Five Things: Wisconsin

By Chris Lauderback on October 18, 2010 at 5:00a

Despite the fact we all handle losses in different ways as evidenced by the Vent thread and my Sunday morning hangover, I think it's safe to say we all can agree on what we witnessed, which was one team seizing the moment while the other seemed to get lost in it (Red Zone?!?!). I couldn't even stomach completing my usual Sunday morning replay so hopefully my version of events is as accurate as my game notes. I'll try to be careful and not dwell on all the negatives from Saturday night because there were also a few positives sandwiched between the curb stomping in Madison. I tried to OD on the anti-sarcasm pills so let's see how this goes...

decisions, decisions

Naturally, with any loss a rabid fan base is going to arm chair quarterback. It's in our DNA. And just as I read in a few comments last night, I don't think there's anything wrong with that though some readers apparently do. Whatever. I'm not going to lambaste Tress or call for his head but I do think it's reasonable to question a few things from Saturday night.

First, I want to say how thankful I am that Kyle is in charge of attending pressers because I don't think I could sit there week after week and listen to Tressel talk about how important special teams are only to watch the Buckeyes get thoroughly dominated in that facet of the game. The timing of the KO return for a TD was absolutely dreadful in that it got the crowd even more amped and seemed to give some Buckeyes kind of an uh-oh feeling. I think Pryor even talked after the game how that play was an early dagger. You'd hope the team could overcome it but that sure did put a lot of pressure on the offense to go out and answer - whether it should have or not - and they couldn't respond. In turn, that put pressure on the D to go out and get the ball back - and they couldn't respond either. Maybe I'm overplaying it but the KO return seemed to have a hangover effect in that 1st half. One last rant on it - are we sure Aaron Gant belongs out there? He seems to whiff quite a bit and if after four years in the program he still can't supplant a very raw and ineffective Orhian Johnson at strong safety... Does he deserve a spot on special teams? I'm not trying to pile on - I think it's a very legit question.

Regarding actual in game coaching decisions, some folks in that notorious vent thread also took issue with the offensive play calling. Overall, I didn't have major issues with the calls but there were some exceptions. Tressel and company flat out botched OSU's first trip to the red zone. Trailing 21-0, they needed six, not three, but Tress got ultra conservative and predictable, somewhat wasting what should've been an "answer" drive. Riding Boom's hard running behind a line that opened a few creases, the Buckeyes marched from their own 32 to Wisky's 3 yard line setting up 1st and goal. Inexplicably, Tress dialed up a couple Pryor runs up the gut between a Boom run with no lead blocker out of the Wildcat. Why not roll Pryor out with the option to run/pass at least once during that sequence? Or if he wanted to run, why not have a fullback lined up behind Pryor? That sequence was junk.

And lastly, where do you stand on Tressel's decision to punt on 4th and 10 from the OSU 29 trailing 28-18 with roughly 6:30 left in the game? Sure, the offense on that possession was in total disarray after two straight incompletions from Pryor followed by the Posey drop of a poorly thrown ball but the defense had just got done surrendering a crushing 10 play, 73 yard TD drive leaving little confidence - in me at least - that they could get a stop. Don't you have to go for it there? 4th and 10 wasn't going to be an easy conversion but the alternative seemed even less likely, so much that so that Pat Forde couldn't resist accurately assessing Tressel's decision:

"The Buckeyes faced a fourth-and-10 at their 29 at that point -- a tough down to convert. But it certainly was no tougher than the Tressel plan at that point. When asked about it afterward, he said it was probably easier to hold Wisconsin, get the ball back and score, recover an onside kick and score again.

If you say so, Tress. But when your defense gave up a drive for the clinching field goal, it was all over but the unconvincing postgame spin that everything was going to be OK."

I know. I'm not a Forde fan either but it's like he read my mind, and probably yours. We needed to go for it on 4th down to have a chance. Period.

DAne is a boss

Devier Posey may be the #1 receiver from an NFL prospect vantage point but there's no question Dane is the best receiver on this football team. Comparing the two in my mind as I type just frustrates me further because I'm forced to recall yet another instance in which Posey was stricken with a case of the drops, and even worse - far worse - a recurring case of alligator arms. Already down 21-3, Posey appeared to show a lack of gumption on a 2nd down and 9 throw from Pryor over the middle. He basically stopped his route and half heartedly stuck out his arms though OSU was threatening to put up points and badly needed the yards. The incompletion was followed up by a sack on 3rd down - Shugarts got beat - then a missed 45 yard FGA to keep the Buckeyes from gaining any momentum headed to the half. Late in the 2nd half, Posey's drop on 3rd and 10 with OSU on life support trailing 28-18 turned out to be the final nail in the coffin.

Meanwhile, Dane spent the entire night leading by example, hauling in passes and sacrificing his body as if he was in the True Blood cast. Sanz defined leadership on this night grabbing six balls for 94 yards regardless of the impending punishment. A major play included his 3rd and 9 reception for 11 yards on OSU's first possession of the 2nd half following a Pryor scramble. Dane got loose and took a shot but held on to move the chains and OSU would score three plays later on a Boom Wildcat to make it 21-10.

