Eleven Warriors Round Table: Week Three

By Jeff Beck on September 13, 2013 at 11:30a
Round Table Y'all

What's that? You want to hear the witty commentary and rock-solid opinions of a few of the hippest Buckeye bloggers in the game? You came to the right place youngblood, we've got that on tap.This week I've teed up Ramzy "I've got a cool enough name that I don't need a nickname" Nasrallah, Chris "Dat's Dat Dude" Lauderback and Nicholas "The guy in my Lit 101 class that writes for 11W" Jervey. Pull up a stool, keep both hands where we can see them and don't forget to tip your server. This is the Eleven Warriors Round Table.

Once again the Buckeyes won, and once again they dropped in the polls. Talk the fanbase off the ledge, why does this NOT MATTER in September?

Ramzy: If September mattered Tate Forcier and Denard Robinson would have three Heisman Trophies between them. I don't think further explanation is needed.

Chris: I’m pretty sure I’m on an island here but I do think it matters, at least a little bit. Yes, it’s early and there is still a ton of football to be played but with the schedule Ohio State has this year combined with the notion voters are just looking for a reason to discount the Buckeyes, I believe it was absolutely in the team’s best interest to heel-stomp the non-conference creampuffs to take the stink off the opponents, even if just a little. Throw in Braxton being nicked up and I wouldn’t be surprised if the Buckeyes drop again this week if they don’t produce a convincing 20+ point win in Berkeley.

This is the first year I can remember in which I’m not supremely confident that an undefeated OSU squad would finish in the top two the BCS if there is a one-loss SEC team and an undefeated team from say the PAC-12, Big 12 or ACC.

Nicholas: Because the odds of being sent to Supermax for tearing off a mattress's tag are greater than the odds that Ohio State's placement in Week 2 polls would keep it out of the title game.

It's September. Contrary to popular belief, pollsters are not morons. If Ohio State plays better than Oregon or Clemson or whomever, Ohio State will be #1 or #2 by the end of the season. This isn't a Boise State situation: an undefeated season will land Ohio State a spot in the national championship game. 

Over the past decade it seems the Buckeye defense has had trouble with quick screens and short passes (exactly what Sonny Dykes will look to do this weekend). What is the key to halting a slow nickel and dime into oblivion?

Ramzy: Longer defensive linemen are helpful here. Steve Miller looked about eight feet tall on Saturday. Disguising schemes prior to the snap is also helpful.

Chris: If I knew the correct answer to this question I wouldn’t be in my current field. That said, I think patience is huge. There won’t be a lot of sacks this weekend and the Buckeyes need to make sure Cal isn’t afforded the chance to take advantage of frustrated play that is too quick to force the issue. I’d also like to see a lot less cushion at the line of scrimmage by coverage guys and the less linebackers we see trying to cover a receiver, the better.

Nicholas: Creating confusion is the key. In spite of his early success, Jared Goff is a true freshman quarterback making the third start of his career. The defense doesn't need to blitz seven to create pressure; as long as they can come from unexpected angles and capitalize on tendencies, they can create enough hesitation to make the simple throws tougher. If the defensive line can get pressure on its own and get in the way of passes to the flats and line of scrimmage, they might not even need to blitz at all.

Note: this plan depends on the secondary sticking to assignments. To the defense's credit, they've been much better at that this year.

Braxton Miller has yet to play a full game in 2013. Is his Heisman campaign officially over? Why or why not?

Ramzy: His Heisman campaign isn't over because he hasn't played a full game yet. It's over because you're kidding yourself if he's going to suddenly start playing full games. It's over because Kenny Guiton has yet to run the Buckeye offense into Bollman-like futility. It's over because the Buckeyes are going to keep rolling with or without him.

Chris: It’s not officially over by any stretch considering it’s mid-September and I don’t think any other player has played out of his mind. The Heisman is won in the month of November so as long as Miller stays upright, and by extension stays in the conversation, there’s still plenty of time for a Heisman run to play itself out. 

