Editor’s note: You know it’s been a bad week when you suddenly realize that the post below, which was written on Tues., never made it to the publish stage. Never one to let a good Michigan joke go to waste, better late than sorry. UCF commentary to follow soon.
Four plays. That’s what it took to for the Buckeyes to transition from the struggling team we saw in 2011 to the explosive offense we were hoping to see in 2012. For an entire quarter we watched as the Buckeyes flubbed their way to a measly 48 yards. For 15 minutes, it appeared that this was going to be a serious rebuilding year for the Buckeyes.
I don’t know what happened or what was said during the quarter break but suddenly all the opening problems were gone as Ohio State put up nearly double the first quarter yardage on their opening possession of the second quarter. Although the credit for the turnaround seems to be going to Devon Smith for his amazing one-handed end zone catch, the spark happened before that. Suddenly the hurry-up offense was working and the Buckeyes were moving the ball, fast. In a little over a minute they had moved the ball 83 yards down the field and changed the shape of Ohio State football.
Braxton, Braxton and More Braxton
Once Braxton Miller got going he turned out to be all we had hoped he would be and more. Not only did Miller put up a record breaking 161 yards on the ground, he did it with style. From crazy stutter steps to downright speed, Miller established himself as a serious threat on the ground. If he ever develops the stiff arm of Terrelle Pryor, there will be no stopping him.
Add some Hyde, Can’t Wait for Hall
Carlos Hyde only added to the Red Hawks difficulties as he racked up 82 yards on 17 carries (4.8 avg.). The more I watched Hyde the more I liked him. He was able to pound the ball right up the middle and at times he appeared to be carrying the entire Miami defense with him. I’m really looking forward to the return of Jordan Hall and the triple threat of Hall, Hyde and Miller.
Defensively, I wasn’t as impressed. It’s not like they didn’t know Miami was going to throw the ball? That’s all they’ve got. Thankfully, the Miami receivers refused to catch the ball as they sure seemed to find themselves open.
The good news is that the Buckeye D completely eliminated the Red Hawk rushing game holding them to -1 yrd.
Who isn’t liking the look of the special teams. Remember back when Coach Tressel’s special teams turned the punt into an offensive play (bury them deep, hold them w/defense and force or better, block the punt)? Blocked/flubbed punts may be an issue for opponents all season and I like it.
I can’t tell you how frustrated I am that top-ranked schools such as Alabama continue to schedule out of conference patsies just to run the score. Sure, it’s one thing to play the in-state fund raiser but for Alabama’s desire to put up points against lesser teams just for the sake of rankings is really getting annoying.
Thank you Sparty
Although I was getting a little concerned, it was good to see Michigan State finally take control and knock Boise out of the BCS discussion. If they had lost, not only would we have had another year of the Boise BCS spoiler, we’d have even more questions about the Big Ten.
How hard is it to even watch these guys? I’ve avoided getting too deep into this discussion but Joe Paterno was supposed to represent everything that was good about college football. I’m afraid that seeing them collapse against Ohio University may only be the first in a number of such performances in the years to come. The tattoos didn’t burst my bubble but this surely did.