On the ensuing offensive possession following a 5 and out by the D, Dane assisted on a mammoth 19 play, 94 yard TD drive with a 20 yard grab on 1st and 10 at the OSU 39 but his biggest play would come moments later. Still trailing 21-10 and desperately needing points to hopefully make Wisky uneasy, the Buckeyes faced 3rd and 6 at the Badger 37 yard line. After a wild scramble, Pryor threw high to Dane but the senior captain did his best Gonzo Redux and hauled in the 9 yard reception despite being flipped. Amazing grab. The catch extended the drive allowing Boom to score eight plays later cutting the lead to 21-18. You are a boss, Dane Sanzenbacher. Bottom line, Posey may have the physical tools and he truly seems to be an all around great kid who wants to improve (his interviews are always amazingly professional) but Dane's leadership, desire, sure handedness and dedication to details make him the guy the young receivers should pattern themselves after. He will be missed more than a lot of us realize.

punked in the trenches

Though the rushing stats don't look as lopsided as it felt (OSU 155 yards, 3.8 ypc / WISC 184, 4.3) the defensive line was absolutely dismantled when it mattered most. At times, the Badger front seemed to have little trouble pushing the defensive line off the ball and back into the linebackers, who didn't exactly have a great night themselves. Again scanning the Vent thread, I was surprised that virtually nobody brought up Cameron Heyward, as if he's a sacred cow or something. I will never argue dude isn't a beast and he is lining up at end, not tackle, but he was virtually non-existent Saturday night. I didn't chart plays this time around but it sure felt like Wisconsin repeatedly attacked Larimore and Heyward's side of the line with big time success. At the very least, I don't need to read anymore "I wanna have a season like Suh" fluff. Nathan Williams was also fairly invisible which shocked me. Going in, I felt he was having the best season of any Buckeye defender at their respective position. Strange how the season goes. Here I am most worried about the secondary coming into the season (though not necessarily against Wisconsin specifically) and it's the defensive line that fails to stand up to the test when the rubber hits the road. Of course, the secondary was far from untouchable as Chekwa getting burnt a few times when OSU still had a chance late was like a punch in the gut but in the end, I still felt the defensive line was most responsible for the unfavorable showing from the Bullets. It felt like Wisconsin always had 2nd and short or manageable, further compromising the defense as Wisconsin could employ the full playbook. The TD drive after OSU cut it to 21-18 was sheer agony in this vane.

Meanwhile, the Buckeye offensive line didn't completely disappoint me but that's probably because I've come to expect so much less from them in comparison to their defensive counterparts. I continue to think the middle of the line is fairly stout with Boren, Brewster and Browning opening up some lanes for Boom (seemed like a chunk of succesful runs were up the gut) but this group is still incredibly inconsistent on the outside. Adams and Shugarts simply don't seem to be improving at a rate necessary for this line to function as a consistent unit in a big game. Maybe he is anyway, but if not, those two bookends sure helped Watt look like the best DE on either team. And Pryor probably deserves an assist for holding on to the ball far too long in some cases but however you slice it, a highly mobile Pryor has now been sacked, what, 14 times, I think. Ridiculous.

Boom gets it

Though he was only the third best RB carrying the ball Saturday night, Boom Herron had another solid performance offering up a 19 carry, 91 yard effort, good for 4.8 per carry. Similar to Dane, Boom is a guy that truly approaches games in a workmanlike fashion and I felt he really ran with a purpose, never giving up on a play. Often maligned by a fanbase in desparate need of a Beanie or Eddie, or even a Pittman, Boom often put the Buckeye offense in winnable downs and was a major factor on all three scoring drives.

On the frustrating drive that stalled at the Wisky three resulting in a 21-3 Badger lead, Boom caught a pass for six yards and rushed five times for 37 yards. His back to back gashes of 14 and 16 yards moved the ball from the Wisconsin 33 to the 3 setting up 1st and goal. On the 10 play, 77 yard TD drive to start the 2nd half that put OSU back in the game, Boom carried the ball six times for 37 yards including a speedy dash around left end out of the Wildcat for the 13 yard touchdown. Finally, on OSU's TD drive cutting the deficit to 21-18, Boom toted to rock on 8 of the 19 plays, mostly out of the Pistol, and while he only logged 21 yards, he did find the endzone on a 1 yard run on 2nd and goal.

Overall, Boom's 4.8 ypc was his 2nd best performance of the year (5.7 LW against IU), and his 19 carries were also his 2nd highest this season. For the year, he's averaging 4.6 ypc, and while far from prolific, it's up from the dismal 3.9 a year ago.

Now what?

I hoped this post would wash the game away and cleanse my soul but even if it does, where do the Bucks go from here? I guess the good news for the immediate future is that there probably won't be a hangover effect with the Purdue game already having been circled since the self-inflicted fisting of a year ago. Coming off a loss, I have to imagine the defense will be chomping at the bit to get back on the horse. Meanwhile, the offensive line best come to play because Kerrigan will have designs on eating Pryor's lunch. Speaking of Pryor, I'm interested to see how he responds to a mediocre performance that would be falling under much larger scrutiny had so many other facets of the team not gotten exposed in Madison. What do you think - will the Buckeyes come out smoking against the Boilers?

I'm sure all the scenarios have been played out for OSU to still earn a clearly reachable BCS bowl game but I probably won't care about that until at least midweek. The rest of the schedule looks favorable excepting the road game in Iowa City. Though that team won't have the combo of offensive line and RB talent that the Badgers came with, they will obviously be similarly dangerous in that they are looking for payback, they are tough at home, feature vets at key spots and have a DE that can overwhelm our tackles in a game changing fashion. For completely unscientific reasons, I expect the Buckeyes to win the five remaining conference games but after another big game failure, I'm already fretting about a bowl game. A no-win proposition against Boise? A potentially disinterested Buckeye squad taking on Arkansas or South Carolina in the Capital One if they can't run the rest of the table?


Comments Show All Comments

REJOSU's picture

When we make it to #1, it just seems that we don't believe we should be there and play to reflect that.  This season, in my mind, was supposed to be "The One" more than any other.  As a student in my junior year I wonder what happens from here.  

nickma71's picture

I guess it is hard to find comments about Heyward being ineffective in all the posts.

