Tuesday Skull Session

By Sarah on February 5, 2013 at 6:00a

Happy Recruitmas Eve, Buckeye fans. This week, an event that we've been waiting for and talking about for many months finally arrives.

I am, of course, referring to the return of Community on Thursday. But I guess National Signing Day tomorrow is a big deal, too.

Here at 11W, we'll have lots of coverage and gray boxes as we all welcome the new Buckeyes into the fold. Alex, Derek, and Miles have especially worked hard this year to bring everyone the latest developments in the recruiting world, so hopefully they'll be able to take it easy for about a day until they focus all their attention on the class of 2014.

Exciting as it may be to think about the potential of the 2013 class, ranked right now No. 2 in the nation by most services, some of us also probably agree with Dontre Wilson when he said that he was "ready to get it over with now," right before he became the latest commitment for the University of Ohio State The Ohio State University.

To be fair, his announcement on a local news station followed numerous macabre stories in the greater Dallas area, so you can't blame him for wanting to declare for Ohio State and then get out of there ASAP. 

But the one-time Oregon commit most likely was tired of a turbulent of sorts recruitment in the past month or so. He no doubt felt betrayed by Chip Kelly leaving for the NFL, and the Ducks' loss is Ohio State's gain. I think we all feel pretty good about Urban Meyer adding another speedy playmaker to his arsenal. 

Until tomorrow is over, though, we'll still wonder about the riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma that is Vonn Bell and try to decipher cryptic Ezekiel Elliott tweets1

However, something entirely different demands our attention tonight when the No. 10 Ohio State basketball team heads to Ann Arbor to face the No. 3 Wolverines for the second time this season. Even though the Buckeyes won the first meeting, it'll be a tough task — after all, last year's team couldn't even pull off the win in Crisler Arena.

Then again, Thad Matta is 17-3 against Michigan in his career. 

YOU AIN'T NOTHIN' BUT A GUTLESS YELLOW TURD. Aaron Craft's defense on Player of the Year candidate Trey Burke was one of the biggest factors in Ohio State's win last month. Given Craft's history of frustrating Burke, it's no surprise that John Beilein will try to play keep away:

Although there is mutual respect between the two players, it's clear that the matchup means a lot to both, not just because it's Ohio State-Michigan, but also because each represents a huge challenge to the other. 

Still, they both claimed that the real competition isn't between the two of them. As Burke told reporters yesterday:  

"I don't take it personally at all," Burke said Monday. "Like I said, it's going to be between Ohio State and Michigan. It's not going to be Aaron Craft-Trey Burke. It's going to be a team thing. I'm going to do whatever it takes to get my team a win."

Getting the win is obviously most important, but you just know that it's a source of pride, too, and Craft wants to continue to get the better of Burke while Burke would love to get revenge on Craft.

Beilein's other strategy to hinder Craft involves trying to blind him with Michigan's Day-Glo uniforms and matching Punky Brewster-esque shoes. Considering Ohio State's alternate uniforms tonight and their "new" athletic logo, maybe we shouldn't mock Michigan too much — just kidding. There's no such thing as mocking Michigan too much.

SON OF A GUNNER. As anyone who has watched Deshaun Thomas play since his freshman year can tell you, he has matured a lot on the court. The B1G's leading scorer will never stop loving to shoot, but he's a much more complete player now, and he has matured off the court, as well. 

On the most recent episode of BTN's The Journey, Thomas was profiled and his son, Deshaun Jr., was included in a segment2. The Lantern provided a few more details about how his son, who was born the same day that Ohio State beat Cincinnati in the Sweet Sixteen, has been motivation for Thomas to work harder.

With a young child and the burden of being the only reliable scorer for a top 10 team, Thomas has a lot on his shoulders, but it doesn't seem to be adversely affecting him. Kyle noticed how Thomas beams when he discusses his son, so the opposite could probably be said.

His coach, for one, is impressed with how he's handled everything:

“Deshaun has obviously blossomed as a person in terms of from where he started on day one to where he was now,” said coach Thad Matta. “I know the parenting situation is something he takes very serious. His life is a little different now than most college guys and him accepting that responsibility, very proud of how he handled that situation.”

Now I guess someone should break it to Mike DeCourcy that Deshaun loves something more than shooting the basketball.

OH, WE'RE HALFWAY THERE. Tonight kicks off the second half of Big Ten season, and though we've also learned quite a bit from the first nine games, a lot can change over the course of the final nine.

Block O or GTFOLooking Sharpie

Joe Rexrode of the Detroit Free Press and BTN's Tom Dienhart and Brent Yarina offered their midseason All-B1G awards. There's mostly an agreement among the three when it comes to the first team. Deshaun Thomas joins Trey Burke and Indiana's Victor Oladipo and Cody Zeller on all three lists, but the writers disagree when it comes to the fifth player. Rexrode chose MSU's Keith Appling while Dienhart went with Appling's teammate Adreian Payne. Yarina's pick was Tim Hardaway Jr. 

