Five Things: Spring Game

By Chris Lauderback on April 22, 2012 at 6:00a
72 Comments
Braxton: guaranteed satisfaction

With many getting their first glimpse of the new and improved Ohio State offense, Urban Meyer's troops did not disappoint as the Scarlet team rode the arm of Braxton Miller and the hands of true frosh Michael Thomas on the way to a 20-14 win over the Gray squad in a cold and damp Horseshoe with about 60k of 81k paid in attendance. 

As part of Urban's culture where there is a winner and loser to everything, the Gray squad earned a date with Buckeye Grove where they will get their landscape-on while the Scarlet team basks in the glory of a six point victory. 

Despite a high volume of guys held out due to injury and others maybe not so injured (Simon) the execution, especially offensively, was better than maybe some anticipated. Sure the defense stayed pretty vanilla employing base sets but the offensive was also hampered by the fact Miller and Kenny Guiton were wearing invisible no-contact jerseys. 

All in all, I have to believe coaches, players and fans alike have to feel exceptionally good about what transpired today and what the future holds. With that, let's jump into the first Five Things of 2012...

the new culture

We've seen and heard enough during Urban's short tenure to know things are significantly different compared to the previous regime but how impressive was it to finally see so much of those difference on display yesterday? A few things in particular about UFM's leadership that blew me away included:

  • Starting the event with the old Hoot and Holler drill was a stroke of genius. Clearly, UFM is hell bent on creating constant intensity on the field and apparently, even in the stands. I guess it shouldn't have been too shocking to see this since practice often starts with the same drill but to pull that out to ignite the fans (and players) was fun to watch. And how about those matchups? Simon vs. Mewhort, Shazier owning Sabino, Stoney vs. Boren, then when you think you've had your fill coach pits Braxton against Kenny G? If Tress were running that drill, he'd wrap Braxton in bubble wrap and ship him to Dayton first (not hatin', just sayin'). Also, that drill alone showed why Coombs was an insanely awesome hire. 
  • Another move I liked occurred when UFM interrupted the action early in the 2nd quarter to stage a quick pressure FG session. The crowd really got into it and Basil, who we thought might not play, got to get some legit long FG practice in the 'Shoe. Basil made 4/7 connecting from 41, 45, 45 and 53 while getting one blocked (45) and missing two from 58 yards (H/T: Svo-bro-da). Just a subtle little snippet but I really liked how Urban orchestrated the action, even standing right behind the holder for each quick to examine the speed/location of the snaps, the placement and the protection up front. The guy thinks of everything. 
  • A small nugget but again showing what a thinker he is, I found it interesting that UFM dictated that all the QB's wear a knee brace on their lead leg since that is the one most susceptible to getting injured when stepping into a throw as defenders approach low. 
  • I also appreciated his willingness to let his star QB play in an effort to develop. Sure, the QB's were heavily protected by the pressure/sack rules but he let Miller run the show for a lot longer than maybe some other coaches would've. 

ISO: Playmakers

Meyer has said all spring that he's still in search of some playmakers. He listed Philly Brown and Jordan Hall as his players closest to earning that status but is still begging for skill players to step up as major homerun threats. 

While he wasn't really involved in any big gainers, Thomas was sensational hauling in 12 passes for 131 yards. It would've been nice to see him chew up more YAC with some broken tackles but there's no question he's got game as Meyer said he and Philly Brown are the top two receivers currently. He did have a nice run after catching a sideline route from Braxton on the 2nd Scarlet possession of the 2nd half. Seems like this kid will see plenty of action come fall. He almost had a spectacular TD catch late as he snared a Miller  throw on the right side of the endzone but came down with his right foot about 10 inches out of bounds. He also had Bradley Roby beat late and Roby was forced to take a PI to avoid a nice gain. At 6'2", 200 lbs, I got a Michael Jenkins vibe from Thomas. I'll take that. 

Philly Brown was the guy Meyer had been praising this spring though I personally am a bit reluctant to believe the hype. Playing with Guiton the Gray unit, Philly came on late and finished with seven catches for 90 yards. Similar to Thomas, I just didn't see the shake I typically think a true game breaking receiver should have especially for his size. I don't mean to imply he doesn't add value, I'm just not sure he'll emerge as a game breaking player this fall. 

