Buckeye LiveBlog: M*ch*g*n

Written November 26th, 2011 by Eric

Today, the Buckeyes travel to Ann Arbor to participate in the first competitive version of The Game for the last several years.

We’ll be here chatting our way through it with all of our blog friends: The Buckeye Blog, OSU Silver Bullet, Buckeye House Call, Our Honor Defend, Men of the Scarlet and Gray, and Fox Sports Ohio.

The Game kicks off at Noon, the LiveBlog will lead off at 11:30.

Go Bucks, Beat M*ch*g*n!

What do you Want to see on Saturday? M*ch*g*n Edition

Written November 25th, 2011 by Eric

After stuffing our bellies full of delicious dead bird, it’s finally time to ignore the family again and focus on the things that truly matter.

Eric

It's just about time to get back to this.

Defensive Heart. I want to see the defense come out and play, and I mean really play. They need to repeatedly attack M*ch*g*n in the backfield, and get Shoelace on the turf as often as possible.

A worthy offensive gameplan. If Bollman comes into this game with his standard Walrusball offense it will be a disservice to the rivalry. The point of The Game is to try to win, not trying to make the other team’s defense look better than they really are.

A Jake Stoneburner touchdown. He finally got one last week against Penn State after not catching one for about 8 straight games. Time to go back to him again. If you want to do it more than once, I won’t complain.

Weeping M*ch*g*n fans. This has been the bandage on the wound that was the Cooper years. Not seeing it won’t rip it off, but it will certainly slow the healing. Yes, M*ch*g*n fans, we still haven’t done enough to you to close that wound. Maybe another decade of soul crushing will be sufficient.

Beat M*ch*g*n. This is the single most important thing we do all year. Go get it Bucks!

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Across The Web: THE GAME

Written November 25th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

For our last blogger chat of the season, we approached several writers for TTUN to see if they could manage to actually string a few one syllable words together… but unfortunately, most of them were in jail. Then we remembered that the great MZone had re-opened their shop, and were happily cranking out photoshop coping mechanisms. We emailed Yost about joining us, and once he’d sobered up he sent us what you see below.  Be sure to follow their stuff on twitter, and also on an upcoming edition of “COPS”.

Do you ever feel dirty rooting for the Maize and Blue?  Do you ever get one of those shudders like pure evil has settled into your soul?

Wonder What He's Been Eating?

Never dirty, just horribly dazed watching what passed for our beloved Wolverines the last three years.   And if you’ve been following the Maize and Blue this season, as you know, the only evil emanating out of A2 is of the Pop Evil variety.  While, as the world knows, the evil that spews forth from Columbus is more of a Mordor strain.

What’s your favorite memory of The Game? On the other end of the spectrum, what play or game gives you nightmares?

Near the top of the “good” list are ’95 and ’96 when Michigan wasn’t given a chance and Ohio State was undefeated and, I believe, #2 in the country both times.  Of the two, I think I enjoyed ’96 a tad more just because it was in Columbus.  That was the 13-9 Michigan win that swung U-M’s way when Shawn Springs slipped and fell allowing Tai Streets to score on a 69 yard slant.  OSU had been up 9-0 at halftime and you could almost hear the dread as it settled over the stadium.  My god, I’m getting weepy just thinking about it again.  But I digress.

Actually, at the top of my fave list has to be ’97 when #1 Michigan faced off against #4 OSU with everything on the line.  The Game initially looked to be a Wolverine rout with Charles Woodson returning a punt for a TD (you seen that replay once or twice, right?).  But when OSU cut U-M’s 20-0 lead to 20-14, you could hear a car key jingle pin drop in The Big House.  Thankfully, Michigan held on and then won the Rose Bowl to claim a National Championship.

It was the stakes of ’97 and what a victory meant that made it so meaningful and memorable.  Conversely, that’s precisely why 2006 still gives me nightmares.  For the first time in history, Michigan and Ohio State were #1 and #2 at the time of The Game.  OSU had the big lead at halftime but Michigan fought back.  With 6:49 left, Michigan had cut the lead to 35-31.  OSU had the ball on the Michigan 38 yard line, 3rd and 15.  Troy Smith rolled out and threw an incomplete pass.  Michigan was gonna get the ball back with a chance to drive down for the winning score.  But… Read More

Silver Bullet Points Has One Shot Left

Written November 22nd, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

If You're Gonna' Go, Go Big.

Buckeye 411

  • Captain, My Ca… Ah, Screw It- At this point, no captains have been named for this week’s matchup with TTUN.  I’m sure it’s Brewster, Simon, and some other folks.
  • Injury Report- Sweat is a “doctor’s decision”, due to it being a head injury.  Philly Brown is going to be OK, but safety Christian Bryant is “questionable” for the game. No additional information on Bryant, but he’s currently listed as the starter on this week’s depth chart.
  • Fickell Speaks- On “The Game”;

It’s still the Ohio State/M*chigan game, still the greatest rivalry in all sports. We wouldn’t attack it any other way. That’s what is remembered. We understand that. We know that. Our guys have understood that regardless of what the situation has been in the last 10 years that I’ve been here or even the five years I was here as a player.

When you come here, you know what it’s about. That’s why I’d say 70 percent of our guys are from that 250 mile radius, been grown up, born into it, and know more about what this rivalry is all about than most.

  • More From Fickell- This exchange was a great one between Coach Fickell and a member of the press,

Your Michigan counterpart refers to your employer just as “Ohio.” Have you noticed that, first of all?

…Coach Bruce or Coach Hayes used to not refer to the team up north or whatever that is, hopefully that it’s no disrespect to Ohio University, they are Ohio, but it is what it is.

