that good in coverage, you would see the death of the nickel and dime packages as teams would never get out of their base defense. This position needs a new, much more “Badass” name….I think that would work right there as they will need to be one to be successful.

This could turn into a very big positive for the Buckeyes on the recruiting trail as well. How great of a selling point: if you become a Buckeye, you will be able to compete for the “Badass” position and stay on the field all three downs. If you think about NFL teams and what they are looking for, a “three-down linebacker” is one (see Seattle Seahawks).  That is really what it will take to be a high first round draft pick as a linebacker going forward; He must be able to cover as he will be expected to stay on the field for all three downs. Read More

One Fan’s Opinion: Defensive Dreams

Written April 29th, 2014 by MaliBuckeye

Mike checks back in with part two of his post-spring look at the Ohio State football team, getting defensive this time:

When asked to write about the Silver Bullets, I cannot express to you the level of excitement and overall outlook for our beloved Buckeyes that got me pumped for the passing of summer. This will be an improved and potentially dominating defense that will make us proud as fans.

As far as I am concerned it started with the addition of Chris Ash (DC) and Larry Johnson (DL). These coaches are difference makers at practice, game time and recruiting. The impact is already present as witnessed by over 61,000 Buckeye Fans at the Spring Game.

The scheme employed by Ash will be simple, yet aggressive in the back end of the defense. He will allow the players to use their instincts and athletic ability to make plays on a consistent basis. This will mean more press coverage and much less of the “Bend Don’t Break” mentality we have witnessed in the past.

With that being said I would like to highlight a few players that stand out to me in the secondary heading into fall:

  1. Doran Grant gets forgotten about at times with all the talented youth waiting in the wings. We need to remember this is a former 5 star recruit who is suited to be more physical at the line of scrimmage using his hands and size. I really think he has a big year and finally shows he is the player we recruited. He will also be counted on to be more of a leader this year as we have a lot of youth on the depth chart.
  2. Eli Apple/Gareon Conley will both play a lot this year, though it will be a dog fight to see who gets the starting nod if they can beat out (Armani Reeves), which I think happens by mid-season at the latest. Both players are taller cornerbacks (6’1) that are rangy with speed and good hips. One play during the Spring Game I seen Apple “lay the wood” to Corey Smith as he attempted to catch a pass over the middle making me realize what a good hitter he is as well. Conley covered very well and had his hands involved frequently. In a nut shell, if they both stay healthy and out of the dog house, the sky is the limit for both these young men!
  3. Vonn Bell if healthy is penciled in as one starter at Safety. He missed most of the spring with a torn MCL, and it’s being said he “should” be ready for fall camp which we need. He is fast, athletic, a strong tackler but most impressive is his Ball Hawking ability. He will be fun to watch.
  4. Cam Burrows is a 6’0 converted Cornerback that I think will be the other starting safety. He has good coverage skills and will also be able to be an enforcer up in the box when asked. I am really excited about his potential and cannot wait to see him live in action. The only area of concern right now is depth (especially with the Thompson transfer) but once the rest of this recruiting class arrives, we improve right away in that area. Erik Smith is the one kid who I think will be in the 2 deep almost as soon as he walks on campus and contribute!

I am very confident in our young players and Coach Ash’s ability to scheme and motivate. Once healthy, this unit is going to wreak havoc on opposing offenses in the passing game as well as run support. We will be a young secondary from day one but very solid and a group that will improve vastly as the season progresses.

The Linebacker group is the most concerning to me as a whole. Read More

One Fan’s Opinion: Past And Future

Written January 27th, 2014 by MaliBuckeye

Here’s some great perspective from our other Bowl Challenge Winner…. Take it away, Troy!

I would first of all like to thank Mali and the BBC staff for giving me this opportunity to take up 10 minutes of your life and let my Ohio State favoritism corrupt all of you. I still can’t believe that I lost to the 7 year old in the tBBC CFB Bowl Challenge. I give him credit though; it’s definitely not easy. But let’s get into it….

Not The Plan

Due to everybody’s surprise, Ohio State didn’t have the year that we all thought they would have had. Especially with an offense coming in as arguable one of the best in the country from both an O-line and playmaker standpoint. Yeah, the defense had a lot of question marks on it but it was well understood that with Urban Meyer’s track record, the defense was going to become championship caliber soon enough. Meyer never won a championship without his defense/ special teams being one of the best in the country. If you look back to the two national titles, you’ll see some of the best defenses in the country at the time.

