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  • SPORTS MOMENT: 2003 National Championship game with OSU beating Miami

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Comment 30 Sep 2014

I have to chuckle over this comment ....... fans scream for a more aggressive, press-type of coverage, Ash implements it, three mental (not schematic) errors by young players and the whole defense is crap in your eyes .... Wow !!

Take out the three mistakes and the Bearcats have 131 yards passing and less than 75 yards rushing.  Vonn Bell turns his head (he had decent coverage) and he at least knocks the ball down or picks it off - Powell doesn't bite on the fake slot screen and Gunner has to eat the ball, but instead hits the skinny post where Powell should have been - Apple just got beat off the line, period.  The last one (Apple) is going to happen from time to time when playing press coverage and the safety jumps a short route late in a quarter.  NONE of those TD's had anything to do with scheme or system.  They were a result of players making mental mistakes, being too eager to jump a route or just plain getting beaten by a very good receiver.

What I see very differently from last season (there are no roses on my glasses) is the fact that we have people around the ball in position to at least make a play.  I see that we're not getting chewed up by the infamous screen passes (LB pursuit, even without Shazier) has been much better on those plays.  Finally, I am seeing fewer missed tackles than I've seen in the last three seasons. 

Press coverage is going to result in big plays - in BOTH directions.  Kiel is the best QB we'll face this regular season, with some of the best receivers (when Tubby says it's the best group he's ever coached, that's saying something) in the country. 

So my advice is to move on from the 3 plays you based your opinion on about the defense and take a closer look at the entire body of work that's been done during the off-season.  This is a better defense that's also trying to break in some new talent in the secondary - a little patience will go a long way towards a stellar defense by season's end ...........

Comment 28 Sep 2014

Not even worth a discussion - he'd be throwing away a scholarship which would be more productive if given to a solid offensive or defensive lineman ... Ship has sailed and Chris should begin preparing himself for 4 years of humiliation and frustration .... sorry, but life is all about making the tough decisions (some make better ones than others) .....

Comment 28 Sep 2014

Actually, in this case Grant wasn't deliberately "re-routing" the WR, since he needed to maintain outside leverage on what he assumed would be a block by the WR for the slot screen.  Instead, the WR broke off the "block", turned it into a skinny post where Powell should have been, but had run himself out of position in an effort to get up to the LOS to support on the screen.  That TD was well set up by the Bearcats and Powell was the one who screwed up his assignment.  Such is the price of pushing for an aggressive or attacking style of defense that Ash (and OSU fans) wants to see ..........

Comment 28 Sep 2014

The 4th touchdown by Cincy was a direct result of an overaggressive play by the corner (Grant), LB (Perry) and the real guilty party in the TD, the safety (Powell).  All three bit on the slot screen fake.  Grant locked up the WR at the LOS and then released him inside on the pump fake to the slot by Gunner.  Perry flowed on the look by Gunner and Powell was moving downhill and to the sideline to head off the screen.  As soon as Powell decided to break to the LOS, it was going to be 6 points (Gunner in the post game interview had told a teammate that he was going to throw a TD on that play), because Cincy knew that OSU was selling out to stuff the receiver screens.  So the scheme was sound, but Powell tried to do someone else's job and that's an issue of trust in the secondary.  If Powell stays  at home, Gunner either eats the ball or throws an INT to Powell.

If you're going to jam receivers, you better make sure that you have the personnel to run with them.  On the first Cincy TD, Bell was there and should have broken up or picked off the pass, but he got completely turned around and didn't try to locate the ball (pure rookie mistake and nothing to do with effort or scheme).  Playing aggressive defense leaves a team open for big plays - both ways ....

I'm fine with the defensive effort against one of the best throwing QB;s in college (we won't see one like him in the Big Ten this season), plus a receiving corps that Meyer concedes was the best his team faced since he started coaching at OSU (Tuberville also said it was the best receiving corps he's had on a team he's coached, which is scary).  Other than the three big plays, our defense handled the Bearcat offense all night .........

Comment 28 Sep 2014

Again, looking at the Bearcat's 4th TD - Doran Grant did jam the receiver at the line, but released him inside to try and make the anticipated play on the slot receiver that Gunner faked to .... The outside receiver did a great job of selling "block" on the play, then released to the skinny post where Powell should have been waiting, but who also decided to sell out and jump the short route.  Grant looked like the goat chasing Moore to the end zone, but it was Powell who was sucked into supporting the slot screen.  Nothing to do with coaching, just a blown assignment by Powell and a well set-up play by the Bearcats ....... Was anyone surprised that Gunner was going to throw on our defense ??  Take away those three long TD's and the defense played a great game (Bell blew the first TD (he was there, but got turned around), Eli was simply outrun on the next long TD play and the 4th TD was due to an over-aggressive desire by our defense to stop the slot screen) .....

Like I said, I'm okay with the learning experience against a VERY GOOD QB and as Meyer said before the game, probably the best receiving group OSU has faced since he arrived as HC ......... 