We might refer to M*chigan in different ways, too. Read More

The Week That Were: 11.05.11

Written November 7th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

The Week That Were looks at the hyperbolic and the unexpected. Once again, I was wandering around the wilderness on gameday, which explains why Stevie makes a repeat appearance as our soundtrack for “The Review Of The Century”:

NOTE- Scroll down for our comments regarding Penn State coverage.

Knowing Your Target Demographic

Well, let’s get right to it… the game that many saw as a pick-em at kickoff, between the top two teams in the country, was the “highlight” of an interesting week.  Sorry for those of you playing the “oversigning” drinking game- in the hours and hours of lead up and coverage, not a single mention of the biggest issue behind the scenes for this matchup. At least you could be the Designated Driver, right?

As for the game itself- it was a classic matchup of two solid defenses. Or, it was a clash between two teams that could not offensively amount to much of anything. It all depends on your perspective, I reckon.

That’s not to say that there weren’t moments to enjoy, though. I’m someone who normally appreciates defensive struggles but also hates soccer,  and I can admit the players that Alabama and LSU didn’t run off during the offseason put on the field showed the “SEC Speed” that we continue to hear so much about during home game bowl season. To keep Trent Richardson in check when he’d been running through offenses like he was a fancy car or something… that’s significant. These teams both were firing on all cylinders on the defensive side of the ball, even if they couldn’t outscore a baseball game.

Only one thing frustrated me, to be honest- Les Miles absolutely should have faked the third down field goal and gone for the touchdown.  Lester… man, you’re getting soft. Saban, on the other hand, was in championship form- I can see why people want to play for him… he’s so cuddly! Read More

Silver Bullet Points Preps For A Night Hunt

Written October 25th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

Tuesday’s update from the Ohio State press conference and the rest of college football news…

Don't Need No Stinking Badgers

Buckeye 411

  • Getting Deep- Interesting notes from the depth chart this week: Boom is #1 with Hall/Hyde behind him. Miller is QB1, with Guiton OR Bauserman, although Fickell said that Kenny G has been getting more of the snaps in practice. Curtis Grant is now in the 2 deep at LB; there’s speculation that Ohio State will be running more of the traditional 4-3 look due to Wisconsin’s running attack
  • Fickell Speaks-Historically, Ohio State has struggled the week after a bye. Coach addressed this,

Yeah, I think we did. We got a lot of work done. Our guys did a heck of a job on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. You look back in the years past, ask around how people handled their bye week, you still have to look at your team and figure out what you guys need as opposed to how everybody else does it. I think we did a very good job with the attitudes and getting the work done we needed to get done.

  • Captain, My Captain- Brewster, Sweat, and Simon.  I think we’ve found our permanent captains, folks.
  • On Wisconsin- Coach Fickell spoke about the big upset in East Lansing, and confessed that he’d gone to bed before the game went final. He spoke at length about the impact that Russell Wilson has had on the Badgers, and how he’s fit into the system from early on. Of course, Wisconsin’s success starts up front, and their line play dictates every aspect of their offensive game plan.
  • The Future- As usual, Luke Fickell said that he focuses on the things he can control, and hasn’t given much thought to the pending NCAA sanctions or what benchmarks he might need to meet to be given another year at the helm of the Buckeyes. Interesting that he was asked these questions with Gene Smith in the room; others in attendance said that Smith didn’t flinch during this line of questioning at all.
  • Fickell Funnies- When he wasn’t talking about slinging the ball around with his kids, he joked regarding his “to do” list to keep his job for the 2012 season, saying, Read More

Silver Bullet Points Hunts In The Backyard

Written October 19th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

For once, SBP could serve as a public service announcement, particularly for the folks in the Zanesville area.

Might Be Useful

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.

Buckeye 411

  • Injury update: Again, nothing huge, but Coach Fickell said today that Travis Howard was running without problems, and that Braxton also looked pain free in the Buckeye’s 45 minute practice.
  • Can’t Bye Me Love: Coach Fickell was adamant that he’s not a “bye week” kind of guy, and that this week gives them the opportunity to get healthy and work on some of the things that they’ve struggled with. “Getting better”, “men of action”, and so forth.
  • That Being Said: Zach Boren seemed excited for the break, and mentioned that he played around 50 plays against Illinois on Saturday. Defensively, Johnathan Hankins also got in about 60 snaps or so; these guys have more than earned a little break of sorts.
  • Captain, My Captain: No captain announcement du jour, but major kudos to tBBC favorite John “Sandman” Simon for being named the B1G defensive player of the week. Hankins called him the perfect teammate, and said he’s “not a normal guy”. See earlier comments. Read More

The Week That Were- 9.24.11

Written September 25th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

Time for the stroll through the week’s absurdity in college football… this week’s soundtrack is inspired by a conversation with a colleague and the Stomping in the ‘Shoe- Enjoy the Stone Foxes.

Spelling? Check. Planning? Meh...

The big game of the week, according to the folks at the four letter network, was Saturday Night’s matchup between LSU and West By God Virginia. When the smoke had cleared (not from burning couches, ironically), all we knew was how good the Tigers are, particularly on defense.  That’s not a commentary on their O- it’s great to see Princeton HS star Spencer Ware excel- but the fact of the matter is that the LSU defense is the best in college football.  In today’s poll has Les Miles’ team at the top, and given their victories over ranked teams (Oregon, Mississippi State, WVa), I can’t say that I disagree.  You want to be the man? Beat the man… and LSU has done just that.

Those who might be wondering how LSU manages to both recruit top athletes AND to keep them motivated may have found an answer on Saturday night- I’m pretty sure that’s a benefit, although I will withhold judgement on if it’s improper (mostly ’cause I’m jealous). Read More