Eleven Warriors Roundtable

By Johnny Ginter on August 26, 2011 at 1:00p
2011W Ohio State Football Preview

As a grand finale for Season Preview Week here at Eleven Warriors, I racked my brains and after many moons of careful deliberation, I finally decided that the best way to close it out would be to pass the mic and let each 11W MC strut their stuff for a bit. Today your favorite writers will offer up a truly funky fresh breakdown of how the season plays out, based upon the illest questions that I could come up with.

And, I've gotta say, the 11Dub crew truly went all out in their responses. It's unfortunate that I couldn't include all of them as that would end up being a multiple part post stretching through the Nebraska game, but rest assured that I included all of the responses that made me laugh the most and/or represented the best potential for future mockery and derision. Also to those of you pointing out that I'm not the one who had to go out on a limb and prognosticate months into the future so who am I to talk: you're right. I am a tremendous, tremendous wuss.

So without further ado, I present the 2011 Eleven Warriors Roundtable!


What are your expectations for THE BUCKEYES going into the 2011 season?

Jason: The talent is still largely there. It will be interesting to see how the team fares in the first five games without Posey, Herron and Adams and of course we'll soon find out whether Fickell shares Tressel's same constrictor approach to suffocating opponents while holding the lead. I don't expect the team to go unbeaten, but I wouldn't be shocked to see them playing in a January bowl game.

Alex: Honestly I'm not sure what to expect. I think the defense will be really good, but to be quite honest I'm very concerned about the offense. I think you could see anything from a complete mess of a team that goes 6-6/7-5 to a team carried early by the defense that develops a highly effective offense and wins the Big Ten. I'm not sure if I'm excited or nervous, but either way this will be the most entertaining season in a long time.

Ramzy: A funny thing happens when new coaches take over stocked teams.  Look at what Bob Stoops, Urban Meyer and Tressel did with players recruited by John Blake, Ron Zook and John Cooper.  Change is often good, even when no change was needed.

Which Simpsons quote/rap lyric best describes the 2011 Ohio State Buckeyes?

Jeremy: "I'm not normally a praying man, but if you're up there, please save me Superman"

DJ: Still rock my khakis with a cuff and a crease/ Still got love for the streets, repping 213/ Still the beat bangs, still doing my thang/ Since I left, ain't too much changed

What record does OSU need to post in 2011 for Luke Fickell to keep his job?

Chris: That's a tough question. With recruiting for next year at stake, it seems possible he might get offered a contract before the season is over. If they do wait until the end, I think a 9-3 season would lock up a contract though I think the manner in which they compete, handle adversity etc, not just wins/losses, will be factored in.

Ramzy: Ten for a guarantee.  Nine and strong recruiting/program climate karma and he's got a good shot.  Eight and he needs some help.  Seven and he can take over at Akron.  Six and we'll require restraints, lithium and electro-shock therapy.

Joe: I think he'll need 10 or 11 wins including a win over UM and not getting blown out in the bowl at the very least.

Give me an argument for Braxton Miller being the starting quarterback from day one.

Sarah: Remember Todd Boeckman vs. USC? Now picture an older, beardier, gingery version of that. Ohio State will probably need a QB who can buy time with his feet and elude tacklers and even if Miller struggles some, and he will have his ups and downs, that experience is the best learning tool for this season and for future seasons.

DJ: Because this is how it works when you play EA Sports' NCAA Football franchise. You take the young, underdeveloped quarterback, play him, and by the time he's a senior, he's got a 98 rating and going for his third Heisman. Of course, this isn't how it works, but I'd still wish we'd play Braxton and just live with whatever mistakes he makes. Ol' Dude Bauserman has never instilled confidence in me, and he's just as prone to terrible throws as Braxton might be.

What game on the schedule are you the most excited for?

Luke: Akron. This is Neo walking into the metal detector. Show me your weapons or show me that this season is the other 2 Matrix films.

