I hope they turn it around, too. But let's not get all excited until we see them play a team with a pulse. Fact is, Illinois is worse than OSU. PSU is too. As bad as OSU has been, they have to beat those two. Let's talk about a resurrection after Wisconsin and Iowa.
The refs did their job correctly? That is a textbook definition of CYA. The refs let the whole damn thing get out of hand.
This team has a long way to go to pass mediocre. Offense is stagnant. Q can't hit a shot and seems to be in the dog house. He's also very slow, although he's rebounding okay. We have no idea if Craft, after all his work in the off-season, can hit a jumper. He seems to be afraid to even try. Smith Jr. is his usual self -- pretty much of a non-entity. Thompson can't hit a jumper. Foul-shooting is just atrocious. D is adequate, but a lot of that can be attributed to poor shooting by the other team, not great D. Shannon Scott and Amir seem to be the only two players who have significantly improved from last year. That might get you to top 4 in the BIG, and maybe, maybe Sweet 16 in the tourney if they come around. But I've definitely got low expectations for this group. When the b-ball team can barely match the offense of the football team, you know you're in for a long season.
They really misspelled "Fighting" on their cups?
What's an FAU? First rule of journalism -- spell out acronyms.
Nice win, but the pre-season Kool-aid and the reality are not matching up. Good thing we got some cupcakes to start the season. If OSU were Georgia, for example, no doubt the Bucks would be 0-2. OSU basically played to a tie in the second half, after dominating in the first half. Urb continues to preach not letting up, yet, they continue to let up. I do not have the same optimism some do that this team will be able to turn it up a notch when they feel like it. Perhaps, as my friend said, the team has ADHD.
There seemed to be little to no push on the majority of pass plays. Maybe the flashbacks to the Silver Bullets defense are clouding my judgment. But where are these unblockable studs we supposedly have on the D-Line? Apparently, they are only unblockable by our O-Line. If that's the case with San Diego, what's going to happen when they hit real linemen, like Wisconsin's? (Though, I will concede Bennett is gonna be a load.)
Pass coverage was better, but still not top notch, even with Roby and Barnett. Will be interesting next week when Cal throws 50+ passes, especially if the pass rush doesn't improve.
And I swear I saw the ghost of Jim Bollman in the press box. Running Jordan Hall up the middle time after time is so Dave. Still can't pull off a bubble screen. Then having your QB carry the ball into traffic near the goal line, when you allegedly have such a multitude of weapons, just seems dumb. I assume things will improve if Carlos Hyde proves himself on the punt team and gets to carry the ball eventually. But I cannot see this being an NC team with Jordan Hall as your number one tailback. Kudos to Kenny, though.
And how many times did receivers run routes one to two yards short of where they needed to be to get a first down? Are they really teaching that?
Special teams, and I'm thinking kickoff coverage, still spotty. Hopefully, Carlos Hyde can solve that problem, too, when he comes back.
That's my Cranky Buckeye Fan rundown.
But why did they do the 2-point conversions last week? Urb said it was to give teams something to think about, something they'd have to spend time game-planning about. Why is that any different from opening up the offense? Somehow, there is still a residue of Tressell and Bollman on this team. Play just well enough to win, and then go into a shell. That's not what Meyer promised.
I'm no doctor, but ACL, MCL, LCL and meniscus -- this sounds like a Willis McGahee type injury. What are the chances of a full recovery?
I must admit, despite his fine day, I'm disappointed that Jordan Hall is the number one running back. He's Antonio Pittman light. Hope he goes back to H-Back next game. There's too much talent to keep bottled up on the bench, and I don't think it was an accident that Dunn didn't get a single carry. Don't see how this situation continues going into next year. One, if not two, of the running backs will be transferring. Count on it.