Nicholas: There are 10-11 games left for him and if any school can publicize its Heisman candidate it's Ohio State. But the previous two weeks have hurt his cause because Heisman candidates need eye-popping numbers. He hasn't been accumulating them, and somebody out there has.

If Braxton does play a full game, how many yards passing will he have? How many yards rushing?

Im fabulousIf Sept. mattered Forcier and Robinson would have 3 Heismans 

Ramzy: This can't be overstated: Cal does not play any defense. Four quarters of Braxton Miller could top 400 yards of offense, with 150 yards of rushing only because he'll run out of bounds.

Chris: With a gimpy knee, it’s hard to say but it can’t hurt that the Cal defense is amazingly bad. I’ll take 250 through the air with another 80 on the ground. I just can’t see Urban calling more than 7 or 8 designed runs and on the zone/read, I wonder if Braxton won’t decide to give it up pre-snap just to minimize the amount of hits he’ll take.

Nicholas: California's defense is atrocious. Braxton will 280 yards passing and 70 yards rushing before Kenny Guiton does mop-up duty in the fourth quarter.

Cal RB, Brendan Bigelow, had a huge game against the Buckeyes last season (4 carries for 160 yards and 2 TDs). What do you expect his stat-line to look like on Saturday?

Ramzy: He'll have under 100 yards rushing because Ohio State won't play its worst tackling game of the decade against Call for the second year in a row.

Chris: Last year was a fluke in a year when the Buckeyes were particularly horrific at tackling. This year, Bigelow comes in averaging just 68 rush yards a game on 4.1 per carry with another 30 rec/yards per game and he’s not going to catch anybody by surprise. I’ll say he gets around 70 yards and maybe a score.  

Nicholas: He only averaged 4.1 yards per carry against Northwestern and Portland State, so assuming no blown plays I predict 12-16 carries for 40-50 yards.

Dontre Wilson carried the ball 5 times last week (one for a TD). Do you expect that number to rise against Cal? Why or why not?

Ramzy: He'll have the same-ish number of carries, as I expect more players to touch the ball this week against the Bears' high school defense.

Chris: I do expect Wilson to get a few more touches this week but I wouldn’t be surprised to see Meyer lean on Jordan Hall pretty heavily in the run game, especially early, as he might feel more comfortable relying on more seasoned players in Ohio State’s first roadie of the season.

Nicholas: His carries will only increase if he plays in garbage time. Otherwise it should be about the same, as Ohio State doesn't want to overexpose him against one opponent.

Who is the Buckeye defensive player we’ll be talking about after the game. Why?

Ramzy: Jamal Marcus was beastly last week, but San Diego State's terribleness stole the spotlight. His play should steal it back on Saturday.

Chris:  Doran Grant. He’s going to see plenty of balls thrown his way with Cal’s passing-heavy offense featuring a true freshman quarterback that will have been counseled all week about staying away from Roby. Honorable mention goes to Joey Bosa. My man crush on that dude is already at Defcon 3.

Nicholas: Doran Grant stands to benefit from a couple of factors: California will throw the ball at least 40 times, and if Goff has any sense he'll stay away from Bradley Roby's side of the field. If anybody is going to come away with a couple of interceptions, Grant's the most likely guy to do it.

What is your final score prediction?

Ramzy: Ohio State 59, Cal 31

Chris: I’m going a little conservative considering Braxton’s knee and this being the first roadie. I’ll say Ohio State 34, Cal 20.  

Nicholas: Ohio State 55, California 21.

Which U.S. President living or dead does Urban Meyer remind you of? Explain yourself.

Ramzy: John Adams. Energetic, vivacious and more philosophical than political. Refused to refer to the French by name - called them "X, Y and Z" which is 18th century Colonial American slang for "our rival."

Chris: Teddy Roosevelt. Because both are/were complete badasses.  