Poe McKnoe's picture

Williams, Simon, and Larimore were getting blown a yard or two off the ball, Heyward was getting dominated at the line of scrimmage, so he did the least worst job.

Personally, I was shocked when Heacock called this his best d-line ever.  On paper, maybe.  This is basically the same line that blew up Wisconsin last year, but haven't been able find pressure unless they are laying under Hankins after a play.  They haven't been able to find sacks this year, and when you can't find them against Marshall or EMU, you're not going to find them against Wisconsin.

There's a couple of starters and 2nd stringers on this team that make you wonder how, at Ohio State, they are the best options we have.  Duane Long rips on Gant as 'Mr. 5.4' forty.  I think we now see why CJ Barnett won the starting job over Orhian Johnson.  I'll side with Antonio Pittman and think he's the softest Ohio State safety in a long time.  He is not Terrelle Pryor at safety.  Maybe eventually.  You don't arm tackle John Clay because John Clay doesn't get arm tackled.  The difference between him and Anderson Russell is that Russell was at least in position to make plays and couldn't, OJ isn't even position to make a play (he had 8 stops, but anyone who watched the game would be shocked by that stat).

Adams and Shugarts are athletic enough, but I still think Jim Bollman is like an iceberg to our Titanic.  It's easy to make him the scapegoat, but every time the line and offense look bad in a loss (or a win), I look at the offensive line coach and the offensive coordinator, thus: Bollman.  He should take a sabatical and rewatch game tape of the Wisconsin offensive line handling the OSU defensive lines and opening up holes Lydell Ross could run through.

Is it Saturday Yet's picture

Leading up to this game Tress constantly reminded everyone that this team is physical. I guess only a few players heard that as this was evident by their play. They seemed to be caught off guard by how hard Wisky was hitting them. I don't mind the punt, but not throwing the ball in the red zone caused me some grief. I'm ready to put this behind me and watch the Bucks extract some revenge on Purdon't.

Denny's picture

Gozobacher is the best.


E-roc's picture

My oh-so-very-flaccid-bullet points:

  • Tear drops. Welcome back TP arm-punts and freshman-year decision-making.
  • Short bussin' it. Another week, another game where tOSU's special teams came and left on the short bus. From this point forward, kick-offs should be only one of two things: 1) a squib kick, 2) a kick out of bounds. F*ck kicking it deep ever again this season with a half-azz coverage squad.
  • HOLE-y D-line. It's not as good as advertised, and it's time to move/keep Heyward at DE as he got pushed around like a nerdy HS kid. Wisky also exposed tOSU's lack of safety support (Moeller & Barnett, how desperately they need you out there). It's hard to place blame on the LBs when the DL can't hold it's position.
  • If anyone got a Buckeye Leaf... it better have only gone to Boom and Dane. Everyone else should run one mile for each leaf collected to-date.
  • M.I.A. - Defensive line. Defensive backs. Linebackers. QB pressure. Semblance of intelligent play-calling. Saine in the slot. Saine wheel-routes. Posey 8 yd out-routes. Stoneburner. Offensive tackles. Kick-off coverage. Kick-return blocking. Run-blitzes. Press coverage.
  • Get me a barf-bag - When bobblehead Brent is comparing JJ Watt to Jared Allen, you know you have SIGNIFICANT problems at Offensive Tackle.
  • We were who they thought we were - If anything, it's clear that the pundits who believed that tOSU's cupcake schedule, with a Miami cream-filling, should not have promoted the Buckeyes to the #1 last week.
  • The season will be salvaged with.... a win against scUM. Right now, that's the ONLY game I'm concerned about winning.
Doc's picture

E-Roc, I totally agree.  NOBODY should get Buckeye leaves for losses, NOBODY.  Buckeye Stickers go to winners.  Now that we are ranked closer to our real spot the pressure is off and we can move forward.  We need to beat TSUN and Velcro like a redheaded step child.



CJDPHoS Member

The Official DDS of 11W

slippy's picture

There are no leaves awarded in losses.

tampa buckeye's picture

d lost that game not pryor. without him its is a total blowout.

tomcollins's picture

Pryor didn't lose it but didn't do much to win it (besides the one drive).  A lot of bad passes and bad decisions.  Even so, he was running for his life all night thanks to the sieve-like offensive line.  He made something out of nothing enough times for me to excuse him.  He played like an average passer with the ability to run.  We just expect more out of him.  Give Pryor a strong line, and he passes strong.  He just gets rattled so easily.

original buckeye's picture

Agreed.  Pryor kept us in it.  E-roc, you're clueless, brother.

BuckeyeChief's picture

Okay, thoughts in the aftermath:

1. I know everyone is killing our O-line, and quite frankly, I don't think our line played as bad as everyone has advertised...TP had alot of time to throw, wasn't as bad as it seemed.

2. Our D? still trying to figure out what the hell happened?

was this game an abberation due to a hyped up crowd and ambush or an epiphany? Is it gonna be the same from here on out?

"2014 National with it!!!"

RedQueenRace's picture

I also believe the O-line is being unfairly maligned.  Very early in the game they did not look good but later in the first half and much of the second half they got it done.  They looked bad late when Wisky knew we had to throw the ball after the D went out and allowed an answering drive.  The D was far more awful than the O.  Up to 9 guys in the box and we still got ran over.  I was afraid of play action burning us coming into this game.  As it turned out they rarely had to use it.

Even when we did make a stop it seemed it was because they put themselves in a hole with a penalty.

There were multiple instances where Pryor had time to make a pizza from scratch back there and had trouble finding/couldn't find an open receiver.  Against Wisconsin's secondary?  Are the receivers not getting open or is this don't-throw-until-everything-is-perfect-can't-make-a-mistake-and-turn-the-ball-over?