At this point, Burke is the consensus POY in the league while Oladipo has unseated Craft as the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year. Gary Harris leads the way for Freshman of the Year and Beilein, Tom Izzo, and Bo Ryan (?) were all mentioned for Coach of the Year, though because it's not football, that award will probably go to whoever wins the conference. 

That, obviously, won't be decided for a while, but among the contenders for the title, Dienhart thinks that Indiana, who will come to the Schott on Sunday, has the toughest row to hoe and Michigan has the easiest. They may have games against Ohio State, Indiana, and Michigan State remaining, but the Wolverines still have two games against Penn State on the schedule, so that's probably an accurate assessment.

THE QUIET MAN. Mackensie Alexander is one of the top players in the state of Florida, a five-star cornerback with offers from nearly every major program. He'll make his choice known tomorrow on ESPNU. ESPN wrote a story about him. 

So naturally, he probably can't get enough of all the attention, right? Well, not according to said ESPN story. Alexander does his best to avoid any of it. From the impoverished town of Immokalee, Florida, Alexander has a small circle of trust that includes his twin brother, Mackenro, who will also play college football, and his parents, who emigrated from Haiti and don't speak much English. 

Another member of that circle is his algebra teacher, Jori Mason, a graduate of Ohio State who helped both brothers, as well as other students, get their academics in order so that they could attend college. 

Life isn't easy for many in Immokalee, and one person who did make it out was former Ohio State linebacker Brian Rolle, who put it, "Immokalee made me learn how to work."

For Mackensie, who has worked hard but maybe not talked much about it, he'll leave for college somewhere and his reason for continuing to work hard is "I want to take care of my parents one day. That's why I'm so driven."

YOU GOTTA LINK ABOUT IT, LINK, LINK ABOUT IT. Ohio State baseball is picked to finish second in the B1G... Accident or not, Jordan Hulls is very punchable... Bama's weight room is the largest city in Alabama... S-E-C!... Fire Mack Brown... Don't you forget about The Avengers meets The Breakfast Club trailer... The Adventures of Pete & Pete 20th (!) Anniversary Reunion... How rude: The best insults from 90s TV kids.



Killer nuts's picture

"There's no such thing as mocking Michigan too much"... Truer words were never spoken

BuckeyeFreak4844's picture

Couldnt agree more, wish i could think of that outrageous joe dirt quote his dad says but oh well.

Michigan Sucks!

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

There are some Buckeye fans that actually believe you can mock M*chigan too much. :o

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

Those shoes have to be an NCAA violation. Even for M*chigan they're ugly.

With the exception of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, and Family Matters, I hated all the other shows on that list.

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

Normal Buck's picture

Apparently the new "scheme" to try and get Burke away from Craft involves some kind of aerobics?

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

Why would they need that? I'm sure the BigTen refs will do a good enough job of keeping Craft away from Burke when they put him on the bench with his 2nd foul. If he doesn't pick up two within the first 5 minutes i'll be surprised.

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

Abe Froman's picture

Chocked full of information today!  Thanks Sarah.  Cody Zeller should be POY.  If Craft once again shuts down Burke (less than 12 points), then he deserves DPOY.  That's all I am saying.

Basking in the wake of mediocrity.....

Killer nuts's picture

I think zeller is the second best player on his own team

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

Let me guess, you believe Oladipo is better?

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

hail2victors9's picture

Yes, and I'd have to agree.  At least, for POY of the year candidate.  Personally, I think the B1G Champion will determine B1G POY.  Burke, Oladipo/Zeller, Thomas.

Those who stay will be CHAMPIONS!
~Bo Schembechler

acBuckeye's picture

I can see scUM playing Burke off the ball a lot in this game, bringing him off a bunch of staggered screens and so on and so forth. Tank can't miss from the outside like he did against the Huskers, or we could be in trouble.

LouGroza's picture

If they play Burke off the ball, they need to put Scott on the ball to create many, many TOs.

Denny's picture

Six seasons and a movie


jmacbuckeye's picture

Anyone know if they are calling for dogs and cats to sleep together, fire from heavens, and other end of the world type stuff on the Oregon recruiting boards? I hope so, that would be awesome.
I don't comment on recruiting at all but follow it intently. Dontre Wilson was one of my favorite players when we were recruiting him months ago before he picked Oregon in the first place; I was disappointed then that we lost him because to me, this guy is going to be very special in a Buckeye uniform. This may appear to be an out-of-nowhere flip due to Chip Kelly's leaving and all, but it would have never happened had Urban and the rest of Buckeye gang not laid the groundwork months ago. Great job to the coaches for sticking with it.
Now, let's seal the deal with another long-time fave of mine Vonn Bell. Go Bucks!