But Ohio State’s inability to sure up that secondary issue that lingered all year (It started with Roby playing bad and then Christian Bryant’s season ending injury, along with a couple other injuries/ illnesses that came bowl season) and Tom Herman not feeding Hyde in crunch time were both ultimately the end of Ohio State’s “Chase.” Which I don’t really want to get started on the not feeding Hyde in crunch time part because it still sickens me to this day when I think about it… You are up by 7 early in the 4th Quarter in the B1G Ship and you have a guy who’s average almost 8 yards per carry on the season and you decide to put all of your chips on Braxton’s passing ability against a very good secondary? But as we all know, we can’t dwell on the past and must look forward to 2014, which I might add brings a very good recruiting class (In the Top 5 in every credible recruiting source, notice how ESecPN isn’t in there). But what else is new with UFM at the helm?

So now with both Hyde, one of the best running backs in the country, and that oh so dominating offensive line leaving, us buckeye fans are at a period of questioning in our football team. You along with many outsiders feel that Ohio State won’t have nearly as good of a team as they did last year. And with last year being THE year to win it all if it was going to be any year, right? I mean there’s no possible way that even a young stud like EZE and the rest of the stable will be able to replace Hyde’s play-making ability just like there’s no possible way Ed Warriner will be able to produce an offensive line anywhere close to what Ohio State fielded last year.

Well, I’m here to tell you all that the 2014 Buckeyes will be a better team than what we just saw this past college football season. Read More

What Do You Want To See On Saturday? Northwestern

Written October 4th, 2013 by Gary Russell II

A trip to Evanston to face the Wildcats brings us another night game and brings another week of our experts’ wishes.

By Air?

Joe

  1. Throw the Football - If there is a weakness on this Northwestern team, it’s on the pass defense. The Ohio State offense has to take advantage by chucking the pill and creating big plays in the passing attack
  2. The H-Back - That’s what we are calling it these days right? OC Tom Herman admitted he didn’t get Jordan Hall into last week’s game because he fell back on old play-calling. There’s a need for speed Saturday, I would love to see these guys involved on the edge with Jet sweeps and the liek
  3. A Fast Start - Mali has a point with his desire of a Four Quarters game, but Ohio State also has to do what they do best this season — jump on the back of the opponent early. OSU has outscored opponents 116-21 in the first quarter this season.
  4. Brax Attack - This is the game where Braxton Miller could and should put his name back into the Heisman talks. Last week was a strong showing back. With a solid 4th quarter, I’d love to see #5 propel himself back into the NPOY talks.
  5. Safety Concerns - There is no doubt this team will miss leader and senior Christian Bryant. A true leader in this program. Corey “Pitt” Brown will be called upon to fill his voice at safety. I would love to see Brown fit right in back there and make a great running mate with C.J. Barnett. Tyvus Powell, the nickel corner also could see time at safety. I’m looking for both men to show the fan base what they bring to the table.
  6. Keep The Streak Alive - Winning is the name of the game and two streaks are on the line. Let’s extend the NW winning streak to five straight and 29 of the last 30 and the Overall winning streak to 18!
Scott
  1. Spread ‘em – I wanna see the spread offense really spread. We have all this speed. Lets go wide and turn the corner. 
  2. Kenny G. - Get him in for a few snaps.
  3. Silencer – Take crowd out of game early.
  4. Say What? – Tight end dive pass.

MaliBuckeye

  1. No False Starts - I understand that Wisconsin was simulating the snap with claps and whatnot… control the hostile environment and own the game.
  2. Four Quarters - Ohio State gets off to a fast start… let’s sustain it for an entire game. Read More

Ohio State News And Notes: Silver Bullet Points 10.1.13

Written October 1st, 2013 by Clair

Ohio State looks to continue their B1G win streak

  • Old Habits Die Hard: Both Ohio State and Wisconsin have evolved as football programs from their antiquated profiles of 3 yards and a cloud of dust. Yet despite the shiny and remodeled images, The Buckeyes reverted to old school Big Ten football at times during the matchup against the Badgers. Jim Tressel would be proud.
  • Roby Island: The defensive game plan for the Buckeyes became apparent early when Coaches Winters and Fickell loaded up the box and left Bradley Roby on an island for the majority of the game to quell Wisconsin’s run game. However effective with stopping the run for the most part, Bradley Roby got shredded when left to his own devices. He still managed to grab and INT but metal errors lead to the senior to be out of position, penalized and just embarrassed at times by Wisconsin’s Jared Abbrederis.
  • Hall Pass: Offensively Coach Tom Herman admitted at the press conference Monday that he reverted back to old Habits as a play caller and should have gotten Hall more involved in the running attack. Even Braxton Miller, when put under pressure late in the game reverted back to his old habits and missed several “reads” as well.
  • Health Nuts: With a few exceptions the Buckeyes are fairly healthy going into the second game of conference play against a bye week rested Northwestern team. The major injury was sustained by Senior Safety Christian Bryant breaking his ankle on the second to last defensive play of the game vs. the Badgers. Coach Meyer was visibly shaken at his post game press conference and still was unsure about Bryant making a comeback at all for the remainder of his college football career.
  • Next Man Up: Right now Coach Coombs is naming Corey “Pittsburg” Brown as the likely replacement for Bryant although Tyvis Powell and Vonn Bell may also get a shot at the starting spot. The coaches will be watching their athletes closely at practice trying to strike a balance between pushing hard and keeping their athletes healthy for a well rested Northwestern team that excels at getting players open in space.
  • Hello Kitty: The Wildcats are hosting the Buckeyes this Saturday at Evanston with Game Day in tow. The national scene may have initially considered the Wildcats to be an under the radar choice to clench the Big Ten Title but Big Ten fans and specifically Buckeye Fans have had this game marked on our calendars long ago. With head USC head coach Lane Kiffin being escorted off the team bus at LAX after the Trojans loss to Arizona State Saturday, Head Coach Pat Fitzgerald’s name has being tossed into the rumor mill of possibly replacements. All of these factors are adding up to another exciting B1G 10 matchup.