It might be an anomaly.  But looking at our D versus their O they simply looked physically stronger and if that is the case I don't see why a rematch would go much differently.  Offensively we could move on them when the threat of both run and pass was there.

Poe McKnoe's picture

Unfairly maligned with respect to their other performances this year or when compared to Wisconsin's offensive line?  Wisconsin's offensive line should have charged Jim Bollman for the lesson they were teaching.

RedQueenRace's picture

Is Wisconsin's line that good or did our D-line just suck that badly?  We can ask these questions all day.

Some people are acting like the Badgers were camped in the backfield all game.  They weren't.  In fact we gashed them pretty good until either we were in the red zone and called runs without an option to throw or, as I said, when we had to pass and they knew it.  We ran it on them up the middle better than we did against weaker teams this year.  And in terms of pass protection no one was in Pryor's face as soon as the ball was snapped except in that have-to-pass situation.  There were times I could not believe how much time he had and could not find a receiver.

The Badgers didn't roll over ASU like that so I don't think it is entirely that they are that good.

buckeye33's picture

Without being redundant about D-Line...Red Zone..Special teams..etc.  How about the fact that Tolzien was 13 -16 without having to throw past the line of scrimage only a handful of times. Soft cover on the side to Toon & everything was either 1st down or 2nd & 2.  Best line I read......"In one game we lost the National Championship...Big Ten Title & the Heisman" !!!!!!!!!         

chaoscrusader's picture

Special teams - needs a dedicated coach with personnel that can make plays. Going into a hostile environment and giving up an opening kickoff TD set the tone in a horrible manner.

Wiscy was lining up in a two tight-end sets a good majority of the night. Putting the d-line at a disadvantage. For me, the performance of the D-line was twofold, the lineman not playing up to potential, and as important , the coaching staff never really making adjustment. IMO - they needed to take out Orhian and put in another linebacker with speed to have a floating 4-4 look on 1 & 2 downs. I hope they take the lessons learned from Sat. night and apply them to the Iowa game. Homan's injury was huge as the game ended, Sweat did good job playing out of position. Newsome must have fallen into the same abyss as a majority of the d-line.

TP has a little more tweaking to do on his throwing motion, it started to breakdown in the second half,  As Herbie called it, the nose of the ball was pointing downward leading to under thrown balls. Overall the offense did not do badly, they needed to make adjustments faster because Wiscy was chewing up the clock so much that they limited the amount of times the Bucks had possessions.

I score the coaching staff either slow to almost non-responsive in making adjustments. That may have been harsh, because they may have and was limited by injuries. But the end result on the field was that the only time Wiscy was stopped with any consistency was when they stopped themselves.


OHIOinME's picture

I tried to read this as my first OSU anything to read about.  I can't.  I just can't.  I couldn't even watch NFL yesterday.  Just not in the mood for OSU football yet.  Good thing I have my 3 year and 1 month old sons to play with.  I think I need a cold shower.

blazers34's picture

I didnt listen to anything regarding college football yesterday either.  the 40+ text messages I got didnt help

BuckeyeChief's picture

You got 'em too? 1/2 mine where from a Tennessee fan who doesn't watch football, the other where from a So. Carolina fan who is pretty objective, and from the start said we just didn't look right, team was off.

"2014 National with it!!!"

blazers34's picture

funny enough, mine were from a michigan fan.  he was my college roommate and is now an orthopedic surgeon up there.  he doesnt seem to get it that michigan in an embrassment.

Buckeye Black's picture

Well, now we will see what this team is made of. It will be hard to think with all the seniors that this team will roll over. Step up boys and play like the team everyone knows you can be.

btalbert25's picture

The defense was so disappointing to me.  It sucks to get down 21 to 0 but the buckeyes had a great drive to bring the score to 21-18.  You would think at that point they would've had some energy, and come out and make something happen, but nope.  I told my buddy when they got to within 3, this game is over they are going to win by 2 scores.  Then the Defense comes out and lays a turd.  That was the most frustrating thing of the night.

All in and all it was disappointing.  However, I think they will bounce back just fine, and the schedule is pretty good from here on out.  Probably no chance for a national championship now, and that's a shame, but still plenty of opportunity for another Big 10 title and Rose Bowl.

buckeye33's picture

You no longer control your own destiny...we need help.  Big Ten & Rose Bowl...doubt it. They may bounce back, but IOWA will be the only true test.  Like Heavyweight Boxing...once you've been exposed or knocked're never the same.

German Buckeye's picture

All this makes me realize something I hate - the BCS formula.  If we had, say a 16 team playoff to determine the national championship, then this loss (or even two losses) wouldn't get everyone's panties all tied up.  The big picture would still be in tact. 

We got beat.  Soundly.  Ok - bad night, weren't prepared, etc.  Happens.  Bowl Subdivision (former Div I category) programs are largely equitable now.  Pretty much anyone can beat anyone (ex: SC beat #1 Bama, then loses to unranked KY the next week).  It ruins my ability to watch big time college football due to the absolute must prerequisite to go undefeated in order to play for the MNC.  Also, makes life pretty depressing reading all the blogs (11W, MOTSG, BBC, etc) where the majority are negative, arm chair QBs and know "everything" about whats wrong and how to fix it.  I'm sure JT and staff got to where they are because they are good at what they do.  Otherwise, you, me and everyone else on this and other blogs would be on staff at The Ohio State University football program. 

Let's keep perspective and support our team on the remainder of the season. 

"America is not at war. The U.S. Military is at war.  America is at the Mall.  If you don't stand behind our troops, feel free to stand in front of them!"

blazers34's picture

I'm upset, but watching the Bucks isnt MNC or bust for me.  I still enjoy it even if they do lose a few games.  a MNC would be AWESOME, but thats certainly not the only reason I watch.