Alex: I think like most, the Wisconsin game at night for a chance to avenge last season's lost and the Eat Too Brutus event will be sweet, but nothing, and I mean nothing, gets me more excited than OSU vs Michigan.

The 2010 Buckeyes put up 38.8 points per game, good for 11th in the country. In terms of points per game, what's a reasonable expectation for the 2011 Buckeyes?

DJ: Dear God, the 2010 Bucks scored 38.8 per game? This didn't make sense to me, until I realized, elite college football teams only play 3-4 competitive games a year. They say 17 points is all you need to win most football games. We'll probably control the clock through the running game and let our defense wear people down. Due to the likes of Akron, Colorado, etc. on the schedule, I'll say we end up with about 28.8 points a game.

Jeremy: I think it's reasonable to expect between 24 - 27 points a game this year.  Defense should still help put the team in good spots, and the return game should be as good or better than last year.

Luke: Without any viable targets in the passing game and extreme uncertainty under center, the odds of this team scoring 38 (much less something far closer to palpable like 30-33) a game is going to take some serious MACrificial lamb-ing for those kind of numbers to become even a twinkle in Dr. Luke Fickell, PhD's eye.

11W company meeting

Which players on the offense and defense need to have great seasons for the team to be successful?

Corey: On offense, Joe Bauserman. It's not the popular choice athletically, but the dude is 26 and should be able to manage the game better than Braxton. If he can some how manage a year that was statistically similar to Krenzel's in 2002, this team will also have a chance in every game.

Chris: Defense: Andrew Sweat. This team needs a playmaker at linebacker and Sweat looks primed to fill that role with the switch from Sam to Will. From what we've seen, Sweat is going to straight blow up this year. Along with Simon, Sweat also shows outstanding leadership qualities that can't be underestimated during the course of a tight game.

DJ: Nathan Williams on defense. He's been a pass-rushing monster, but we need him to have a more complete role this year without giving up pass-rushing ability. I don't envision too many teams running on us, and if we can get a consist pass rush--look out. On the offensive side of the ball, I think it's obvious: whatever carbon-based life-form is in the quarterback slot.

Is this the year Michigan finally breaks mummy's curse and defeats Ohio State, or is Brady Hoke the George McClellan of college football coaches?

Danny: Not buying into Michigan yet. They lost one of their best receivers in Darryl Stonum, and their defense is still suspect. This is year one for Brady Hoke, he should be focusing on getting his feet wet and learning the lay of the land, not cannon balling right in. Wow, that would make a huge splash.

Sarah: The most annoying person I know is like the human equivalent of the song "Who Let the Dogs Out". He's a guaranteed migraine. Every time I have to see him, I want to strangle him with my bare hands, and if I did, I would probably be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. If Brady Hoke leads Michigan to a win against Ohio State, he would be even more insufferable than that. I can't let myself picture it happening, because it would lead me down a rabbit hole of apoplexy that would end in a rage blackout and a warrant out for my arrest in 37 states.

Chris: Ohio State will not lose to Michigan this year. Good for them for going out and hiring their Michigan Man. He clearly gets the rivalry and is the typical arrogant Michigan man that's easy to hate but the fact of the matter is that talent wins football games and right now, there is still a pretty wide gap in talent when you compare the two rosters. I'll begrudgingly say they are on the right track but a polished turd is still a turd as far as Michigan's 2011 roster goes.

Give me a best case/worst case scenario for Ohio State football this year.

Luke: Assuming all the stars align? A convincing enough 9-3 (maybe even 10-3 if you count the bowl game) to put us in terrifying Bill Stewart/Larry Coker land. If my trepidations aren't the same old xanax fuel, 6-6 is a LOST pilot-esque ultimately poorly rationaled plane crash apocalypse.

Jeremy: Best case? 12-2, BCS bowl game. Worst case? 7-5; Bauserman can't hack it and Braxton gets his confidence shaken to the point of no return.

Jason: Best case: 11-1 and a BCS bowl. Worst case: 7-5, losing some games that Tressel would not have lost.