Comment 28 Sep 2014

I had no problem with the defense last night ..... I thought the positives far out-weighed the negatives (three big plays).  Fans have been screaming for more press coverage and aggressive defensive schemes.  The fourth TD by Gunner was set up perfectly by the Bearcats, since we'd been stuffing their slot receiver screen all night.  If you watch the tape, our play side safety, once the slot backed off the line to catch the pass jumped up and to the sideline (Tyvis Powell) while the LB (Perry) flowed to the outside for support.  The corner, Grant, locked up with the outside receiver, but released him to make the play on the slot, but the pass was never thrown to him.  Gunner looked to the slot receiver, all three defenders immediately jumped the route and the wide out ran a skinny post where the safety had vacated.  Perfect execution, taking advantage of our over-aggressive secondary in stopping the short pass.  Grant looked like the goat chasing the receiver from 10 yards back, but it was Powell, the safety, who jumped the route and took himself out of the play. 

Aggressive defensive play is okay, as long as everyone stays with their assignment, but fans should expect that when there's a breakdown, it usually doesn't just result in a first down, but a touchdown ...........  Chalk last nights big plays to some very eager young DB's who will only get better as they get experienced.

By the way, Dontre Wilson's TD catch actually was set up with virtually the same play, with the corner and safety jumping the short route and allowing Wilson to run free down the sideline on a wheel route ..............

Comment 16 Sep 2014

Hold on there, cowboy .... There's a reason why JJ is not in the starting rotation - he may be a big-body, but he's still running with HS strength ... Keep an eye on him during a jet sweep and he gets driven back 5 yards deep into the backfield by a Kent State LB (he almost took out the ball carrier .... He needs time to develop that college-level strength (and he's got the right guy to help him do just that) .... Love his long arms, but needs to work on his feet and overall strength ....  He'll be a player, for sure, but not just yet ....

Comment 13 Sep 2014

Was unable to listen to or watch the game last week, but when you have two missed field goals (a 27 yarder ??), have Corey Smith drop a sure TD (and maybe another) and discount the pick 6 at the end of the game, the score is very close.  Literally sounds like they made all the plays, but OSU didn't catch a break on anything.  I know the O-Line played poorly (defensively out-schemed actually), but I'm not surprised to see that VT is getting humped right now (they drank the Kool-Aid) against a very good QB from EC .....  We'll get better and it's the top 4 teams at the end of the season, not in September, that make the cut for the playoff .....

Comment 13 Sep 2014

You're kidding, right ??  Braxton isn't going to take an NFL snap if he leaves before another season of college ball.  Braxton isn't close to being as good as Troy Smith, who won a Heisman and hardly got a sniff at the NFL.  While Braxton may be able to run like a deer, his passing game is that of an average college QB.  Don't get me wrong, I love Braxton and everything he's done for OSU, but an NFL QB he is not (at least not yet) .... Sorry - JMHO

Comment 01 Sep 2014

Well stated, Silver Bullet 10 - probably the most accurate statement on these boards in a long while ..... Guiton could manage a game, was cool under pressure (Purdue game), threw a decent deep ball and great at spreading the ball around.  Guiton's legs were great (with Braxton's being exceptional) and he knew exactly when to run.  Most importantly, both Guiton and J.T. played the same read option offense in HS, so they were well prepared to run this offense before even setting foot on the OSU campus.  Neither Guiton or Barrett will ever have the "X-Factor" athletic skill set of Braxton, but I prefer a QB who can properly read the defense on an option call and also have the proper "touch" on a pass (which, sadly, Braxton lacks - still throwing the 5 yard curl like it's a 20 yard seam).  The comparison to Troy Smith is bang on (loved that little spin move inside the red zone to avoid a sure sack by J.T. (unfortunately, he ended up throwing the interception with a wide open TE in the middle of the end zone waving).  He's only going to get better ....

Comment 01 Sep 2014

There has to BE a hole to hit it hard and early on, our O-Line was hit and miss with their holes.  More importantly, Rod will get his touches once he learns the door swings both ways (i.e. he blocks as well as he runs the ball - whiffed on a block during a sweep and his man made the tackle for loss) .... When you don't carry the ball, you're usually blocking ....

Comment 31 Aug 2014

For those of you being worried about our defense, let's go to the stats for our past two games against Navy:

  • In 2009, our defense game up 342 yards on our home field to the Midshipmen (only 48 yards less than at yesterdays game). 
  •  Dobbs, in 2009, rushed for 83 yards, compared to just 42 yards for Keenan (who is supposed to be the best QB ever to play at the Naval Academy).
  •  At home, the final score of 31 - 27 was settled when we intercepted a 2 pt. convert and returned it for the safety.  On the road, our offense and defense continued to improve during the course of the game (unlike the collapse in 2009) and covered the 14 point spread.
  •  Pryor was 14 / 21 for 174 yards with 1 TD and 1 INT.   J.T. went 12 / 15 for 226 yards with 2 TDs and 1 INT.  Have to say that J.T. played very well with a struggling O-Line in front of him (although they played a strong final 20 minutes of football).