One of the few disappoints related to the spring game came, for me, when the draft was held because I really wanted to see Devin Smith on the same team as Miller. Smith didn't make a lot of noise today with Guiton but he did have a nice 28 yard TD catch on a crossing route cutting the Scarlet lead to 10-7. I expect this kid to be one of the top three in receiving yards by the time the horn sounds on the 2012 campaign but the WR corps seems so wide open it's hard to gauge what will happen. 

Chris Fields had some grabs and Evan Spencer didn't play due to injury and he's another guy that Meyer has spoken highly of at times. 

All in all, Thomas was the kid who made the strongest impression today but this unit must continue to evolve and is need of some guys creating more separation from the rest of the pack so Miller can work on timing and cohesion to build a trust he could never find last year with so few opportunities. 

braxton continues to grow

Miller is going to be a beast in this offense. 

Finally taking advantage of his strengths, the hybrid offense of UFM and Herman employed an uptempo pace, roving pockets and a short passing game to put Braxton in position to succeed - and that was without the kid being able to use his legs to make defenders look drunj in space. 

Going exclusively no-huddle, Miller was on fire early connecting on seven of his first eight attempts including two decent gainers to Fields. While I'll never profess to being a QB coach (though my credentials might rival Siciliano's) I tried to focus on Miller's lower half and it appeared that he was a little more stable at his base and subsequently more proficient at stepping into his throws. 

He did have a couple poor throws including one to Fields on 3rd and 24 setting up a FG and a 10-0 lead, a high throw on the run over the head of Vannett for an INT and his worst attempt of the day occurred when he tried to force a ball through double coverage near the goal line when he was already late in deciding on that particular receiver. 

Still, there's so much to be excited about as Miller finally looked comfortable running an offense suited to his emerging skill set. He finished 24/31 for 258 yards and one INT. He was also victimized by three drops. 

How dangerous is this kid going to be when he can actually use his legs in addition to his arm? I think all Buckeye fans are foaming at the mouth pondering that question. 

philosophical viagra

I've already touched on a few items UFM has installed that has the players and fanbase feeling frisky but the number one win in nabbing Meyer is the installation of an offense that wants to put pressure on the defense. 

The no-huddle was so quick that it cut down OSU fan/writer tweets by roughly 40% (not verified). Seriously, the offensive tempo was so electric that the two offenses combined to run 27 plays in the 600 seconds of 1st quarter action. Or basically, one play every 22 seconds. 

Schematically, Ross has been training our brains for weeks on what to expect but to physically see all those five wide sets, unique formations and shot gun looks (which we admittedly saw a bunch last year) was fun. Above those developments, what really caught my eye was all the short crossing routes to both receivers and tight ends. Those are the types of plays that create mismatches and get burners in space not to mention keep a defense honest in the middle of the field, hopefully freeing up the deep ball after enough success underneath. 

Vannett, despite some early drops, had a field day in the middle of the defense while Thomas and Fields also found room between the line and linebackers. Miller looked very confident with those throws and didn't telegraph them as to keep the DL from batting down balls. 

Again, I can't wait to see how those plays are enhanced when the attack can also add the wrinkle of Miller's legs. 

don't forget about the bullets

Today was really about continuing the development of what was an abysmal offense a season ago but even while featuring mostly basic sets and playing without Simon, Hankins, C. Grant and Barnett, among others, the Bullets still had their moments. 

Specifically, Ryan Damn Shazier (7 tkls) is on his way to being the breakout player in the conference. He was all over the field and brought wood on more than a few occassions, most notably when he lit up Bri'onte Dunn on 4th and 1 to halt the Gray's first possession of the 2nd half. Two plays earlier, he had pasted Dunn (I think?) in the hole to wow the crowd. 

Adam Bellamy was a factor early on with a sack, a near sack before Miller juked him hard, and a blocked FG during the Basil marathon. I've always liked the kid's motor and he's one of many guys Fickell can rotate up front to wear down opposing offensive lines. 