Alex: I think worst case you're looking at a 6-6/7-5 season with losses to Miami, MSU, NU, Wiscy, UM, and maybe one game we shouldn't lose. At best, you're probably looking at 11-1 in the regular season with the chance to play for the B1G championship and a BCS Bowl.

DJ:  Best case scenario is shocking the world and somehow winning the national title. The worstt case scenario is, much like USC last year, we take our first L and then the wheels come off. I think our kids have a little more steel in their backbone than the likes of Matt Barkley, though.

Chris: Best case: 11-1 regular season, win the conference championship game, earn a BCS bowl bid. Worst case: The QB position refuses to shake out favorably, the defense is always on the field and we go 8-4 in an ugly enough fashion that compromises the continuity of the entire coaching staff.

Ramzy: Runs the table, wins the national championship.  Or walks off the field in Ann Arbor destined for the Who Cares bowl while a dozen Michigan players shatter their vertebrae trying to hoist Floppy McJowels on their shoulders. The delta, she is wide.

Danny: Win the Big Ten, Braxton steps up as the wave of the future. Worst case, OSU barely qualifies for a bowl game and Miller struggles.

Sarah: Best: 2002. Worst: 2001, without a win against Michigan.

Corey: Best case, everything clicks. As I expect every year, a Big Ten and National Championship. Worst case, injuries and poor QB play lead to a 9-4 record.

Joe: Best: Win the B1G and go to the Rose Bowl. Worst: 2004. Ugh.

And that's that! Thanks again for all of your input guys. If I didn't include your favorite response, just remember; it's not because it was terrible. It was because I don't like you!


Comments Show All Comments

Philly White's picture

"And then I said to the President..."

Nappy's picture

+1 for the Dr. Dre lyric

I never saw a football player make a tackle with a smile on his face

JoshAlum's picture

Chris has the most realistic scenario.

Best case, we win the games we're favored in, meaning 11-1, and we split the Nebraska-Wisconsin games. Wisconsin I think is going to be a win, after a year of watching the film of the 1st and 4th quarters of that game, the defense will be fired up.

I have to say that makes our must-win game Sparty, it's the critical turning point. We beat Sparty, 11-1 is definitely in reach. We lose that, I say we lose to Nebraska and Wisconsin as well. 9-3 isn't bad, assuming we get a bowl game win, and that saves Fickell's job. Now - all this assumes we beat a Miami team, that may or may not be intact at that point.


BuckeyeSki's picture

Banned from BlackShoeDiaries since 2008. Crime: Slander/Defamation of Character Judgement: Guilty

Is it Saturday Yet's picture

I keep seeing that they are seeking reinstatement for their players, but haven't heard any of the details???

Bucks's picture

Just boils down to Miami knowing internally that the players in question have violated rules & trying to get it out of the way at the start. Can't fault them for doing it proactively but it is hardly done b/c they want to. It is a blatant admission of evidence to prove the allegations. Minor excercise in forcing the NCAA to make a determination on them early & the return decision will be fairly telling on how things really look.

BucksfanXC's picture

The NCAA has been investigating for 5 months. Funny how these suspensions always happen just a few days after the expose article comes out. My thoughts are too, weren't they all ineligible last year then too? If last year's game gets vacated by both teams, what the hell happens? Stats books explode?

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

Bucks's picture

I'm not even going to attempt to come to any opinion on that. With the depth & length of alleged violations ... I just wouldn't know where to begin.

The length of suspensions, to me, will be a huge indication though.

Is it Saturday Yet's picture

Whenever I read anything from Luke I picture this guy:

no offense meant

Luke's picture

He dresses pretty fresh. I've got better hair though.

Denny's picture

It is true Luke has beautiful locks of hair.


flipbuckeye's picture

When I scroll really fast, the "FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT" picture reminds me of a cookie cake.

I'm on 2 hours of sleep in the last 48 hours.

Jimmy's picture

I am wide awake and I can totally see the cookie cake. I am now getting a cookie cake for The Game.

