buckeye phi's picture

buckeye phi

from Atlanta

Member since 21 August 2014 | Blog


  • SPORTS MOMENT: Ohio State National Championships
  • NFL TEAM: Miami Dolphins

Recent Activity

Comment 21 hours ago

Let's keep in mind, UFM tried to go with a more pro-style quarterback the first half of the season.  As we all know now, it didn't work very well. 

A lot of people blamed Cardale - some said it was because there was no Devin Smith this year - still others blamed Coach Beck (and even UFM).  Though it's become more pronounced in recent weeks (against elite defensive fronts) - there have been some issues with pass protection all season as well. 

It may have been all of the above.  As several have already mentioned - contrary to the good ol' days (especially, in the age of the spread,) you now often have to establish at least some threat of a passing attack in order to run effectively. 

With the insane talent we have at virtually every skill position, it's remarkable that the passing game has been bad as it's been.  We're currently ranked 100th nationally in passing offense, according to ncaa statistics. 

I'm not so sure the pro-style-ish (Cardale) experiment will be tabled for long, however.  I noticed that when JT was suspended, Joe Burrow was moved up the depth chart - behind Cardale and Braxton (who apparently will not throw at all this season) - but ahead of Stephen Collier.

After Cardale, the only qb on the roster with classic pro-style characteristics (tall with a big arm - and accurate) is Joe.  If the struggles in the passing game continue in to next season, I wouldn't be too surprised to see more of Burrow a whole lot sooner than some may think -

Comment 22 hours ago

From a match-up perspective, Penn State may have a chance.  Michigan State is very weak at safety.  For whatever reason, we only attempted to expose that weakness a couple of times in our game. 

Say what you want about Hackenberg - but he is particularly good with the intermediate to long pass.  If he can get just a little bit of time, he may be able to hit some big plays down field. 

Defensively, Penn State's front four is as good as any in the country.  There's also the possibility that Michigan State might be suffering from a bit of a hangover following one of the biggest victories in program history just the week before.

Of course, we have to take care of business with the skunkweasels first, in any case -

Comment 24 Nov 2015

"The quarterback is a product of those around him" - Urban Meyer

It was never all on Cardale - just like it shouldn't all be on JT now.  For instance, JT wasn't the one who whiffed on the block that forced him to hurry his throw to a wide-open Braxton.  Hit on that play - and we probably would have won -

Comment 24 Nov 2015

It wasn't a hurricane, for goodness sake.  We've had better efforts with the passing game in worse conditions than that in the past.  I think UFM knows that -

Even though we disagree, I'm going to upvote your comment, incidentally.  You didn't deserve a dv for a differing point of view -

Comment 24 Nov 2015

I would say it's a general lack of focus throughout the program - that might make a little sense for a defending national championship team.  But that doesn't fly because the defense has played well most of the time. 

So why the struggles on the offensive side only?  Like a lot of 11wers, I'm not sold on Beck either.  But it's a little unfair to lay this all at his feet.  I don't believe for a second that he goes rogue on UFM's game plan on Saturdays and starts calling plays that weren't agreed upon in offensive meetings/practices during the week.

However, the bottom line is - we have an offense that is stocked with talent and tremendous speed - yet, for some reason, we're unable to exploit it consistently.  It's very frustrating

Comment 24 Nov 2015

Hopefully, UFM can get the players to re-focus after that loss.  It's probably a good thing that The Game is coming immediately after the Michigan State debacle.  It shouldn't ever be too difficult for any Ohio State team to get psyched up for Michigan.

Of course, there are a different set of match-up difficulties - and opportunities - in this one.  For instance, The Silver Bullets shoud be able to limit the Wolverines' 72nd (nationally) ranked offense significantly. 

But unlike the Spartans, Michigan's defensive backfield is quite sound.  If fact, the Wolverines are almost perfectly balanced defensively - ranking 4th vs the run and 4th vs the pass.

Given our mysterious issues passing the ball - currently ranking100th in passing offense, it could be quite the defensive struggle this Saturday -

Comment 24 Nov 2015

Great article, Michael - unfortuntely.  It's pretty much the same thing I was screaming at the TV Saturday.  Michigan State was starting two freshmen at Safety - that's a big part of the reason their pass defense was ranked as poorly as it was (their front seven is, of couse, quite good). 

I was shocked that we did not go after those safeties early and often.  I still haven't heard a good reason why we decided not to "take what the defense was giving us".  The missed opportunity downfield with Braxton (vs a safety) should have prompted more similar attempts - not fewer. 