Roby got beat by Thomas once leading to a PI but he also brought lumber on a few occassions showing again he's the best all-around corner on the team. 

Bottom line, the Bullets may not have grabbed the headlines today but UFM has plenty of confidence this unit will, come fall, be playing at a level miles above what fans were forced to watch a season ago. That's good enough for me. 

72 Comments

Comments

pompano buckeye's picture

Any thoughts on the punting?  I was not too impressed (disappointed, actually) with what I saw.  I assumed that spring practice would have placed emphasis on hang time, distance, and placement.  I saw nothing to be excited about.  Where do we stand this year?  All in all, though, very excited and am now dreading the drought that is summer with no football!

“...indomitable in victory, insufferable in defeat.” Woody Hayes

tampa buckeye's picture

the plan is to not PUNT.  the good ole' boys are gone.

buckeye76BHop's picture

Agreed...Urban likes practicing with the punters...doesn't mean he likes doing it.  Ben will be fine...he shanked a few but it was a bit wet in there as I can say first hand.  He's a senior and if the offense does their job we won't have to worry about punting.  

"There's nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you."
"I love football. I think it is most wonderful game in world and I despise to lose."
Woody Hayes 1913 - 1987 

BritishBuckeye's picture

nice piece Chris. Shazier is a monster. I think Curtis Grant will be awesome too.

wigbug5's picture

Shazier=BadMuthaFucka1

Roby=BadMuthaFucka2

 
 

BuiltfortheNuthouse's picture

I know pompano did you see that 20 yd shank

" I went for two cause I couldn't go for three." 
-woody Hayes 

nickma71's picture

So 30,000 more people went to see Pryor because the weather was good. I will be watching it on the DVR next week.

Poison nuts's picture

30,000? Maybe more like 14,000. Not trying to nit pick but we had 81,000 out there yesterday.

"Death created time to grow the things that it would kill" - Detective Rustin Cohle.

avail31678's picture

Actually, it was reported that only about 60,000 were in attendance with 81,000 tickets bought.

Poison nuts's picture

My bad - BTN said 81000 so thats what I thought. Looked like more than 60000 on TV but I wasnt there...

"Death created time to grow the things that it would kill" - Detective Rustin Cohle.

pcon258's picture

wait, i was at the game, and the attendance they annonced was 81k. I think there were 60k in attendance with paid tickets, with the rest being unpaid tickets (i.e. students)

buckeyedude's picture

Was there. Looked like 81K to me.

Weren't 60,000 tix already sold before the game, or was that 40K I heard?

 
 

Shaun OSU's picture

I believe you are mixed up. The reports said that 81,000 were in attendance, with 60,000 of them paying for tickets. Anyone who has a Buck-id got into the game for free. That is where the difference between paid ticket sales and actual attendance comes from. I was at the game and they definitely announced 81,000.

Colin's picture

I feel like this is sarcastic and a lot of people aren't picking up on it.

Poison nuts's picture

Cuz we're dummys... Actually I did get what the original comment was saying. but I guess for some strange reason, the attendance # means something to me. Some sort of weird bragging rights thing. Its actually really silly & at the same time it still matters to me.

"Death created time to grow the things that it would kill" - Detective Rustin Cohle.

buckeyefanatic's picture

You could be right, the statement makes so little sense that it must be sarcastic?  Or am I being sarcastic?

How many batteries does it take to beat Michigan football?   1AA
Want to beat Michigan? There's an App for that.

Colin's picture

You are making sense, by the same relation you are not being sarcastic.

SPreston2001's picture

Well considering the weather was crappy I think 81,000 was awesome. I can definitely see 14,000 people staying home because of the weather....

buckeyemondo's picture

there were still times when braxton was on the move in the pocket where footwork took a back seat to just trying to make a play.   also, on some of the short crossing routes, needed to deliver a more catchable ball -- those turn into INT's when thrown too hard and the receiver bounces it off his chest/helmet (although to the receivers' credit, few were dropped).

agreed that the punting was underwhelming, but without the threat of a return (?), not sure BB was dialed in.

the tempo of the new offense was evident on the first drive when TBDBITL barely had time to go thru their normal post big-play fight song of choice.