Squirrel Master's picture

good morning!

I like most did not watch anything or blog anything related to football yesterday. I needed time to calm down.

There are many things I would love to say about Saturday night but I don't think it will make a difference. I do want to try and look on the positive side. OSU is tenth on the BCS standings. I was surprised about that! It really isn't that bad and with some breaks they could be a contender again. If anything it will be another BCS bowl and the streak of BCS games will continue. Playing a season undefeated is tough, although it should have happened. I do feel that at the end of the season, there will only be 2-3 undefeateds and 1-2 of those will be non-AQ teams. A one lose BigTen, SEC, Big12 team could sneak in.

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

builderofcoalitions's picture

To put things in perspective, we're still way better than we were a year ago. This team can still win the conference once MSU folds. (I'm predicting two in a row in the coming weeks.) Iowa looks great, but OSU will actually come in as an underdog for that one. I predict as surprising an outcome as Saturday's. They can still win out. Plus, if they were to somehow fall to a Capital One Bowl, they will get a chance to exercise some SEC demons.

All is not lost. The Buckeyes were punched in the mouth. It's time to get up and make a run.

Because we couldn't go for three.

slippy's picture

That punt was the wrong call, plain and simple.


So not only was I stuck at a wedding and not able to watch the game, but I made a bet with a UW alum at work.  I will be wearing a Wisconsin football shirt all day today.


I tried to watch the ESPN3 replay last night but only made it about 10 plays in.

gravey's picture

I try to remind myself that this is why I like college football and can't get interested in the NFL all that much until the playoffs. Every game counts and there's a realistic chance you'll lose any of them (unless of course you play in a conference that includes the word "west")...

We want a strong Big 10 and here's evidence that we have it. 

I'm sick at the stomach about the loss, but the all-or-nothing nature of the college game is also the reason why I'm high as a kite when our beloved Buckeyes survive and advance.

With my NFL Vikings...a loss or a win is no big deal until the playoffs....and with my Browns...they just let me down easy at the beginning of the season.


tampa buckeye's picture

playoffs. that is all.  

hallow74's picture

Wisky and Sparty both play Iowa.  GO HAWKEYES! 

Colin's picture

this accurately describes my weekend

Squirrel Master's picture

Question, does a one loss team from the BigTen deserve to jump over an undefeated Boise State? I say yes. Especially if the team they lost to stays highly ranked.

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

iball's picture

Scanning the article, I would like to add that I felt Andrew Sweat filled in admirably in a tough situation. He obviously caught the int that TRESS couldn't capitalize on, and if I remember right, came up witha backfield stop on a crucial 3rd and short. I've been down on Sweat since the Miami game, but he obviously shows the work ethic.

OKAY. Pryor throws the ball accurately about 65% of the time, and thats probably lower in big games. But by now, most educated fans realize this. So why in Pete's sake are we STILL forcing him to throw out of the pocket? During the final stretch last year, especially in the RBowl, it was blatantly obvious he operates much more efficiently out of the pocket, keeping defenses worried about him running. He's a run first QB. There's nothing wrong with that, unless the GUY CALLING THE PLAYS, keeps trying to turn him into Tom Brady.

JIM TRESSELL has shown inability to utilize personnel in its most effective manner. Im not calling for his head, but someone please argue that we still do not need a fresh perspective from the offensive standpoint. Tressell, like Mack Brown is a great figure head for the program and he can stay until he's 100 for all I care. But the guy needs help and his refusal to admit that vexes me. VEXES I SAY.

Johnathan Newsome tweets about "hoes" all week leading up to a big game. Playa, if you want to chase hoes, than more power to you. But Id rather have someone who realizes the gifts and opportunities thay have been given and takes necessary measures to ensure they maximize those benefits. YOU POOPED THE BED JNEW.

Lastly, Saturday night I was threatened by a 11W writer with IP banishment for ripping into our teams performance. I was more troubled by that than the actual loss. If I made a derogatory comment based on sex, race, nationality, etc.,etc., then I should be banned. But, threatening banishment of a fan of 11W for doing the exact thing that makes 11W great, is just not smart business. I not only read and contribute daily, but I urge many friends to check out the site and promote it as the best Buckeye blog on the net. That being siad, I respect all opinions of other commenters and reserve the right to disagree as whole heartedly as I feel necessary. 11W is still #1.

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

iball's picture

This isn't a kid focused on football.

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

Matt's picture

Iball, who threatened to boot you?

Squirrel Master's picture

Iball, I usually respect your perspective on this website. Sometimes we can get a little crazy. I was censored because I got a little political. I just make sure to learn from my fault and move on. We do not need to lose your insights.

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

iball's picture

@ Matt, Im not naming names, because I know EVERYONE was a little heated Saturday. Just hurt a little more after that happened.

@SquirrelMaster, I agree, and frankly, the ability to disagree is what makes sites like this great. I fully don't expect to always be agreed with, and I don't expect everyone to like me. I.E., SAM, had many clashes with him in the past, but now, he is someone I tend to agree with more often than not. 

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

Squirrel Master's picture

Opinions are like........ and we all have them! This site gives us the chance to express them. Some I don't agree with, some I do.

Saturday night my brother and I watched the game. After the last interception I walked out. Didn't say a word. My brother understood because he felt the same. It is just to hard not to scream in frustration and take it out on those who we do not agree with. I feel that if someone gets insulted on a blog after what happened, they shouldn't be on it.


I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

CDbucks's picture

Ain't happening, dude. He's never going to change. Never going to hire a real OC. Never going to delegate his responsibilities out to COMPETENT assistants. Never going to let someone else take credit for our success. 

