It was a spectacular Saturday night in Ohio Stadium, 105,826 sat in Ohio Stadium and watched the Buckeyes drag Wisconsin to the finish and dump them in the ditch by the finish line for a 31-24 victory. We are now 5-0, we are 17-0 in the Urban Meyer era, the goal of lifting the crystal football is in tact and the universe will spin smoothly in greased grooves for another six days until we go to a night game in Chicago where the Buckeyes will play Northwestern at Ryan Field. Let’s take a look at what is right, what is wrong and what is sorry in the latest Bucks victory over W’Sconsin.
The elimination of controversy is always a good thing and that is what Braxton Miller did. Braxton Miller went 17 of 25 throwing the ball, that is 68% completions for you math majors out there. He threw four touchdown passes, three of them were longer than 25 yards. The deep ball was well thrown and right on target. Braxton ran for 83 net yards, throw out the sacks and he had 98. Kenny Guiton is a good quarterback but the performance Braxton had is exactly what this team needed moving forward. Braxton’s performance settles any controversy that the media might have attempted to drum up about quarterback controversy. We can and should feel good about Kenny Guiton as our backup because chances are he will get more snaps before the year is over. For now though, Braxton is healthy, he played a very solid game and he is the leader of this team.
Dontre Wilson is amazing, 108 all purpose yards 21 rushing, 21 receiving and 66 on returns. The young man showed the ability to break tackles more than I have seen in his previous appearances. Dontre is the fastest person I have seen in an Ohio State uniform. If this young man was on the stock market he would be a definite blue chipper. If Braxton Miller doesn’t win a Heisman before his senior year, I’m calling it right now, Dontre Wilson will.
Defensively, I want to say something nice about the defense before moving on, so I have to give the defense props for holding Wisky to only 104 rushing yards as team. The defense was led by Ryan Shazier with 9 solo tackles. The Silver Bullet’s forced 38 yards in negative plays, 2 sacks on Stave and the rest were negative runs that the defense swarmed.
Tackling, or the lack thereof is becoming a real issue for this team. Everybody wants to go for the kill shot rather than stick and wrap. We missed more tackles than Gandhi missed meals. This defense is an exciting group athletically, they’re young and there best football is in front of them but next week against Northwestern, they have to do a better job of tackling in space. They need to take better angles, make the offense player break down to cut or move and then make the hit. It seems like every one wants to build there highlight reel by making the SportsCenter tackle, how about being fundamental. I will take a stick and wrap and a shut out over three spectacular hits and giving up three touchdowns.
The loss of Christian Bryant will put people on the field that are very athletically talented but very inexperienced. It is going to be fascinating to see how the Coach Withers and Coach Fickel deal with this challenge. Look for Corey ‘Pitt’ Brown to get the first shot at the safety position. Maybe Vonn Bell or Tyvis Powell step up. It is football, people get hurt and the next man has to step up. This is Ohio State so it isn’t like the next guy chopped liver. Still losing a senior captain is a big hole to fill.
The ugly section should always be short when the Buckeyes win and it will be but there was plenty of ugly on the defensive side of the ball.
Giving up 200 plus yards in receptions to Jarred Abrederis is unacceptable. How does a guy that looks like he wasn’t called back for a second interview on Duck Dynasty abuse Bradley Roby like a small child. In a national televised game, Abrederis shined, taking our future first round draft pick to the wood shed 10 different times. Ugly is the only word that describes it.
This team is doing what experts thought it would do. It is excellent on offense and sketchy on defense.
The Buckeyes are going to need two of the three teams in front of us to lose to have a chance to play for the crystal football.
Clemson plays in the Almost Competitive Conference so there is a good chance of that happening. Oregon will run into somebody smart enough to change tempo on them and will lose one in the PAC 12. In the thug deluxe that is the Southeastern conference and the way Bama has played, they aren’t guaranteed of going undefeated either. One of those three losing won’t get us there, we need at least two of them to lose.
Ohio State also has to keep on winning. A loss by the Bucks will keep them out of the national championship picture.
Everything we as Buckeye fans want out of this season is still there for our team to claim. One week at time. On to Chicago.