Alhan's picture

It wasn't TBDBITL...there were flutes and saxes in the group on Saturday.

You can kill a fly with your slipper or a cannon. Either way, the fly dies. -Ramzy

RBuck's picture

I think someone called it the "Athletic Band", whatever that is.

"It's just another case of there you are". ~ Doc (1918-2012)

Abe Froman's picture

Miller was definitely improved in passing and much more comfortable than last year. This of course is what you want to see, improvement. The hard part of these games is determining the pass rush when they are not supposed to hit the qb. This of course allows the qb to be more comfortable in the pocket. The targets were mostly hit and more than a few times Miller chose the throw over run, when he clearly had room in front of him. Once again, this is what we want to see. The really nice thing was that Thomas was definitely the main target and looks to be (based on the spring game) a possession receiver that we didn't have last year.

Basking in the wake of mediocrity.....

VestedInterest's picture

Thomas though by most accounts, isn't the most polished in practice but seems to find a way to get open and make the catch. That's all that matters and he impressed me the most yesterday.

BrewstersMillions's picture

I LOVED The sprint out pass they were calling. Miller was rolling to his left while a trio of receivers ran a flood that sprung an open WR each and every time. Its an excellent zone beater and one that will create lanes for Miller to take off in if the coverage is up to snuff.

This team will be good come Fall. Come 2013, the rest of the B1G might want to take cover. Urban's coming.....

4-6 seconds from point A to point B and when you get to point B, be pissed off

buckeye76BHop's picture

Good article Chris...Besides the shank-oponomous punt and some pass protection problems...it was pretty successful spring game I thought.  A few dropped passes and a few over throws but not too bad...this team will be fine after fall camp.  The class of 2012 coming in June and Nate W. will be back and others will be healthy too.  I'm really excited to see the defense after fall camp;-)  The rotation on the d-line and LB could be down right sick (not to mention a couple of frosh DB's may get playing time too).  I see a good season on the horizon and an even better one next year.  

"There's nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you."
"I love football. I think it is most wonderful game in world and I despise to lose."
Woody Hayes 1913 - 1987 

jack's picture

thanks for keeping this blog and analysis of our team the most awesome thing I've found since leaving Ohio.  I only get to travel back once a year, perhaps twice, so this is just like a home away from home for me.

 

Go Bucks!!!

 

O - H !

buckeyefanatic's picture

I - O !!

(from Dallas, TX)

How many batteries does it take to beat Michigan football?   1AA
Want to beat Michigan? There's an App for that.

Squirrel Master's picture

The most impressive player on the field (Simon wasn't on the field much) was Thomas. Not sure if Braxton was deliberately looking for him since most of the offensive weapons were on Gray team, but they had a connection that I don't think will be spring game only. TW a couple years ago had a 2 touchdown SG, Guiton is a SG warrior, but to get 12 catches for 130 yards is not a flash in the pan. He was getting great separation from Roby (no slouch himself) and really worked towards the ball and battled each time. He just had a way to get his hands on the ball, and what great hands he has. I wonder how big his hands are because he was catching everything thrown at him, that was reachable.

I thought it was interesting that Urban wasn't coaching one of the teams like Tressel did. I saw why! He didn't want to coach a team but let his asst. take the reins! He was in control of the whole action. It was awesome to see him out there on the field the whole time. He talked to players, he talked to both teams, got into huddles. I loved it! Not saying he is better than Tressel, but couldn't have found a better replacement!

FYI, it was pretty cold! Urban (and my nephew who was freezing his ass off) were the only ones with shorts on. Dude is a stud!

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

Poison nuts's picture

Nice assesment of the game. I agree about wanting to see more yards after the catch but I did see at least one Micheal Thomas catch where he made a great spin move and gained about 20 yards while dragging a few guys at the end. That guy will be an animal and he will be playing as a freshman. Watching the spring game was amazing & now I will be going into major football withdrawals...

"Death created time to grow the things that it would kill" - Detective Rustin Cohle.

