Debriefing: Michigan State

By Jeff Beck on September 30, 2012 at 9:00a
Lee Corso can see into the future

Braxton tried to do his best Denard impression on a few drives, but as we all know, no one can out Denard Denard. You watched a huge Buckeye win, and you’re better for it. This is your Michigan State Debriefing.

Water Cooler Prep (Everything you need to one paragraph)

This one started off as good as any Buckeye fan could have expected: a balanced 75-yard drive for 6. Sparty countered with a three and the two teams traded punts until Braxton decided to throw a ball into double coverage, resulting in a pick. The defense held, rendering the turnover fruitless. The two teams continued to alternate punts until MSU's Dan Conroy nailed a 50-yarder to bring the game within one. OSU countered with a 66-yard drive of their own ending in three to make it 10-6. That’s when the tackling demons of games past decided to revisit the Scarlet and Gray. At OSU’s 29, Andrew Maxwell dumped a short pass to WR Keith Mumphery who broke approximately 15,000 tackles and dragged 5 more defenders into the end zone on his way to a score. Braxton Miller decided to step up on the next drive and throw one of the prettiest passes of his career: a 63-yard bomb down the sideline to Devin Smith for a TD. The OSU offense started off the fourth quarter with a promising drive before an OMG NO PLEASE NO! moment in which Miller hyperextended his knee (it looked a lot worse) and fumbled. The Spartans took advantage, picking up three on a Conroy 48-yarder to narrow it to 17-16. However, with the game on the line Fickell dialed up the right plays to get out of East Lansing with a victory. Take a deep breath. 5-0. Big win.

Heard at the tailgate (The talk before the game)

“Shutting down Le’Veon Bell will be the key. If we hold him to 2-3 yards per carry we leave that hellhole with a W.”

“Andrew Maxwell…more like Andrew Maxterrible, ya know what I'm sayin?”

“The MSU D freaks me out. A win in this game is huge.”

Heard at the afterparty (The Deets at the end of the game)

<3All you need to know about this team and coach.

“The D took a huge step today. Holding Bell to 2.6 yards per carry is unreal.”

“Did you see Meyer’s emotion during and after the game on the sideline? I love this new head coach!”

“Still pretty worried about this secondary…” (this is your pessimistic friend).

Give that man a buckeye leaf (Player of the game)

Braxton Miller was 16-23 for 179 yards with 1 TD and 1 INT through the air and 23 carries for 136 yards on the ground, totaling 315 total yards. For those counting at home, that’s 82% of the team’s total yardage: enough for me to forgive the three turnovers.

(Editor's note: This section of the column has been pretty easy to write week-to-week. Copy, paste, success.)

Weekly snot knocker (Biggest Hit)

Urban Meyer plays players like Carlos Hyde on special teams. This strategy occasionally sees returns. Penalty or not (it certainly wasn’t a fair catch) Hyde’s slobberwilly on punt returner Nick Hill was disgusting. You saw it and screamed “OHHHH!” at the top of your lungs, scaring everyone in the room.

Did you see that?! (Play of the game)

Seriously…did you?


Quite possibly one of the better throws of Braxton’s young (can you believe he’s still a true sophomore?) career.

When you sank into your chair (The moment buckeye football disgraced your family)

I count 7 (or 8) missed tackles on this play. With a little over four minutes left in the third quarter, MSU’s Keith Mumphery found the painted grass with 300 Buckeye defenders hanging from his hips.

Jim Tressel's Least Favorite Moment of the game

Hard to pin down a JT LFM in this one, but it’s been said after each and every one of Miller’s turnovers Tressel adjusted the rabbit ears on his 1982 Panasonic and screamed “WHAT THE HELL’S WRONG WITH THIS THING?!?!” as he kicked a Reader's Digest across the mint green linoleum floor of his den.

What you texted your friend at the end of each quarter

First Quarter: What a first drive…#BRAXTONYES

Second Quarter: Turnovers. Looking like Michigan out here.

Third Quarter: Defensive backs of this team…woof.

Fourth Quarter: BIG WIN!!! OH-

It was over when

This one wasn’t over 'til it was over. The Buckeyes needed a Carlos Hyde 5-yard rush on 3rd and 4 from the MSU 49 late in the fourth quarter to ice it for good. 

Bonus Tweet

This has been your Michigan State Debriefing...end transmission.


Comments Show All Comments

BuckeyeChris's picture

A few quick thoughts... 
* The worst part of the Hyde hit wasn't the penalty.  It was his priorities. Instead of punching the guy in the head, put your head on the football. 
* Speaking of Hyde... I think my new favorite play is, "Hand the ball to Hyde." I am really not crazy about the 3.5 seconds it takes for the read-opition plays to develop. It will grow on me, and of course anything beats DAVE on 1st and 2nd down. 
* Our defense, especially tackling and linebackers have been very disappointing (stating the obvious, I know). 

TMac's picture

I count 7 (or 8) missed tackles on this play. With a little over four minutes left in the third quarter, MSU’s Keith Mumphery found the painted grass with 300 Buckeye defenders hanging from his hips.

Can we Please, Please, Please break this habit!!

ONE Not Done!

BuckeyeChris's picture

It seems maybe the staff is over-emphasizing "toughness" over technique (see the Hyde hit yesterday. Had the emphasis been on putting a hat on the ball, we may have scored a touchdown. Instead, a pentalty and a first down MSU).
What I see is too many guys trying to make Sportscenter when they should be trying to make a tackle.  

dtanmango's picture

Yeah, gang tackling is always good, but none of them were really going for tackles, they were all trying to strip the ball. Just make the tackle and move on!