As noted, Michigan presents a new set of challenges - their defensive backfield is pretty good.  They're tough up front, too - but not as tough as Michigan State was, in my opinion.  It may not be a popular point of view right now - but this may be the week to give 'em a steady dose of our ground game - with the occasional attempt downfield - to keep them honest -

Comment 23 Nov 2015

With all the great openings out there - it's agreed, Ash is probably gone.  UFM and Ash probably know of some up-and-coming defensive coach who'll be able to step in and run a similar scheme, though -

Comment 23 Nov 2015

With nothing to lose, I have a feeling our guys come out firing on all cylinders offensively this Saturday.  Our defense is already playing pretty well for the most part. 

Michigan's offense is no better than Michigan State's - so I think if we're able to put up more than 17 points this week, we should be able to win. 

In order to do that we must prove we can throw the ball effectively, however.  UM's defense is too good to try the one-dimensional approach with - again -

Comment 23 Nov 2015

UFM has had great success over the years with quarterbacks who can run effectively.  The comments above about improving the numbers with a running qb are valid, of course. 

Sometimes it's a called run but usually, it's an option to keep or pitch in our offense.  Of course, when you're being beaten on the line - and the defense is loading the box - no running attack is going to work. 

In my opinion, we should have gone more to the passing game.  Michigan State was starting two freshmen at safety.  We should have gone after them early and often.  And if the Slobs couldn't give JT time, we should have gone to more roll-outs and/or some max-protect plays. 

The Spartans had one glaring weakness defensively - and for whatever reason, we didn't attack it consistently -

Comment 23 Nov 2015

What do you mean by this?

 et tu Buckeye Phi? 

I'm not being disloyal to my team by being realistic.  Certainly you're not suggesting than anything short of a B1G championship and a shot at a national championmship is anything less than a devastating disappointment for this team. 

Of course the coaches and the players will put everything in to prepping for UM.  That was going to happen regardless of the outcome vs MSU. 

I referred to the fact that we could still savage something out of the season with big wins over UM and our bowl opponent.  But even at 12-1 - being runners-up in the B1G East was not one of this team's goals. 

Surely, you'd agree that we'd better do a better job of taking what the defense is giving us this saturday -

Comment 23 Nov 2015

The plays that will be emphasized and tweaked for a given opponent are determined during the week.  This is the case for pretty much every football team at virtually any level past pee wee. 

All of the offensive coaches (but especially, UFM, Warinner and Beck) contribute to narrowing it down to a list of options - depending on down, distance, field position, etc.  If adjustments are made as the game progresses, UFM has at least signed off on them - if they weren't his adjustments in the first place. 

The narrative that Beck is deciding to call any play he wants on some wild, unsupported whim is based on uninformed supposition.  For whatever reason, UFM didn't consistently attack those freshman safeties on Saturday.  Anything that fundamental to our gameplan wasn't Beck's decision.

Think about it logically.  How long do you think UFM would let Beck call plays that were contrary to what they agreed upon in all the meetings they had during the week?  It's a ludicrous scenario if you give it any thought at all.

That doesn't mean I think Beck is doing a good job coaching our quarterbacks, however.  That is his responsibility - and while I'm sure UFM is involved with that, too - he can't spend the same kind of daily time with them that Beck does -

Comment 23 Nov 2015

Yep.  There was a bomb on saturday alright.  Maybe a "dud" would be a better description -

Comment 23 Nov 2015

You mean that film wasn't burned immediately? 

I don't think even our beloved Kyle will be able to explain why we didn't consistently go after one of the worst defensive backfields Sparty has had for years -

Comment 23 Nov 2015

Not gonna beat many good teams with 46 passing yards.  Michigan State had a glaring weakenss in it's defensive backfield and we couldn't or wouldn't take advantage of it -

Comment 23 Nov 2015

If we cant find a way to get the passing game going, it'd be silly to think the outcome this Saturday will be much different that it was two days ago.  Michigan's defense is actually better than Michigan State's. 

Why would anyone think the same one-dimensional offensive approach would suddenly work now?  Unlike some of the awful defenses we've faced earlier this season, the Wolverines are for real on that side of the ball.  (I think they're flawed offensively, however) 

By the way, I'm a little confused by some of the above comments suggesting that there's 'a lot of football left to be played'.  The loss to Michigan State means we probably now have only two games left.  If we had won, it might have been four.  I'm not a math major, but I believe that's less football left to be played - by about half. 

Face it.  It's very likely this team will only have two games left to redeem itself after such a devastating loss.  Of course, that sucks - but it's also reality.  The best we can realistically hope for at this point is a strong showing in The Game - and then again in a major bowl. 

Naturally, we'll all be rooting for a near-miraculous turn of events - propelling us back in to the play-off picture.  But realistically, there are only two games left for us to salvage what we can from what has abruptly tuned in to a somewhat disappointing season.  It's time to face the facts.  It may have only been one last second, three-point loss.  But on top of that, it was a bad showing - at a bad time -