JasonBuck's picture

I-O! And 61k...I'm not "nit picking either" but that seems very low. I wouldn't say 81k was there but I'd easily say 70-75k at least were there. I've been to the last 3 spring games and the last two were terribly low in attendance regardless of the number it was good to see buckeye nation out in full force on a miserable day. C deck three rows up on the 50 yard line was sooooo cold!

Squirrel Master's picture

Maybe only that many were in the shoe but I guarantee at least another 30-40k were out on the streets. My one friend I don't think made it in because she didn't want to get soaking wet. On a clear day, I am certain it would have been a record! People were there, just kind of sucked being in the rain and then the cold.

We got there around 10:30 and sat through the LAX game (which was awesome) and the whole SG. Got home around 10:30 last night!

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

RedStorm45's picture

Shazier lit up Taylor Rice I believe.

Loved what we saw out of Dunn.  Kid could be a big timer in a couple years.  I actually like him over Rod Smith, though Meyer had him listed as the 4th back.  It will be interesting to see what UFM and Herman do with the big bodies of Hyde, Smith, and Dunn.  I know Hyde has damn near 4.4 speed, not sure of the other 2.  Still, those guys are more built for running in inbetween the tackles, so we'll see how much of that is incorporated.

rider1's picture

There was even a rare pulling guard siting on the Carlos Hyde TD run. Something for everyone!

tjshaffe's picture

Lots of promise shown in the SG.  Shazier is going to be exciting to watch, Braxton has shown improvement.  (which is great) I am comfortable knowing that if Braxton has to sit to catch a breather or tie his shoe, Kenny will be able to step in and preform well.  Excited for the upcoming season.  Go Bucks!

Squirrel Master's picture

dude you left off the Guiton/Miller one! That was great! nice to see it on tape.

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

osubuckeye4life's picture

Unfortunately, the video didn't have that one. I'll see if I can find it though. 

FortMeyer's picture

Jack Mewhort is a big dude. Don't know that I ever noticed before or it is Marotti magic but he looked like a monster.

wigbug5's picture

looks like Mewhort is one of the very few who can hold their own against Simon.

 
 

partisan's picture

Thomas stood out to me during the game, but my favorite part wasn't all the catches he made.  There was a play where Braxton made a good throw against his body on a roll out for about 30+ yards to Fields? But the play was called back for offensive PI on Thomas.

I wanted to see how he would react and he was clearly pissed at the call but he wasn't acting like a crybaby.  He waited for a chance to ask the ref what caused the flag and you could see him talking to the coaches about it afterwards too.  I love seeing that kind of passion.

Bucks43201's picture

I do not get the BTN in my area...was wondering, I know Cardale Jones was upset he didn't get reps....but did he get in at all? Just wasn't sure if he didn't get in at all, or only got 1 series.

Also....Rod Smith - heard he had something like 8 carries for 46 yards and a TD...I wonder if he's progressing enough that they'll keep him at RB. I still believe in this kid. Hit the hole w/out hesitation & he'll end up being solid.

Another question is DB Corey ("Pittsburgh") Brown. I know he had some injury issues...haven't heard much about him...was wondering how he looked out there?

thanks

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

RedStorm45's picture

Didn't see Cardale at all.

I was more impressed with Dunn than Smith, but it's hard to gauge because of the different O-Lines and opposing D-Lines.

Hard to say about the defenses...they played a lot of base and were pretty vanilla.

Squirrel Master's picture

not at all. Guiton and Braxton started the whole game. Not sure what to think of Jones's comment. We will see though.

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

M Man's picture

I am trying to think of another freshman running back in the Big Ten who looked as game-ready as Bri'onte Dunn.

Mike Hart was a very productive freshman and if Dunn puts up yardage numbers this year the way that the freshman Mike Hart did, I think all of you will be happy.  But Mike Hart didn't look, physically, anything like Dunn.

I am thinking that the best historical example might have been the freshman Ron Dayne.  I see even more "Darrell Thompson" in Dunn, although Dunn will never get the numbers of touches that Thompson got at Minnesota, or that Anthony Thompson (another similar-looking back) got at IU.

In the recent past, Dunn reminds me a lot of LeVeon Bell.

