On a day filled with absurdly high scoring games, it is good to see that the Ohio State Buckeyes and the Michigan State Spartans can still grind out an old-school style Big Ten style defensive struggle. It’s also to see that although this Buckeye football team still has room to grow, we are seeing big improvement since the opening game against Miami.
At today’s press conference Coach Urban Meyer said that Jrdan Hall is suffering from a PCL tear in his knee and will most likely be out this week against Nebraska. From there it’s week to week. Just when we get both Hall and Hyde at the same time, we lost them. Let’s hope he heals quick and is back soon. I really like the combined play that both Hall and Hyde bring to the game.
Defensively the Buckeyes did exactly what they needed to do against Michigan State–contain Le’Veon Bell and force the Spartans to pass. The Buckeyes all but shut down Bell bringing him from a season average of 152.5 yards per game to a paisley 45 yards on 17 carries (that’s only 2.6 yards/carry folks). Michigan State was not able to convert any 3rd downs or score on the ground.
The Spartan receivers did have their moments but for much of the game, they seemed determined to drop the ball before they even caught it (if that makes sense).
If ever there was a low point though it came on a 3rd quarter Michigan State pass to Keith Mumphrey. An ESPN highlight Saturday night counted at least seven missed tackles (link is not same highlight). Although the Buckeyes have gotten better at wrapping the ball carrier, they sure forgot it on that play. I’ve seen better tackling at a party casino.
If you’re out there Chris Spielman, we’d still love to see you on the sidelines.
Although once again Braxton Miller carried the brunt of the workload (23 carries/126 yards) it was good to see Carlos Hyde back in the mix. Hyde’s pounding carries up the middle, convert the first down and eat clock was exactly what the doctor ordered. Hyde also put up more yardage on fewer carries than MSU’s Bell (11/49).
Once again though Miller took a beating. The good news is that the passing game continues to improve with Corey “Philly” Brown pulling down 12 passes for 86 yards and Devon Smith once again making the highlight reels breaking free for a perfect pass from Miller for a touchdown.
It was also good to see that for the few plays that Miller was out, Kenny Guiton seemed to keep up the pace without problem.
Stay Classy Spartans
Although the Michigan State Riot Team had to scuttle their plans for Saturday night, the Michigan State fans maintained the proud traditions of Michigan State chanting, “Miller’s a pussy” at Miller as he lay on the sideline after receiving a late hit out of bounce and in turn, bouncing his head off a cabinet on the sidelines. Deadspin adjusted the sound levels so you can hear it exactly as Miller did as he recovered from the hit.
And then of course there’s MSU freshman Jack Allen who attempted to pry Big Hank’s eyes out as laid on the ground in the pile up. Unlike Miller, who laid as still as possible so as not to exasperate potential injury to William Gholston who appeared to be motionless on top of him, the Spartans train ‘em young.
LSU Get’s What they Deserve
As the Buckeyes continue to work their way up the AP poll, it’s good to see that the AP has stepped up and dropped LSU from second to fourth place in the polls. When a team is struggling to find positives in a 16 point win, there is a serious problem with the system. Although a financial windfall for Townson, LSU had no business scheduling Townson this late in the season and it bit them in the butt.
Fortunately for LSU, they are in the SEC and a big win over Arkansas will be sure to drive them back up the rankings.
West Virginia’s Gino Smith is getting his share of Heisman attention after throwing for 656 yards in a ridiculous 70-63 win over Baylor. I’m sorry but Heisman performances should require an opposing defense to take the field.