I'm resigned and beat. Jim Tressel IS our coach. Whether we like it or not. The rabid hordes of defenders he has in the fanbase (such as around these here parts) plus the ADs office assures that he's staying on as coach, and coaching IN THIS MANNER, as long as he damn well pleases. 

Coaching in this manner is also a guarantee that we never win another NCG with him at the helm. You can quote me on this and until he proves me wrong all evidence points towards this conclusion. 

And don't give me that bunk about how we won it all back in 02. We did. But we won with killer DEFENSE and some luck. That type of Defense is gone forever because we also had Dantonio back then and the man, as we've all seen this year, has some massive balls and toughness and actual coaching SKILL that heacock lacks, since he's just a Tressel yes-man. 

But if everyone's CONTENT with just challenging for a Big10 title every year and beating up on DickRod while never becoming a truly elite national power, then Tressel is the coach we DESERVE. When you have low expectations, you deserve the low results that come from it. 

I will keep rooting for the buckeyes no matter what, but basically since the USC game last year (by far the most winnable "national stage" game we've had recently) I've given up hope that Tressel will ever change and that we will ever be nationally relevant again. 

The game has passed him by.


/goes off to drink @ lunch

Buckeye Black's picture

If the game has passed Tressel by, then why are the recruits still pouring in every year?  Ultimately the players have to go out and execute, and it just didn't happen in this game.  You will see Tressel's merit as a coach the rest of the season.  Should they go 5-0 in the next five games they will be right in the discussion of the national title.  Not nationally relevant?  Ohio State has been in the most BCS games and is first or second among BCS bowl wins including a national title, it doesn't get much more nationally relevant.

iball's picture

1. The recruits didn't pour in last year, Hicks, Henderson, Joyner and DePriest come to mind. The program recruits itself.

2. Name me a 5 star OSU signee in the last 3 years who hasn't at least been a slight dissappointment. You mean to tell me we are just THAT unlucky? Coaching dude.

3. If we go 5-0 and beat everyone by 50 , we still wont sniff the MNC game. Period. Party's over.

4. Since when does a BCS game besides the MNC mean anything to fans? 1 game matters, the rest are exhibitions. Heck, people still think Oregon is better than OSU.

5. Gordon Gee is burning money for fire wood and wiping his keister on $100 bills, as long as that continues nothing will change. Tress has been good at appeasing die-hard football fans while at the same time meeting expectations set forth by the BOD's. Its called poilitics homeboy.

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

iball's picture

According toi

2010 class rank #20

2009 class rank #1

2008 class rank #4

2007 class rank #16

That averages out to about the 11th best recruiting school in the last four years, and we stand today number 11 in the polls, coincidence??

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

CDbucks's picture


First of all, it's clear that recruiting success doesn't equal coaching success. See: zook, Ron and miles, les. That being said, Tressel has recruited well. But 1. What becomes of the recruits after they get here, especially the linemen, and
2. What if this success is going away now due to our recent flops on the big stage? 
I think that when five star recruits routinely come through your program and underachiever eventually you have to look at the one constant over the whole time and that's he coaching staff. It's on them that our o lines and defenses routinely underachieve. We always only look dominant against the toledos or eastern michigans of the world. 
Last years underwhelming recruiting haul was dismissed by many here as just an off year, no biggie we just reload the next. Fair enough, that's possible. But it's also possible that osu's big game failings are finally starting to catch up to us in recruiting. Most of these high school kids today barely remember 2002. They were still in elementary school. They do however remember the utter embarrassments of 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, etc.
Sooner or later i feel kids won't want to go to a school that routinely gets de pants on national tv and also, for the record, is seemingly horrendous at developing offensive skill players (seriously, take a moment and think about how many buckeyes from the JT era in the NFL play a skill position and are decent? Santonio ... And Santonio. Maybe beanie occasionally.)
And finally, I think it's frankly a miracle that pryor chose to come here. Yea, he wanted to develop as a prostyle qb instead of dominate from the spread at a place like Florida or Michigan. I get that. But what in tressels career has convinced us that he's capable of molding even one starting NFL qb, much less the most highly touted recruit in a generation? The who's who of tressel's qbs in the NFL isn't exactly a murderers row of competence. Smith, his golden boy, can't beat out a washes up product of the spread in Alex smith and another washout named David Carr. Boeckman was so very obviously overmatched even at the college level. Ditto for zwick. We all know how krenzel panned out. 
This years recruiting class may very well be ridiculous and my theory will get blown up if he continues to recruit well, but I think it's the start of a downward trend and good recruiting alone does not a good coach make. Or else we'd all be worshipping the zookster. 
CDbucks's picture

apologies for the typos. was typed on a mobile device during a bus ride.

iball's picture

Yes, I'm feeling a bit OPPRESSED today.

The dollar is the bottom line.

Tress is one penalty away from being JHC.

Beats scUM = keeping old alumni happy

Again, I beg the question, how far will scUM have to fall before it is no longer a rivalry? I lived through the Coop years. I felt the agony. But if we beat scUM 20 times in a row and never sniff an MNC, are we content? Not me.

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

Kyle's picture

I'm not a "Fire Jim Tressel" type after every loss but come on dude!  Please, for love of baby fucking Jesus appoint one man, just one, to be the special teams coach.  This coaching by committee horse shit isn't working.  We all knew that our lack of special teams would cost us at some point.  Well here it is.


Can we please throw like several hundred thousand dollars to the o-line coach at Wisconsin?  That's how your recruit and coach college linemen.  I'm hoping Bollman paid attention to the clinic that was put on, but I'm guessing he didn't because our line never gets markedly better. 