If memory serves me (Google might serve me a lot better) every one of those guys -- Hart, Dayne, Bell, both Thompsons -- holds his school's freshman rushing record.

(M Man wipes yet another recruiting tear from his eye.)

buckeyedude's picture

That's got to suck to see Dunn play so well, for a UM fan. I am just amazed at the depth OSU has at this position. And Ball ain't even on campus yet.

I agree Hart had a good freshman season, but he wasn't/isn't built anything like Dunn is. And I won't bring up the verbal aspect of his game. Ahem. ;)

I need to see more of Dunn before I can give my "he looks like" analysis.  

 
 

M Man's picture

Mike Hart as a freshman had 1,455 yards with nine touchdowns. 26 receptions for 237 yards and a touchdown catch.  And I'm not sure if he fumbled once that year.  He had only three fumbles in his career, and two of those were in his last bowl game as a senior.

I was earlier saying how highly I think of Dunn.  If I could guarantee that kind of a year for Dunn in 2012; I think Urban Meyer would thank me very much and say he'll take it. 

Larryp713's picture

I was very impressed with Brionte yesterday. He reminded me of Mo Clarett's first games, though I know it is very premature to make those comparisons. He and Thomas definately looked comfortable beyond their years, though. And if Dunn can match Clarett's or Mike Hart's productivity as freshmen, it will be scary.

Having said that, I don't think it is possible. Neither Hart nor Mo had to share the backfield with someone as talented as Braxton Miller. But I think he and Carlos Hyde will be the feature backs, with Jordan Hall moving all over the field, ala Percy Harvin. I don't want to get too excited, but this offense has enough weapons to be terrifying.

Respectfully,

Larryp713

Arizona_Buckeye's picture

I'm guessing some of the Big Ten coaches went for the Rolaids after watching this practice!!!  All of that offense without Braxton using his running skills on the QB option - it is going to be very tough to keep the Buckeyes out of the endzone this year!!!

The best thing about Pastafarianism? It is not only acceptable, but advisable, to be heavily sauced

buckeye76BHop's picture

Arizona Buckeye:  I couldn't agree more...ole bielema and di'antonio better get ready for those games at home because the Buckeyes will be coming for em.  Those two games will be tough but I can see one of them getting out of control for the home team against the Buckeyes (and I'm REALLY hoping it's Wisconsin! Would love to run it up on them at home after his crying over recruiting).  No more gentlemen's agreement anymore...Urban's not here to make friends.  Pretty sure the results of Purdue or Indiana games will show what I'm getting at.  

"There's nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you."
"I love football. I think it is most wonderful game in world and I despise to lose."
Woody Hayes 1913 - 1987 

Arizona_Buckeye's picture

I can't wait to see baby Bret shake hands with Urban after getting 60 points dropped on them in their own stadium!

The best thing about Pastafarianism? It is not only acceptable, but advisable, to be heavily sauced

thatlillefty's picture

Mike Thomas had a great game but Devin Smith is the best WR on this team. Had he and Braxton been on the team, Devin might have had multiple TD catches yesterday.

Ian_InsideTheShoe's picture

"Starting the event with the old Hoot and Holler drill was a stroke of genius.."

Agree with this 100%. Loved to see that Urban continued many traditions of the Buckeyes, including the Hoot and Holler. 

Was fantastic to see him lead the Buckeyes in "Carmen Ohio" as well.

Is it Saturday Yet's picture

So I'm the only one feeling meh? Poor man's Oregon offensish? I'd rather be all sunshine and flowers, but I'm not. Don't get me wrong I haven't been all that excited after a Sping game ever maybe -- other than to just have football back.

William's picture

Well there are several things you have to consider. 

  1. The QBs couldn't really run and that killed the zone-read for the most part.
  2. The players said that the playcalling on Saturday only resembled about 30% of the offense and they weren't close to running it at full speed.
  3. The players are still learning the offense, and I have a feeling it will be different after Fall Camp. 
FortMeyer's picture

I suppose "Dave" ran repetitively would make you feel better? I bet that's it Saturday, you need your fix, buddy! It's been too long and early withdrawals are starting. You've got to go cold turkey and forget it. You do not need it and will be a better man for ridding it from your life. HaHa.