Kansas City Buckeye's picture

Just think how dangerous Miller will be when he learns to pitch the ball on the option.

Tim's picture

Yep, first fumble could have been prevented if he had pitched it, and there were a lot of others.  It seems like he pre-determines what he's going to do sometimes.

jaked23's picture

We really could have won this game by 2 scores. The turnovers really hurt us. I'll take an away W anytime though go bucks!

NH-IO's picture

Plenty of things to improve on but, bottom line, big win.  Hope everyone will be back next week for a huge game against brasky.

JohnBoy's picture

The Braxton knee thing almost put me into cardiac arrest, just slide at the end!

Thank you sir! May I have another?

gwalther's picture

Agreed on the secondary needing work. Get OJ out of there.

Class of 2008

O-H Kee Pa's picture

Random question: what is the "100" decal on the back of the helmet for?

Edit: never mind. 100th anniversary of being in the BIG.

southernstatesbuckeye's picture

Disgusted at the dirty intentions of the MSU O line. Glad they crawled away with a loss after the tactics in the pile.

I like cookies.

Jdadams01's picture

Definitely looking forward to Braxton's junior and senior season in this offense. Nothing against Hyde, etc., but I feel he'll be much more comfortable pitching to Elliot or Marshall.

buckeye76BHop's picture

See those were what types of texts I send to my friends bc as this season is great (bc it's the Buckeyes of course) 2013 and 2014 will be when Brax will have "weapons" like himself.  Like how will this offense be when OSU has those you mentioned and others.  I love and respect all these guys Braxton has now...Philly and Smith will turn out real good by the time it's all said and done.  But OSU needs just a few more speed burners to make this a tough offense.  Which it will be eventually...the defense will be sick IMHO.  

"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 

btalbert25's picture

I think 2013 will be a very good year but 2014 is THE year.  Elliot and Marshall are going to have great moments, but they may well have a slow start or Freshman moments.  If we think the team is going to be great next year simply because he'll have a couple new weapons I'm affraid we may be disappointed. 
I think having a season under his belt in this new offense, and really the offense as a whole getting this season in, will be much more impactful than they new weapons.  Don't get me wrong, those guys will make an impact to be sure.  If Braxton can master this offense, even with the talent he has now, this team would be scary good. 
Anyway, the Reason I think 2014 is THE year, is Marshall and Elliot and (Gibson, Quick, Timmons, Foster or whoever) have a year under their belts, they will be really dynamic and you'll have a senior, hopefully reigning Heisman leading the team. 

gravey's picture

Hyde had another slobber-knocker on a block...either a sweep or end-around to the right.  Here nailed their LB...nearly decleating him, but it appeared that the LB kind of flew into the play as it went out of bounds.  Herbie and Brent...totally missed it...

buckeyedude's picture

No disrespect to the others, but it seems to me that the folks here that really know football seem to appreciate Hyde more. Obviously he was the correct choice in that instance, when we needed him.
He has the power, and as far as speed goes, isn't he the 2nd or 3rd fastest on the team behind Roby and Braxton?



cplunk's picture

Disagree with that.
Hyde is fast, strong, and a good inside back. That's it though. He isn't truly special. He doesn't have the vision, cutbacks, or leverage of the truly great backs. He also often misreads the play and goes to the wrong side of Braxton.
what is going to be funny is when Jordan Hall and Hyde play at the same time and Hyde's stats improve massively. There are going to be people all over this site exclaiming how right they were about Hyde when really Hyde's better stats will be a direct result of Hall's presence and putting outside pressure on the defense.
Dont get me wrong, I like Hyde. He's solid and has good physical abilities. He just isn't a Beanie, a Clarrett, or even a Pittman. Dunn will be a much better back once he learns the offense and how to block. Right now Hyde is better though.

cajunbuckeye's picture

In your world, who is Hall compared to? Just curious.

An angry fan...rooting for an angry team...led by angry coaches

cplunk's picture

Nobody really. His role in Urban's offense doesn't really have an equivalent in previous OSU seasons. It isn't so much that Hall is a great back- he's a little slower than is ideal- it is just that he is the best fit for the jack-of-all trades role that has to exist in an Urban offense. 
Hyde's role, the inside runner, is the easy one to fill. The Hall role and the QB role are the two that have to fit for Urb's offense to click.
If I had to compare Hall to anyone, I'd say he's playing the role of a slower Percy Harvin. If I had to pick a past OSU back to fill that role, I'd slobber all over Brandon Saine. He would have been a perfect fit for this role in this offense, but instead got stuck as a utilitarian second-best-at-lots-of-different roles player in a Tressel offense.
its not so much Hall himself that is important as it is having an effective player who can be that outside runner, split wide receiver, blocker, etc and can read the defense and adjust. He has to be smart and a one read then make a cut kind of back. Hall is the closest we have to that.
our other backs just don't have those skills, either right now or ever. Hyde is single handedly responsible for two or three desperation Braxton scrambles a game due to reading the defense wrong and going to the wrong side.
Again, no offense to Hyde. I like him. He's just a back built for a different offense. He'll be very effective when things start clicking, but in this offense those things start with the QB (which we've got) and the utilitarian RB role (which Hall is the only back we have that is close to filling). 
You can tell our other backs can't fill that role because when Hall was out in previous games, Meyer went do far as to put a WR (Brown) in that role.

southbymidwest's picture

Ya know, it certainly is easiser to watch this game tonight knowing that the Bucks won it. Had to turn  the channel a few times yesterday, couldn't stand it, oh me of little faith.