Glad to see him make the play too. But Devin Smith seems to always try catching the ball with his body instead of his hands. Earlier in the game he let a ball bounce off his shoulder pads on a sure td pass from Barrett. Even on the one he caught he doesn't catch with his hands. Didnt matter much against Kent state, but against Sparty that could have been a game changer. He's a senior he should have better technique than that by now.
IMO it seems that the linebacker kids coming in do the best when they get on field early in their career and before Luke Fickel gets in their heads and convinces them that they don't know anything about the linebacker position. Fickel tried to avoid playing Ryan Shazier early and had other upper classmen starting ahead him most of season. Finally he really had no choice but to play him. When Shazier got on the field it really made you wonder why he didn't play sooner. I glad that Kwon has gotten on the field before Fickel could screw him up make him play without confidence. I believe that is what has happened to Curtis Grant. He came in teeming with confidence and the number #1 rated linebacker in country and then after spending some significant time with Fickell all we heard for years until now is that Curtis Grant doesn't have any confidence to play the position. That just doesn't make any sense. If he had been developed properly he should have been gaining more and more confidence over the years. I'm glad to see Urban call for Kwon to be on the field early in his career, we all have seen what he can do now and Fickell has no excuse for not playing this kid.
Regarding the offense, I thought OSU was supposed to go no huddle line up, look over the defense and then before the snap look to the sidelines and make sure they have the right play called. Then either change it or go ahead and run it. VT tipped their hand early when they were going to bring pressure. They basically brought pressure to the point it was predictable. Why the coaches couldn't help JT out of those situations is a mystery. Everyone saw the pressure coming from VT. I cannot believe OSU didn't have a throw to the flat or some other short or "hot routes" to get the ball out quick and let the playmakers get yac.
Appreciate your providing that top picture of offense before the snap. Looking at that, I don't see why they didn't try running the ball more, because in the picture VT is way off balance on the strongside, OSU had a clear numbers advantage on the weakside. Even when Dontre Wilson goes in motion no defensive player follows him to the weakside. I don't see why OSU didn't run the zone read to the weakside. In that case, Barrett takes his read off of the unblocked weakside DE/LB labeled defender#1 in the picture giving OSU another additional blocker. If the defender #1 crashes down toward the RB, then Barrett keeps it and only has to beat one cornerback that is already being blocked by the OSU wr, also he had Dontre Wilson on that side to get down field and help block the safety, if defender #1 expands and plays contain then Barrett gives to the RB. Because the OSU right tackle is not blocking the weakside defender #1 he now is available to help briefly double team the defender #2 and then he moves to the second level to hit the linebacker defender #9. It is a simple play that was a staple for the OSU offense last year. Did they forget how to run it? It is the same offensive scheme that Barrett ran in high school and he was good at it. Its the same scheme that the Oregon Ducks utilize also. They are hoping that the defense mistakenly overloads one side or starts cheating to one side like VT was doing and then they exploit them by simply running their play to the opposite side where there is a numbers advantage for the offense. Also, which is another huge benefit, the offense picks up an additional blocker by leaving the defensive end unblocked giving an even further numbers advantage, they use the additional blocker to help briefly double team the tackle and secure the line of scrimmage and then move him to the second level to hit the linebacker. This situation is so obvious and is what the whole scheme of the zone read is based on, if the defense overloads to one side, you run the ball the opposite direction. I think there were alot of missed opportunities to exploit the defense in the run game, our offensive coordinator just went completely brain dead. In the pictue above, there is a clear numbers advantage to the weakside. Everbody needs to remember, although it didn't seem like it at times, VT only had 11 players on the field like OSU. If the VT defense purposely or mistakenly loads up on one side then the offense has a numbers advantage to the opposite side and they just need to recognize it at the line of scrimmage and change the playside and do that everytime the defense is aligned that way. In this case VT gave OSU a numbers advantage even before the snap of the ball let alone that fact if we run the zone read the offense picks up an additional blocker. That is on the coaches to help young Barrett and Boren and the RB's understand what they need to be looking for at the line of scrimmage. They all need to help each other see the obvious. Go Bucks!
They certainly could have used 4 linebackers against Navy and had Kwon in there. They sure didn't need 4 dbs in that game, because Navy didn't even WANT to throw the football. They won at this point that is all that matters. Go bucks!
Genuis! We didn't need 4 dbs. Especially since you had 2 walkout linebackers that have some cover skills. Why didn't the guys being paid $millions come up with that idea or adjust to that during the game. That would have made a huge difference in stopping the run and getting Kwon on the field.
JOSH SWEAT!!!. Defense wins championships. The question doesn't really make any sense, because neither player has anything to do with each as far as their position goes, one plays offense and the other defense. Also you statement about it not looking too great doesn't make any sense either, Sweat just set an official visit to Ohio State and Kirk has NOT committed to any school. Fixed it.
All this happening with Braxton and the high expectations that may or may not be realized now just prove the ancient words to be true "“that the swift do not have the race, nor the mighty ones the battle.....Because time and unforeseen occurrence befall them all"
I say we have to just grin and barrett this year. Go Bucks!
I'm not as worried about losing Braxton until we get to the Big Ten Conference schedule if that happened. Until he comes back we would just have to play extra solid on defense and strong zone read game on offense. JT Barrett knows the zone read. He's not Braxton, but looks mobile enough to keep a defense off balance. There are alot of other playmakers now on this offense, they would have to step up.
Lets face it, he was not going to ever sniff the 2 deep with the talent that we have coming in with Urban. He was a recruit during the Luke Fickel debacle I believe. In the end I think Dr Epitropoulos will get the last laugh. Go bucks!