A brilliant, hilarious piece. There were obviously some folks with a lot of time on their hands and just a little bit of information, which resulted in the avalanche of bloviation that is the Gordon Gee story. Add in the need to get online hits, and this is the result -- a complete and utter waste of Internet print. What Mr. Gee said could offend some, but really, apologizing to Bert Bielema? Surprised Mr. Gee didn't opt for suicide instead. I was not really offended by anything he said, not because I'm an Ohio State fan, but because I'm a Notre Dame-hating, ex-Catholic, who realizes the SEC is a scum-sucking vortex of corruption (and oversigning), and that the state of Kentucky is not a hotbed of scholarship. I was highly in favor of Woody, Tressel and Pryor leaving when they did, just like many of our blindly loyal fans. As a former journalist for 25 years, I normally would have been defending my brethren in the press, but this time, you nailed the lazy bastards masquerading as the morality police. I thoroughly enjoyed the folks who populated the sports department where I worked, but geezus, the alcoholic, cocaine-fueled gamblers who made up our sports department were the last folks to be holding others accountable. Same goes for these blowhards.
Your friendly neighborhood Yiddish teacher
New Mexico has a good big in the middle. Otherwise, similar to OSU. They play tough D and while offense is spotty at times, they've scored enough to win. They have one excellent outside shooter in Tony Snell and other guys who can fill it up if left open. A fairly athletic team. Living in New Mexico, I should know more about them. But am too busy following the Bucks to notice.
Can the Bucks play well, or great, 6 games in a row in the tourney? I think that is the overriding question. The team has had a few awesome games, mixed with real stinkers. The notion that a different player (along with Thomas) will step up to score for each of those six games is really not a winning scenario, no matter how well the defense plays.
At this point in the season, it looks like a streak hinges on Craft's ability to keep scoring at a decent pace and the ability of he and Scott to play together and create havoc on defense. We know now that Lenzelle comes and goes on offense, as does Thompson, Ross, etc. and that Rav and Williams could either play out of their minds on D or just disappear.
Love to see more ADV. He and Scott always bring energy into the game when they come in, something which can't be said for say, LZIII. I think his defense will get better (hey, he's already blocked more shots this season than Lenzelle) and the energy and 3-point threat will help the team in the long-run. He could easily steal minutes in different line-ups from Craft, Lenzelle and even Slam, who are to put it nicely, inconsistent as hell on offense. In fact, Lenzelle's 11 minutes last game seems just about right. And as for ADV getting broad-sided on a screen, that's as much the fault of his fellow defenders not calling out the screens as it is him running into them. I can't hear what they're saying on the floor, but it seems they rarely let each other know when a screen is coming.
I was very happy to see the Lenzelle only played 11 minutes tonight. He has played himself out of a starting position and it's time for Q and Scott to start eating up his minutes. He'll be a great 7th man off the bench, although at this point, I'd rather see ADV.
Not a shocker. I thought he was getting a little too much hype prior to the season, and while he played well, there were times when the interior line was just chewed up. He disappeared. I wish him well, but I fear he is another mediocre ex-Buck in the pros.
Seriously, you're singling out Thomas for bad defense? Did you watch the other four slugs on the floor? LS Jr. couldn't guard my grandmother and I'll never know why he gets minutes against good teams. Thompson, average at best. Amir, useless, especially when he's playing 10 minutes a game. Craft, gives a lot of effort, but when you're that bad on offense, it's about the only reason he can justify being on the court. And it's just lousy team defense. Hard to tell from watching on TV, but it doesn't seem that anyone ever calls out picks on defense. I learned to do that on my grade school team. No cohesion whatsoever. The defense has been exposed in the last few weeks as being pretty average. Subtract the numbers from the 10 patsies they played before the league play started, I'd bet the numbers wouldn't be all that exciting.
And it's not Thomas' fault the other guys can't hit a freaking open shot. They're just bad shooters, and combine that with taking bad shots, and you get what happened today. I applaud Thomas for still showing up and shooting the lights out when the rest of the team is afraid to shoot. I feel sorry for him that he didn't go pro last year. Playing with this team could drop him out of the first round.