Is it Saturday Yet's picture

With that stable of backs......I would like to see some more carries.   I knew it coming in that they would work on the weakness of the team last year, and that was obviously passing the ball.  I like my offensive line with some Pancake too.  I wouldn't mind seeing them catch the ball in the flat, an extention of the run akin to Roger Craig in the 80's. 

moopdawg's picture

From what I saw on TV, it looks like Chris Carter has a chance to be a solid contributor.  Hopefully he'll put in some conditioning work over the summer and add some serious size and depth to our D-line. 

For those who actually attended the game, how did he look?

William's picture

He looked pretty good, he ate up a lot of space and was also pretty good at penetrating or pushing his man into the pocket. 

Colin's picture

In a word, hefty...

But seriously, he really surprised me. He was a great gap plugger and he had a good push off the line.

RedStorm45's picture

Can you imagine 3rd and short situations with him and Hankins in the middle? Hopefully he puts in the work because it doesn't sound like the coaches liked him on the O-Line, but if gets some techniques down...we can just rotate him and Hank and always have a huge gap plugger.

Jeremy91's picture

When Simon and Mewhort went at it in the Hoot and Holler drill I went nuts! Gotta respect any guy that can go toe-to-toe against Simon and hold their own!

"Do not pray for an easy life. Rather, pray for the the strength to endure a difficult one" - Bruce Lee

cplunk's picture

Dunn will be amazing. His hands, cuts, leg drive, and vision are sick. May or may not be this year, but he will be a super stud. I'm talking Beanie level. Never seen a freshman back so game ready.

johnblairgobucks's picture

I believe MoC and Robert Smith had some skillz as frosh.

Larryp713's picture

I agree. He definately reminded me of Beanie and Mo Clarett, as far as being ready to go from his first college snap. And he still has fall practice to get him further prepared. It is amazing to think that most of his teammates are preparing for their HS graduation!!!

Respectfully,

Larryp713

Denny's picture

"Drunj in space" is wordsmithing at its finest, Chris. Totally agree.

Taquitos.

toledobuckeyefanjim's picture

I think Meyer's plan is to score a touchdown on every possession. If the Buckeyes get 8 possessions, that's 8 TDs. He won't settle for anything less. That's why he grades his team so tough. A punt is a failure to score in his mind.

Rational MFAN's picture

Dunn is very good, but he will rarely get 20 or so carries in a game to dominate a game in that offense. Not sure Urban had a 1,000 yd rusher in a season at Florida (could be wrong) It had always been a mix of backs, I just look at him as being a change of pace back his whole career as long as Urban is there.

BTW, what happened to the I formation stuff that Urban promised him? Or will we see that in the fall?

Lol can you tell I am still bitter we did not land this kid? It was a shame seeing him run an option yesterday.

Arizona_Buckeye's picture

He used this practice for one thing only - to get the passing game some live reps!  You will see a ton of running once the season starts!  Jordan Hall, Braxton, Carlos, and Dunn will have tons of opportunity to get their hands on the ball via the option read and quick short passing game!  I have a feeling you will be even more better over the next 2 or 3 years over Dunn - he had an amazing set of hands out there yesterday!

The best thing about Pastafarianism? It is not only acceptable, but advisable, to be heavily sauced

RedStorm45's picture

I thought Dunn looked better than Rod Smith has, but Meyer still has it 3) Smith, 4) Dunn on the RB depth chart.  Still, gotta get the kid involved.

Larryp713's picture

He might not as a freshman, but you cannot compare Dunn's opportunities to the Florida teams. Coach Meyer has always said he would love to have a RB with Dunn's skill set (size, speed, vision). Consider also the SEC's primary strength is the defensive lines are at a higher level than opposiing offensive lines, and Dunn can definately become Meyer's first 1000 yd back.

Respectfully,

Larryp713

CaliforniaBuckeyeGirl's picture

Enjoyed the article and all the comments!  I wish my cable provider carried the BTN.  Grrr!  I can't wait until fall.  I hope there aren't too many noon games (9a.m. for me), or I forsee myself getting "sick" and missing some work... :-)