Oh and to Coach Heacock.... Please don't patronize us with this bs about being the best dline you've ever coached.  If that is true then I'm a fucking leprechaun.



iball's picture

Kyle, you are a TRUE fan.

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

plooder's picture

I thought that we had the best defense in the country going into the game.  Now, not so much.  That 9 minute 19 play Wisconsin drive that started with 7+ minutes left in the first quarter was inexcusable.   This game was just rotten.  The good news is that they still have 4 weeks to improve before the Iowa game.  This starts with a little emotion.  This team has seemed to be on an emotional flatline all season.

iball's picture

Withholding criticism due to fear of being labled "fair weather" is truly doing your team, school, workplace, family a disservice.

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

Kyle's picture

I don't know the answer but my guess is somebody on the 11W staff knows, but how much playing time did Big Hank get Saturday?  I know our dline kept getting pushed back and Hank is a big load up front.  Might have made some sense to move Simon outside for some plays to get the big boy on the field.... But I guess that is called an adjustment and that concept is foreign to our staff.

iball's picture

Bet Dex Larimore is the newest memeber of Club Trill

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

bdegroff's picture

I do not typically kill a coach for a loss. However, today is an exception. Tressel got out coached. His offensive game calling was pathetic. Why do you stop running the ball with Boom when it has been relatively successful. Boom was averaging close to 5 + yards a carry. After the interception by Sweat, he calls a reverse? Really? What the hell is that? Why not get back to the basics and keep running the ball. And what was going on down in the redzone. Two QB keepers. There was no imagination. Wisconsin saw it coming and teed off. Horrible offensive game calling equals 18 points and a loss.

Now, that special teams has finally cost us a game. It needs to be addressed. The opening kick off return sucked the air out of us and gave it to the fans. The coaching staff needs to get this fixed or it will cost us again. Also, why cant we find a kicker who can kick out of the endzone?

Finally, where was the defense. During the third quarter they did fine. However, Wiscy only had the ball once. They were on the bench the entire third quarter. After TP marched the O down the field and even got the two point conversion, the D should have been ready to step up. The D was killed by the flanker pass 5 times. Each time they ran the quick pass to the flanker they got 10 + yards. Thats coaching not making adjustments. I understand wearing down against a 320 pound line. However, when does heart come into it. The O got us back in the game and the D layed an egg. It was sad.

In the end. We were not ready. Mentally, we were beat after the kick off return. We got back into the game. Then give up another 10 unanswered. This team is no where near where I thought it would be. Or where it should be. I do not beleive we could beat Michigan State this year. The Iowa game gets more interesting. BCS bowl will be very hard to get this year.

Buckeye in Athens's picture

I'm not so sure about the play calling - it seems that when Tress just hands the ball off in big games, he is criticized for being too conservative; when he takes risks like the reverse, he is crticized for not just handing the ball off.


My point is just that we got what we had all asked for on Saturday, yet because we lost, Tress has to take the heat. Didn't just about everyone want to see the pistol? Well we got lots of it. Didn't we want to see an improvement in the running game/Saine to stop getting caries? Check and check. Were we complaining about the passing game during the Rose Bowl? No, because it happened to work. And how about the wildcat - using both Boom and Hall in particular, is quite an interesting offensive wrinkle with the potential to be really effective in games to come. 


What we saw on Saturday was an opposing defense finally realizing that stacking the box to stop the run isn't the way to beat this offense. We all just assumed that defensive coordinators would never wise up to the fact that Pryor has improved in the passing game and continue to scheme against the run. Well, Wisconsin realized this and adjusted. 


It comes down to the fact that Tress is not as stubbornly conservative as people think: Tress introduced new wrinkles to mostly positive results. Had we come out on top, we'd be lauding his ability to make adjustments and introduce innovative schemes. 

RBuck's picture


Long live the southend.

tomcollins's picture

Tress changing things up against better opponents is a good thing and far from any problems I have with him.

He's done that since 2002 when he had Krenzel running a ton to surprise Miami.  I absolutely love how he gets this image as a super conservative guy then can pull that kind of stuff off. He is football's Dan Harrington.

There are times when it gets to be too fancy (goal line stance is one of those).  When we can just overpower a team (or overrun them like Pryor can), we need to do that.  Fancy Play syndrome is not a good thing.  But even so, it's not the worst thing.

Tressel is an amazing face for the program.  He's a great CEO.  He's also a great recruiter and brings in the kinds of guys you can be proud of along with having tons of talent.  I wouldn't trade him for just about anyone, even with anything negative I would say about him.

But there still are fundamental problems that any 12 year old playing Madden would recognize.  When you are down 21, you need to get in the end zone and make sure you aren't settling for 3.  Especially when your defense is not playing well and the team you are playing can chew clock like Joey Chestnut chews hot dogs.  You have the ball on the 3 and 4 chances.  Get in the end zone.  You have Pryor.  This should be a TD 80% of the time or more.  4 sneaks could do it.  Pryor rolling out with a bootleg option works.  And we fail the first three times, we HAVE to go for it on 4th.

When we have a weak kicker, we can't be kicking 45 yard field goals.  We need to get ourselves into a position to go for it on 4th down.  We cannot be playing to not lose against better opponents (against a lesser team when we have the lead, Tressel's over-conservative nature with regards to going for it, etc... is absolutely a great plan, which is why he so rarely loses to inferior teams).

When we are down by 10 with 6 minutes left, punting is inexcusable.  Especially with our crappy special teams units this year.  Take a chance, if we don't make it, at least we tried. 

And the lack of timeout in the 2nd quarter so we could take it to halftime only down 18 made me ill.  Again, we need some swagger and confidence, even if we got kicked in the teeth.  Give ourselves a shot to narrow things down a little bit.