We knew that Navy was going to hold onto the ball with their offensive system.  Some missed tackles lead to big gains and I agree that Von Bell should be inserted as a started, as didn't miss tackles and was great at wrapping up the ball carrier.  All in all, I think an offense that was breaking in 8 new starters on offense, against a good, aggressive Navy defense, did a very credible job.  The overall positives of this ROAD win, far out-weigh the negative issues, all of which can be addressed and corrected during this week of practice for the Home opener.  VTU will bring a stiffer test for J.T. and company, but with this first game under their belt, I think we'll see a far more confident group on offense and the return of the Silver Bullets on defense .....

Comment 30 Aug 2014

Herman made one bonehead call - running option inside the 5 yard line, when two yards would have given us a first and goal.  What imbecile would run option against arguably the best option team in the country.  Flat out stupidity, period..... Other than that, I thought he called a pretty good game, considering breaking in a kid at QB and 4 new O-Linemen.  With those two TD passes, J.T. should have some more confidence and he'll just get better.  As advertised - very Guitonish .....

Comment 26 Aug 2014

Actually, I figure that every team that J.T. faces will be bringing heat on the first play, just to try and rattle "The Distributor", so I'd be dumping the ball either over the middle to the TE, or swing it to one of the backs on the perimeter (either way, it'll be at least a first down and with some YACs, could be a big gainer .....

Comment 26 Aug 2014

Run back and concede a safety (give Navy a false sense of security with the 2 point lead) .... Then open the flood gates and pump the Midshipmen by 28 points .... I'm sure that's how Urban has drawn it up on the big board .....

Comment 21 Aug 2014

Braxton has elusive qualities as a QB and could launch the deep ball.  Guiton ran the read option much better than Braxton (Braxton sometimes looked like he guessed which option to use and his athleticism would bail him out on many occasions) and also had the short passing game down better than Braxton (better "touch" on the ball).  There is never a substitute for experience, which is where Braxton has it over either Guiton or Barrett.  However, Guiton was not a cripple and neither is Barrett (both good Texas QB's).  I have no doubt that J.T. will surprise both fans and opposing teams with his ability to use his legs.  He also has a great deal of experience (like Guiton had) with the read option offense, so he'll be fine.  He also has a very good short passing game, as reported by the coaches.

All in all, I expect J.T. Barrett to show as much athletic ability as Kenny G. did when he came in, but KG had the advantage of sitting behind Braxton studying, while J.T. has only been around for one season.  I really believe that teams will come after Barrett and try to blitz the hell out of him .... that is, until he cuts them to shreds with screens, dumps to the backs, TE shots across the middle and short crossing routes behind the backers.  He'll be absolutely fine and each game will allow him to grow in confidence, plus his teammates will be putting in that extra effort since Braxton won't be around to bail them out when the game gets tight ....

Comment 14 Aug 2014

Johnny Cochrane isn't getting this guy off ..... The victim never took his hands out of his pockets the entire time, so at no time was he making any threatening gestures to York's buddy.  York cold-cocked the poor SOB while his hands were in his pockets - total punk-ass bitch move and for Hoke to even consider keeping this girlie-boy on the team speaks volumes .... What a gutless move by both York and Hoke (nice touch by York to work on his 40 once he delivered the punch) .... Wow !!!!!

Comment 14 Aug 2014

While we're only looking at snippets of practice, I'm not so concerned with the secondary, as they seemed all around the ball or right on top of the receivers.  I'm more concerned with the QB and WR play watching this short video.  Big Decker looks pretty comfortable settling in at LT, but there was one OL that got caught leaning on a pass rusher instead of sitting down and the defender pulled on him, then cut inside leaving him grabbing at air.

Can't wait for the 30th to see what we really have this season.  One thing I'll bet - our defense will be back to the Silver Bullet style and my hope is that the offense can keep pace with last season, but I'm of the opinion that by loosing 4 OL starters and El Guapo, we won't be as dynamic an offense as last season - hope I'm wrong .... 

Comment 09 Aug 2014

Let's try to remember that Ash is only part of the defensive equation, so I'm not sure you can label him a Dantonio or Heacock .... He was brought in to shore up the back end of the defense, which is something that Withers wasn't able to do.  Luke Fickell is the other half of the defensive equation and obviously, the Fickell / Withers combination didn't work very well (again, we don't know if there was conflict between those two when dreaming up their game plans, but, Withers is gone and Luke is still here, so Urban must have drawn his own conclusions) .... I believe that Fickell / Ash will be the much better combination and certainly Ash's approach to a more aggressive secondary will suit Coach Coombs (who isn't exactly a sit-on-your-hands type of coach) .... One thing we should expect from the defense - big plays (some good and some not so good).  Anytime you play pressure defense from the secondary, you risk giving up the big play when there's a breakdown by an individual.  Should be exciting this season !!