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

You know Dontre, what Chip and Oregon did to you was just unconscionable! Just plain wrong! I would never do you wrong like that. How could you go to a school that lied to you like that. It was just wrong Dontre, just wrong! Do you understand that Dontre? Now say it !!.……Dontre: “To me, it was wrong," Yeah, now you’ve got it Dontre. You know I would NEVER do anything like that, don’t you Dontre?
We at Ohio St have always been an honest and honorable university. Well, except maybe for that last few years but that’s because we got caught and besides I wasn’t here to watch over everything like I am now. Son, you come to OSU and you will be a star in Chip’s, I mean MY offense. We will be running the fastest paced offense in America and you will be the focal point of Chip’s uh, I mean my offense. We’re going to win 4 NC’s with you here. We’ll make you a Heisman winner and first round pick in the NFL draft. Now when you go back home, don’t answer their calls until after you’ve signed your LOA because you know they’re just going to tell you more lie’s. You do know that don’t you? Dontre: “Yes sir” Their liars Dontre, just a bunch of liars. See you next fall son. 


"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

hodge's picture

I don't know what's funnier, the butthurt or overall disregard for the rules of grammar. 

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

The butthurt.

you come to OSU and you will be a star in Chip’s, I mean MY offense

You would be surprised how many Oregon fans believe Urban stole his offense from Chip Kelly.

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

Poison nuts's picture

That is very funny considering that UFM is thought of as one of the true pioneers of the modern spread offense & that Chips offense is actually a version of what Urban had been doing for years...

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

Unky Buck's picture

I'm kind of a fan "LOA"...apparently it's not Letter of Intent but Letter of Attempt. I'm thinking he should learn his List Of Abbreviations...
But the butthurt is rather humorous too.


oregonianbuckeye's picture

Really excited to have D. Wilson in this class. Guy will bring a lot to our return game, and provides a lot of options on offense as well. Props to Meyer and Herman for bringing in 3 excellent guys from Texas this year. Good stuff.

gwalther's picture

Almost would've just rathered securing Ezekiel Elliott, a Buckeye through and through, rather than possibly lose him for a guy that chose "The University of Ohio State" as his backup plan.
I am currently having nightmares/flashbacks about Terrelle Pryor and his feelings of entitlement.

Class of 2008

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

I don't know why people only get on Pryor for doing it. Jamal Marcus did the same thing.


"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

buckeyedude's picture

I understand your trepidation. Anytime one of these kids say's "The U of OSU,"  I have those flashbacks as well.
But I think the first time Dontre returns a kickoff or punt return for 95 yards and 6 points, I think you'll forget about all that.



buckeyebart's picture

Yep, every Buckeye through and through takes off the week before signing and takes an official visit to his parents college, while tweeting secrets and confusing the hell out of eveyone. I hope he still signs with us, but ???? Apparently Dontre has decided not to wait and has officially became a Buckeye through and through !
This is college recruiting, these kids are 17-18 years old.
Quite frankly, I don't give a damn what they call us, as long as Urban wants them and they sign with us in the end. Because in the end, they will learn. It is THE Ohio State University and they will know Carmen Ohio word for word !
Sorry GWALTHER this was not directed at you, just a couple of months of recruiting nonsense from many.
I need a Zanex

gwalther's picture

Eze's decision to visit Mizzou, though apparently independent of this fact, coincided with our pursuit of Dontre. I think the fact that his decision is now closer to a toss up is a direct result of our pursuit of Dontre. It's cool your sarcasm glossed over those considerations.
And, call me old fashioned, but I think as a future student you should know the name of the school you're about to attend.

Class of 2008

btalbert25's picture

Meh, recruiting isn't just getting the kid to commit, it's getting him to stay on board.  Once you secure the recruit you can't forget about them and stop recruiting them.  I don't know how much Elliot reads blogs or follows tweets but I'm sure he heard all the talk about how Urban didn't have any playmakers and Ohio State needs playmakers etc.  Perhaps he decided to take the visit to say REMEMBER ME????
The other stuff after the fact where he stopped talking to the media and all that, I believe was just a way of giving the idiots who keep tweeting him and his family and everyone else a hard time.  I'd sure get a laugh out of giving 40 and 50 year old dudes heart attacks with every tweet I made, after they harrassed my family and me.

avail31678's picture

His decision, by virtually all sources, is not closer to a toss up at all.  He's all Buckeye. 