That is the kind of stuff that bothers me more than anything about anything Tressel does.  And as I said earlier, there isn't a coach I would trade for him even with this due to all the positive things he brings to the table.  I just wish he would learn and adjust a little from it.  Playing not to lose does not work against good teams.  This is why we lost to USC last year as well. 

And the other most important thing is the lines.  They have been pushed around for the last 5 years against anyone who is decent, with little signs of improving.  Is this all Bollman and Heacock's fault?  I'm not inside the program and can't see it, but you cannot expect to win regularly against strong opponents without winning the trenches.  Pryor will be better for it, RBs would look better with better lines, and the defense would get stops easier if they could get sacks or not pushed off the LOS.

Tressel usually brings a helluva gameplan to the table, but don't mistake that with being conservative.  They are two different things.  Tressel does one of those incredibly right and one incredibly wrong.

Chris Lauderback's picture

One thing I keep forgetting to put into a Five Things is why, knowing full well Basil ain't reaching the endzone unless it's a line drive, don't we kick to a corner instead of directly down the pipe?

I'm no ST coach but wouldn't it be easier to cover a kick if it's angled to a particular sideline instead of right down the middle of the field? I have no stats to back it but it seems logical that having a sideline act alomost as an extra defender might be a good idea with this group. And I still say Aaron Gant is the worst special teams player to ever draw a breath.  

iball's picture

I dont think Basil has any control of his kicks what so ever. At this point maybe barclay is the best Kickoff option. Just chip it to the twenty and draw the fair catch. That return Saturday night took us right out of it.

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

doodah_man's picture

Ok...looking for the pony in the pile of manure that was Saturday night, how bout this: TP's Heisman and BCS dreams are fading. He has to look at what happened to Troy Smith and say to himself, "I want to play on Sunday, I want a high draft pick, I would be happy to accept a Heisman, maybe another year would be helpful for all that". Beats the three and gone prospects for tOSU....just sayin

Jim "DooDah" Day

"If I were giving a young man advice as to how he might succeed in life, I would say to him, pick out a good father and mother, and begin life in Ohio.” --Wilbur Wright, 1910

iball's picture

if he did leave, it wouldn't be to play QB.

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

CDbucks's picture

What happened to troy smith? Exposed as a fraud in the NCG by a real, fast defense loaded with NFL players, 6th round pick, career backup at best. Hasn't sniffed the starting job on some pretty QB challenged teams. 

If TP stays another year it'll just be more of the same. Granted, that's much better than if he leaves, because the team is cratering without him, but he's got a long way to go to make it as an NFL qb either way. 

BuckeyeChief's picture

Respectfully disagree. The Decable in the Desert killed him, and then scouts started killing his height. He WAS named the starter in Baltimore 2 years ago before he developed tonilitis and being hospitalized for a few weeks. By that time, Flacco started blowing up and they couldn't justify benching him.

You can't pass the ball if the line doesn't block.

"2014 National with it!!!"

CDbucks's picture

I'd like to think those things as well since we all loved him in college, but in a world where NFL teams are trotting out every single live body out there as "QB" (b/c hey, how many drew brees and peyton mannings are there in the world?) there's no conceivable way that a guy who can play won't get a shot. no possible way. The NFL is a ruthless business and its most efficient at finding guys who can succeed at doing what they do. Flacco looks great now but his rookie year he was pretty "game manager scared of throwing more than 15 passes". And his playoff failings are the main reasons the ravens havent had more success (with their great D + ray rice). If smith had anything in him he would've gotten a real shot by now. The browns apparently thought Jake "Human INT" Delhomme was a better bet than Troy. Guys like Matt Moore, Jimmy Clausen, Colt McCoy, Max hall, trent edward, ryan fitzpatrick, bruce gradkowski have all been handed NFL starting gigs sometime in the last year. If Smith couldn't get one, what does that really say about his abilities?

RBuck's picture

Don't know if McCoy is the answer for Cleveland or not. But he did look pretty good in his first true outing as a pro.

Long live the southend.

GrayDay's picture

Can't remember seeing an opponent's offense execute so well as a team on nearly every play (maybe since USC in 08 or Florida).  Dissapointing our line got pushed around so much, but timely, quick, on-the-money passes were crucial keeping that going.  Give Wisky credit for making the plays.

I thought Pryor played well - very well actually - but he's not going to rally a sinking ship with his arm.  His passing has improved greatly, but its not natural for him (yet).  Being such a talent we almost expect him to pull us out of deep holes, but he still tends to lose focus and execute poorly when a lost cause is dumped on his shoulders.  I wanted to go for it on 4th down, but I think Tress knew (as did we) the game was over unless Pryor somehow ran for it.  He figured Wisky knew it too and prefered delaying defeat with hopes his defense could rise to the challenge.  It didn't and so even if we'd scored we lose.

BuckeyeChief's picture

Really amazed "the Human INT" got signed by Cleveland.

"2014 National with it!!!"

BuckeyeChief's picture

Maybe this year is 2005 all over again?!

"2014 National with it!!!"

RedQueenRace's picture

Well, I've done some reading elsewhere.  Came across this commentary by a Badger fan, which I found interesting:

"An excellent win for the Badgers, but I can't be the only one that watched that game and saw how bad the Badgers defense really is. Prior and the OSU backs could have run forever if they really wanted to. If Prior was even an average throwing quaterback he would have thrown all over this secondary. There were receivers running open all over and he continually threw behind them, over them and into the ground. Plus the fact that they don't trust him enough to throw once they are inside the 10 yard line. Watt is obviously a bright spot on the defensive side, but I don't come away from this game thinking that we're on the path to a BCS bowl game. Honestly I don't think Beilma can lead us to better than a 3-4 loss season."

Make of it what you will.