Disappointing effort. Still wondering why Smith gets as many minutes as he does. It's become obvious he can't produce against good teams, let alone Indiana. Didn't stop anyone on defense. Glad Thompson only got 20 minutes today. That's probably more than he deserves. Thomas forced more shots than normal, but can't really complain about him. He's a baller. Otherwise, not much to say. They were outclassed in every way. At no point did they appear to have a chance to win this one. They're vaunted defense really doesn't look that good against teams that have a clue. It's actually reverting to being pretty average.
Yeah, he was on a mission from God.:) But agree, anybody who thinks he worked himself back into shape with no extraordinary help is in serious denial.
And love to see Alex Boone pancake Ray Lewis' fat ass a few times.
true. Not sure what schedule I was looking at. :) Either way, they need to start shaking things up.
I know this is heresy, but Scott should be starting over Craft. The drop off in defense and scoring is minimal, but the team flows much better offensively when he's in there and that's the key to this team's success. Craft does not like to push the ball as much as Scott does, and Scott can get to the rim more often than Craft. I don't like Scott and Craft on the floor at the same time, either. They get in this bad habit of passing the ball around the perimeter for 25 seconds. Then again, I would prefer those two over having Smith on the floor. He's regressed badly. Does not do much except wait around to pop the occasional 3. Yeah, he gets a few bounds now and then, against less talented teams. But he often makes bad passes, (except for the Harlem Globetrotter weave pass, he's got that down pat) rarely drives to the hoop and is so-so on defense, i.e., not so good that it would hurt to sit him. He seems to wait to pick his spots, except there's apparently only 1 or 2 spots a game for him. He's just taking up space.
Starting lineup I'd like to see: Scott, Thomas, Ross, Williams and Ravenel, with Smith, Craft and Thompson coming off the bench. Get the offense going first. If an opponent is getting hot, bring Craft or Thompson in early to shut them down. You play Ross and Williams for the experience they will need to have by post-season. Williams can focus on shot-blocking, with Thomas and Ravenel to handle rebounding. It's not perfect, but there is no perfect line-up for this team.
They have a string of four relatively easy games. Now's the time to experiment a little.
Can't really blame Scott for the lousy shot. My question is, why did Matta have Thomas, the absolutely unqualified best shooter on the team, throwing the ball in, then running up behind the play? Seriously, Thomas should have been standing at the three point line, if nothing else, as a freaking decoy. Either way, he's in position to get a pass from Scott coming down the floor, or to take two defenders and leave Scott someone to pass to. Just an unbelievably bad play. Gotta put this one on Matta.
Hate to say it, but it seems obvious to me that Craft has hit a plateau. I don't want to say ceiling yet, but you've got to start wondering. His shot, like everyone else on the team except Thomas, is inconsistent as hell. I can see Scott emerging as the starting point guard by the end of the season. Defensively Scott's picking it up and again, his offense is no worse than Craft's at this point and probably better. I think he has a quicker move to the basket than Craft, which is about the only thing that is going to open up the half-court offense -- drive and dish. I also wonder about Craft's decision making. Seems to be pressing to make plays to make up for lack of offense, like fouling Withey under the basket. WTH. And the turnover trying to pass it through traffic in the middle of the lane, resulting in a fastbreak bucket for Kansas.
That said, there are a lot of problems as noted in the article. Thomas is the only shooter you can trust on this team, and even he missed wide open shots. The defensive breakdowns when Kansas had the ball out under its own basket were just inexcusable. Half court offense just horrible. And very little attempt to try to push the action after that 14-0 run in the first half. Granted, Kansas got back quickly most of the time, but Craft seemed very content to walk the ball up after that. Again, with their half court offense being as bad as it is, doesn't seem like a good strategy. At least force Kansas to stop you before you settle for half court set.
Finally, b-ball IQ is down on this team as others have noted. One example -- typically, at the end of games, if you want to save time on the clock, you roll the ball down the court hoping it will make it to half court before your player has to pick it up. Right? I don't know what OSU was doing at the end of the game, but at least twice, the in-bounds guy rolled it out just to the foul line, where Scott had to pick it up and go. How the hell does that save you time if you still have 3/4 of the length of the court to go? Nit-picky, I know, but just going to the point that this maybe isn't the savviest group Thad has ever had.