Poison nuts's picture

I think there is a possibility that these kids say "The University of Ohio State" when announcing to add just a little bit more drama to the announcement...like there is that split second where you think they are going somewhere else until the Ohio State part comes in...I could be wrong on that - but it seems possible.

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

cplunk's picture

Is it just me, or does the whole "The Quiet Man" section read like a huge hint that there is a surprise OSU commitment coming?
To my knowledge neither kid considered OSU, but the section just screams "read between the lines".

AndyVance's picture

I thought the same thing... "What are you really trying to tell me here?"

BuckeyeLurker0509's picture

How do you not know the name of the university you're going to be spending the next 3-4-5 years at?

hail2victors9's picture

Thanks for the trip down memory lane with the 90's shows.  Camp Anawanna.  Wow.  I had forgotten about all the Nickelodeon gold.  Can't forget Wild and Crazy Kids, now.

Those who stay will be CHAMPIONS!
~Bo Schembechler

hodge's picture

Clarissa Explains it All was pretty rad, as well. Gotta send some love to Legends of the Hidden Temple and GUTS, too. 

hail2victors9's picture

Yessir, Hodge!  Man, I want to be a kid again.  I think it's my due diligence to mention Double Dare with these other game shows.

Those who stay will be CHAMPIONS!
~Bo Schembechler

osubuckeye4life's picture

Double Dare was great! Other great ones from my childhood on Nick:
You Can't Do That On Television
Hey Dude 
Salute Your Shorts
Are You Afraid of the Dark?

Unky Buck's picture

One of the greatest theme songs ever...


Buckeyevstheworld's picture

What did you do to my ears? :(

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

Unky Buck's picture

Whatever it was, it was glorious!


hail2victors9's picture

Wow, did not realize/remember that Steve Buscemi was Mr. Fickle.

Those who stay will be CHAMPIONS!
~Bo Schembechler

Chief B1G Dump's picture

1) Happy NSD Eve!
2) No mention of the Ketchup vs Mustard uniforms tonight in AA.  GO BUCKS!
3) It is also my birthday!  Many gifts to arrive tonight and tomorrow!
4) That is the most exclamation points I have ever used in one post!!!
5) Do not care for the new logo one bit...
6) Did I mention GO BUCKS!!!

GoBucks713's picture

every post for the next few days should have a reference to Community. Also, if you live in Columbustown, The Pearl is opening today, which is Cameron Mitchell's newest creation. The concept is a New Orleans style oyster bar with high end bar food and a good selection of beers. There is a manager there, and I can't remember his name for the life of me, but he is a shorter black guy with braids and dresses preppy, and every time I see him, all I can think of is "POP POP". That's right, Cameron Mitchell hired Magnitude's doppelganger to manage his new restaurant.

-The Aristocrats!

hodge's picture

Can't wait to get back to the Capital City to hit this place up. Checked their menu out last night; their cocktails look awesome, especially with the barrel-aged Manhattan and Margarita that they're offering. Not to mention the fact that they're offering old-school punch bowls for the table, and that I caught a Ramos Gin Fizz, as well. Good to see that egg white is making a comeback in cocktails--it's essential for a good sour. 

GoBucks713's picture

Yeah, true mixology is a lost art if you ask me. They do things right there and really in most CMR joints they have real artists behind the bar.

-The Aristocrats!

Riggins's picture

Damnit! Stupid laptop. I misclicked the downvote.  Everyone please upvote this man!

GoBucks713's picture

Way to go Riggins. HAHAH!

-The Aristocrats!

Estrada's picture

So you Britta'd that upvote?
You're the AT&T of people!
(not really, I just love that line)

Jack Fu's picture

Since no one else has done it, I will: props on the 'Flight of the Conchords' reference.

tampa buckeye's picture

Sara to be honest you are really starting to impress me with your writing. Big ups from someone. That didn't care for you from jump street. Keep up the goods!

toad1204's picture

Hate the Logo...  If they wanted a high school paint project I'm sure they could have done better.  To get this far this thing had to have been vetted by multiple committees lawyers and such. 
Com'n man. 
Sarah- Gold star for having the best links week in and week out.  Love the Footnotes.

Nothing like dancing on the field in 02... 

Unky Buck's picture

I wonder if they hired the same people who came up with the "By Mennen" slogan...


Ohio State Ombre's picture

so whats the deal with mackensie? is he not considering Ohio st? i am assuming so since we havnt heard even mumblings from anyone including the staff, or at least i havnt ready anything

CaliforniaBuckeyeGirl's picture

Wilson committed last night.  Tonight I am seeing The Who.  Tomorrow is NSD.  Saturday is my birthday.  This just might be the best week ever!*
*Except for the whole trying to get organized to move while still working thing.  That part still kinda sucks. Has anyone invented teleportation yet? That would make things SO much easier!