Nicholas: Grover Cleveland. He kicked ass in his dream job for one term, then took an extended absence from the job against his will, then returned to kick even more ass in a second term.


Comments Show All Comments

BTBuckeye's picture

Rush 2, Drop 9 into coverage on 3rd downs. I dub the new defense the "Mosquito Net"

d1145fresh's picture

I have a feeling Noah Spence will get an INT this game and Roby will have a sack/caused fumble on an corner blitz. I hope OSU comes out in a fury and keeps the pedal down the entire game. This could be a nice launching point game like MSU was last year.

Citrus's picture

I agree. Noticed that Spence has dropped into coverage quite a bit last game.

Will in Arizona's picture

His position often drops into coverage in Ohio State's defense.  He even did it last year (in his limited playing time).

CGroverL's picture

The "LEO" as we used to have is now being called "Viper" but is still the 7...Cam Heyward was good at stepping back into coverage and getting his hands on passes when he played "LEO", but it seemed like that was something that the Bucks didn't have last season as Nate Williams just didn't move as well it seemed he did before injuries hit.
Spence (now playing the 7 spot) is a perfect "Leo" when it comes to size and speed and in dropping back should get his paws on a pass here and there making easy pickings for the Bucks' defense. Time will tell, but I see plenty of opportunities for turnovers with Spence as LEO, Viper, 7, or whatever Withers and Fick want to call it.

"I hope they're last in everything". One of Meyer's comments when speaking of TTUN after being hired at Ohio State.



gwalther's picture

Teddy Roosevelt is the only answer for that final question.

Class of 2008

jaxbuckeye's picture

Without out a DOUBT the greatest president of all time.  Didn't let politics dictate his decisions.  Strong military leader with strong environmentalism is great in my book.

CGroverL's picture

I'm old (I'm 40), but since I'd like to use a president that I knew of a bit more, I'd choose Reagan. While everyone may be wondering why and thinking I'm an idiot....My father-in-law had a very hard and stressful job during the Reagan years. It seemed that all Reagan cared about, besides Nancy, was making tons of MX missiles. I like MX missiles and it is nice to finally have a couple or few on offense. My father-in-law's job was manufacturing MX missiles. 
Besides...Reagan had that war mongering type persona, right? Yeah....make missiles and try like heck to use them....sure "Speak softly and carry a big stick", but I'll take Dontre Wilson and the missiles that score quickly and often.....no true explosions needed, except in Ann Arbor, of course.

"I hope they're last in everything". One of Meyer's comments when speaking of TTUN after being hired at Ohio State.



Earle's picture

Yes, Teddy Roosevelt is the obvious answer for this week, considering he was an avid hunter who once shot and killed a bear.
Interestingly, the term Teddy Bear came from an unsuccessful bear hunt in which a bear was cornered by another hunter and tied to a tree for Roosevelt to shoot.  He considered it unsporting and refused to do so.

Snarkies gonna snark. 

stittracer99's picture

Abraham Lincoln because he will lead the good guys to victory over the South (eastern conference).

HotSauceCommittee's picture

And he was a badass vampire killer.

droessl's picture

Cal's defense is so bad, they probably couldn't even stop a Craig James senate campaign. 

DJ Byrnes's picture


Californian by birth, Marionaire by the Grace of President Warren G. Harding.

pjtobin's picture

I was going to say something on your behalf DJ. I enjoy your version of WGH very much. I don't think UFM is a drug kingpin though. 

Bury me in my away jersey, with my buckeye blanket. A diehard who died young. Rip dad. 

bodast67's picture

I don't know PJTOBIN, according to some writers, Urban IS responsible for the entire drug culture in Florida, America, and beyond...
and a bunch of murders too...




     " I hope when I die, I die laughing"...                

Nicholas Jervey's picture

No coach alive is hard enough to compare to Warren G.

Ceci n'est pas une signature.