BacknBlack's picture

9-3 or 8-4 is realistic. I do not like the Illini game on the road after the Huskers and before Whisky. Beat Go Blow and Coach Luke gets a contract for shutting up Fatty McButterpants.

Bucks's picture

Since we have our very own Buckeye Lore player in the midst, I'd love to know the opinion of Matt on the QB question. I would say he is uniquely qualified based off some of the QB scenario he witnessed himself. - The team (Offense) goes after it every play regardless of the man under center or the team has the one they believe in and actually play to a higher level b/c of it? Regardless of the answer to that, have any 11W staff formed an opinion on who the players themselves believe in most?

For me right now, I'm not even going to let myself think about 5,7,10 games down the line. I just want to see the first few games & no apparent issues with game management from Fickell. Don't want to see issues with plays called in & confusion. If that seems to be a non-issue, off to the races we go.


The best case for me is beating the snot out of both Wisky & Hokey Pokey, being competitive in the first year of divisions & the final word from the NCAA being "we accept your penalties as sufficient." The worst? Yikes, don't even want to type it so I won't.



Buckeye06's picture

No matter what I say that the best OSU does is in the NC.  Overall, OSU will have more talent on the field than any team they play in the regular season and CCG.  Worst case I'd say 8-4 honestly, with losses at Neb, home to wisky, away at miami...and dare i say it?

buckeyedude's picture

Don't say it dude. Bad karma.



WilloughbyBuck's picture

"The delta, she is wide."  That's what makes this season so much fun as we count down to Akron - the possibilities are endless.  And it would make a major success so much more enjoyable.


I think if I am going to say "best case scenario" I have to say undefeated. I honestly can not say at this point that I KNOW there is a team on our schedule that we absolutely can not beat. With that said, I think we have a chance to win every game, so in a best case scenario we will win every game that we at least have a chance to win.

Is this likely....no. Do I think it will happen....probably not. Is it possible....yes.

(Of course after I see how our offense plays in the first few games, I could very well change my opinion.)

Ultrabuckeyehomer's picture

I think, apparently like most people, that we can win the conference this year in the best case scenario.  No matter what anyone says about the changes and "distractions," no team is going to have more talent than we do (some may be close or even, but no team will have more overall talent). 

However, there is no way this team can win the national championship.  We simply will not be good enough at QB to do so.  I am very worried about this team being able to put up points against NE, Wisky, MSU, etc.  If we win those games, it will certainly be due to the defense keeping it very low scoring. I know people are excited about Miller, and rightly so, but he is only a freshman and let's be honest, the reports out of camp have not been "Wow, he is just kicking ass."  (of course, they also have not been "he looks terrible"). That is not a knock on him, it's just reality that he is a freshman and will struggle against good teams.  Think about TP's freshman year, think about the first year of Smith starting (and he went on to win the Heisman) ... they were not national championship calibre QBs.  But, we saw what they developed into and that is what to be excited about.  

Worst case scenario is we drop 4 games, no more.  I honestly can't see this team going 6-6 or 7-5.  I don't believe that so-called "distractions" play any role on Saturdays.  I've never bought into that.  Guys do not stand around in the huddle and discuss what writers are saying or wondering what JT and TP are doing at that moment.  They may get pelted with annoying questions every other day of the week, but it will have zero effect on their performance.


Nick's picture

Ken Dorsey, Craig Krenzel, Chris Leak etcetcetc


you don't have to have a great QB to win a NC. However you do need good to great in the other categories.

BucksfanXC's picture

None of those guys won NCs as freshmen, Joe B is also none of those guys. But, we'll see.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

kc286496's picture

I'm 5'9", 165 and this team could go 6-6 with ME playing left guard.  Folks, I realize the QB position is a bit of an unknown.  But let's not pretend the cupboard is bare.  This team will win 6 just by showing up on Saturdays.  Worst case, this is a four loss team.  Best case, this is a one loss team.