Good points, 0710, and I'm right there with you. If you go back and read the history of Coach Hayes' tenure, there are more than a few games where one could safely assume a slightly more "modern" approach to the game would have bagged a victory (and probably more titles), but it's important to remember that the game is more often than not evolutionary rather than revolutionary.
Paul Brown proved that Ohio State could win at the highest level. Woody established Ohio State as a perennial football powerhouse who belonged in the same conversation as giants like Alabama, and made The Rivalry truly a rivalry instead of just a longstanding grudge. John Cooper turned Ohio State into a national entity rather than just a regional concern in terms of recruiting, and Jim Tressel restored the balance in The Force that was lacking during Coopers reign of futility in The Game.
Each of those frontmen had an identity that was wholly their own, and each was, in their own way, the right man at the right time for the program. Ohio State sorely needed Jim Tressel to call his own shot in The Rivalry, and deliver on that promise, as he did in spades. Ohio State needed Jim Tressel to prove that we were not a national also-ran in the national title conversation, and that we could win big games consistently. Ohio State needed Jim Tressel to build a wall around the state and make sure that our homegrown talent stayed home more often than not. He was both the coach we needed, and the coach we deserved.
And in fairness to the previous poster's comment, Urban Meyer was the guy we needed when his number came up. Tressel's offensive playbook was more Woody Hayes than was Cooper's, and the game has clearly evolved into this spread-to-run Urban Meyer/Chip Kelley style offensive mindset. Defense still wins championships, and Meyer is the guy who knows how not only to create the most consistently effective and explosive offense in the game, he also knows how to defend against it with equal effectiveness (hi there, Oregon, nice to see you).
Jim Tressel will forever be one of my favorite Buckeyes. Without Jim Tressel, we may not have been in position to bag Urban Meyer when we did, and we may still only be a 6-natty program instead of the reigning, defending, undisputed, 8-time world heavyweight champions of the world.