AndyVance's picture

Yeah, that pretty much soured the whole roundtable for me, though props to Nicholas for solid rationale on Grover C.

theDuke's picture

I have a feeling we will unload a LOT of our ballhawking super athletic freak DBs this weekend. I think Withers mentioned something about a 3-2-6 or some craziness. That would be awesome.


theDuke's picture

Also, has anyone noticed, has the Staff used Dontre as a deep threat at all yet? a la Teddy Ginn?


Jdadams01's picture

They haven't had any reason to pull that out of the bag yet. It'll get used against a tougher test. Imagine the wheel route possibilities with that speed.

theDuke's picture

man, that's a good call on the wheel, JD! Didn't even think of that play.


jdagrava.1's picture

I'm not sure the kid has the height to be effective in that role - besides, he's best suited when the ball is in his hands and he's making people miss in space.  Why chance anything on a lofted deep ball for 50 yards that has a 50/50 shot at being completed when you can fire a sure thing screen pass that he dances away for a score?

"It takes a little something special to be a great player.  What you got in you, we're going to find out.  And if there's a touch of greatness in there, how cool would that be?"

-Urban F. Meyer

theDuke's picture

Grava, i'm thinking more like the turn and burn straight line or like a down field slant. Teddy didn't go up for many catches, rather he and troy had great awareness and troy would hit him in stride perfectly.  I hope Braxton and Wilson can get that kind of music going on! 


lsjSnail's picture

All he needs is separation on the post or wheel.

heartofabuckeye's picture

JDA.1 And how tall was brandon saine? Worked well with him !

USMC11917's picture

I am afraid Guiton would underthrow him. He has great touch passes and decision making abilities but regardless of the cause, his long ball is a big weakness.

Will in Arizona's picture

Even his short balls give me pause - he just has no zip on his passes.

saevel25's picture

Play man coverage with your two best cover corners, leave Shazier in, put in 4 safeties to play match up zone. Basically pin there ears back and go hit people.
So that would be
3 - 1 - 7
the 2 extra safeties should be able to help cover over top, and have enough speed to come down hill and punish the rushing attack. We've got some athletic safeties with speed, let them run.

theDuke's picture

SAEVEL, this is exactly what i'm thinking! Could be a great opportunity for guys like Vonn Bell, methinks.  


Ahh Saturday's picture

Ross Fulton pointed out yesterday some of the problems involved with playing man coverage against a spread attack:

I know its too nuanced for bar/talk radio arguments, but man coverage is pretty passe against spread sets because pattern matching gives you the benefit of man coverage without the run game problems caused by having your linebackers have to turn and run with WRs..

doodah_man's picture

"If September mattered Tate Forcier and Denard Robinson would have three Heisman Trophies between them."
That. Thanks for the perspective Ramzy!

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

buckeyepastor's picture

What bothers me about the drop in polls is Oregon's jump.   They have one legit tough match-up this year at Stanford.   As they currently sit at #2, they will make about as strong a case as tOSU unless NW, Wisky, and TTUN win every other game on their schedules.   What's more, Oregon is the "sexy" pick because they have such an explosive offense and because voters are idiots.   They have not delivered on the big stage, really, but everyone seems to give them a pass on that.   Most years, I'm not worried because they other teams ahead of us in the polls are all playing each other eventually, or likely to lose one.   I feel that way about Clemson.  But Oregon doesn't have much in their way, and 'Bama seems likely to land in the title game even with a loss.  

"Woody would have wanted it that way" 

BuckeyeQ6's picture

I think Roby will have a big game this week.  Exhibit A, the 11W Cal opponent breakdown:

His favorite target – Bryce Treggs – is catching more than 10 passes per game.

I don't expect Cal to abandon their favorite target in their pass-heavy offense, and Roby should blanket him most of the game.
Exhibit B:

“Honestly, I think our offense can match up with any defense in the country,” Goff said.

Cal's freshman is overconfident and naive after playing just 2 games and none against a particularly good defense.  He'll expect to be able to beat Roby.