tBBC Fans Interact: Buffalo

Written September 4th, 2013 by WVaBuckeye

This past weekend as the Buckeyes faced the Bulls, we started a new feature here at tBBC. Each week we will feature some hash-tags on twitter and feature your responses to those in a weekly article. While we are at it, we will feature a former Buckeye each week to give their two-cents worth as well and see how you stack up to their thoughts.

This week we’re bringing the “Juice” and featuring Mekka Don! His new Buckeye song hit the skies this past Saturday to a great response in The Shoe.

Juice, Juice, Juice Thank you Mekka!

Juice, Juice, Juice
Thank you Mekka!

#BufTopPlay  Braxton Miller 47 yard TD to Devin Smith. Great throw and great adjustment by Devin.

#BufOMVP Jordan Hall. He ran his butt off today.  Big holes but also showed burst and agility.

#BufDMVP Noah Spence

#BufSTMVP Dontre Wilson. Great kick return!

#BufOUnsung Offensive Line.  They were creating huge holes and giving Braxton (and Kenny) time to throw for the most part.

#BufDUnsung Ryan Shazier.  Despite the injury he was still effective.

#BufMorePT Dontre Wilson, Jalin Marshall, Ezekiel Elliot, Warren Ball. Can’t wait to see what these guys can do!

Read More

tBBC Off-Season Football Roundtable

Written July 30th, 2013 by WVaBuckeye

We are the kings of the roundtable around here . . , errrr Knights maybe? We really enjoy a good roundtable and it’s high time we get caught up a bit on the off-season. Here is our latest installment of such with some help from a few “locals”.

FANS

We’d like to introduce you to Liz; she played in that band from up north, but her son is an I-dotter for TBDBITL and she couldn’t be happier or prouder (story to come from Charles later). Here’s her introduction.

To know my background is to really appreciate my “Buckeye-ness”.  I don’t think it’s a secret to anyone that I reside in TSUN.  I attended TSUN and was the first female tuba player in the MMB.  When my son, Phil, was a junior in high school, we took a random visit to OSU.  He loved it.  Funny thing.  All his life he wanted to go to M*ch*gan and march in their band.  As a music major, you have to attend auditions to the colleges you wish to attend.  To put it simply:  they were awful to him at M*ch*gan.  He was pretty beat up about it.  Completely the opposite at his OSU audition.  He was accepted into the School of Music and began attending tOSU in the fall of 2008.  We’ve taken A LOT of flack for this, but OSU was where he was meant to be.  His sophomore year, he made TBDBITL.  Last season, he was Urban Meyer’s first i-dotter.  While he has graduated from tOSU, he is attending one more semester to take advantage of his final year of eligibility in the band.  This year, he dots SDSU and Purdue.

I love the games.  I go to all of them…even though it’s a 4 hour drive for me on game day.  30 years ago, if you would have told me ANY of this…I would have thought you were nuts. Twitter handle is @osumarchingmom

Next is an old friend of ours from the twitterverse and no stranger to our roundtables, formerly known as CeMoBuckeye, he is simply Dave now. A web developer who has lived in central Missouri his entire life.  That probably makes anyone wonder why he’s a Buckeyes fan over the local favorite, the Missouri Tigers.  His answer to anyone is to show them this play:  Read More

Silver Bullet Points Is A Dead Giveaway

Written May 8th, 2013 by MaliBuckeye

While the details are still coming out, I can’t stop thinking about how amazing the situation in Cleveland was yesterday. We need more folks like Charles Ramsey who would be willing to get involved when it’s easier to just mind their own business. Only one soundtrack possibility today, then.

Silver Dollar Pancakes- Exquisite!

Buckeye 411

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