Will in Arizona's picture

Roby plays the near side of the field almost exclusively - they don't play match ups with him.

BuckeyeQ6's picture

Fair enough. My bad on assuming he covers the #1 WR.  I remember reading that now that you say that.  Unfortunately Treggs beat Roby on his TD I think.

pjtobin's picture

I agree that if I knew how to stop a offense that is rolling like Cal's is currently I would be in a different profession too. I think this game will show how good or bad our defense is. I hope to see them stop cal all together. That would shut the talking heads up for sure. If we can get the win then that's great. If we get the win, with a shutout, we won't drop on any polls. IMHO. 

Bury me in my away jersey, with my buckeye blanket. A diehard who died young. Rip dad. 

gobucks96's picture

Gotta agree that the secondary's play with drive the results of the game.. Goat or hero, they'll be tested..

AAStagg's picture

Everybody seems confident Braxton will play Saturday.  I'm not so sure.  He's a running QB with a bad knee and a brace.  I'd go with Guiton.

Keep calm.  It's only a game.

Earle's picture

I'm with you there, Amos.  I don't think we have any trouble on offense with Kenny, and unless Braxton is absolutely 100%, playing him is not worth the risk.

Snarkies gonna snark. 

Will in Arizona's picture

Eh, Terrelle Pryor played plenty of games with a bad knee and a brace.  The games were more meaningful than this one and Pryor appears to be more able to play through injuries, so I could see Braxton sitting out.

CUBS's picture

42-17 Buckeyes...halftime score 21-14 Buckeyes; things settle in the 2nd half, OSU outscores the bears 21-3 the rest of the way. I think you'll see Dontre Wilson have a big game, especially if he gets touches in open space. Cal's defense is suspect to big plays. I think OSU would really have to shoot themselves in the foot defensively to give up anything more than 3 scores. 

jaxbuckeye's picture

I agree.  I think we are going to see a whole lot of Dontre.  I think this could be his coming out party.

fanatibuck's picture

Politics once again interjected against board rules by our MODS. hmmm...........that being said [rest of post deleted by 11W staff - don't confuse cheeky historical metaphors involving long-dead people with politics]


ScarletNGrey01's picture

Not to worry, none of us ... except you apparently ... will.

The will to win is not as important as the will to prepare to win. -- Woody Hayes

johnny11's picture

I think the best way to combat Cal's Tempo is for a nice heavy dose of running between the tackles and to slow our tempo down a little from what it usually is. I would like to see J. Hall and R. Smith dominating the A gap. Then Dontre and Brax/Kenny tearing up the outside when they suck in. The best way to keep a prolific offense from hurting you is to keep them off the field. Go Bucks

lsjSnail's picture

Exactly I expect to see a lot less hurry up in the second half. Just power football, OSU will still strike fast.

ejoceans's picture

We have to come out guns blazing or it will be another drop in the polls for us this week as well. Even with Kenny G at the helm. I don't think the pollsters care one bit that we win big with our back up QB.  They just see TOSU NOT stomping these teams and they immediately think, oh man these guys are over rated big time. I mean people at work don't know a thing about college ball and all they see is the highlights on sc and talk trash on my team.  You have to remember everyone is against us making the NCG so they will do anything to keep us out.  Gotta win convincingly or we will be out(IMOA). Cant go undefeated like last year with all the close games and expect to continue to get votes.

Lets do this Brutus

Poison nuts's picture

Honorable mention goes to Joey Bosa. My man crush on that dude is already at Defcon 3.

I'm currently at Defcon 4.

"Do not pass me, just slow down - I can move right through you" Superchunk - Precision Auto.

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

Lined up next to Spence.

Drool inducing

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

buckguyfan1's picture

78 just crapped his pants.   "help, I need a little help over here"

INTLBUCK's picture

I definitely like Teddy...but what about Lincoln, the president who brought us victory over the "South"?