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Member since 01 September 2010 | Blog

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Comment 22 Jan 2015

Along these lines, interesting follow-up to this nice article might be to speculate about players most likely to break out next year, particularly those filling holes of departing seniors.  Wondering what the new landscape will be now, and what the buzz has been from practices about guys expected to shine in future, including redshirts from this year.  Thanks

Comment 21 Jan 2015

Good question.  What, after all, did the NCAA even do to UNC or has that not reached penalty phase?  What was uncovered was pretty stunning, about as sanction worthy as I would think violations of the NCAA sprit can get.  It wasn't slimy outside boosters, but a significant part of the university itself doing the dirty deeds.

Comment 14 Jan 2015

Remember the Indiana game in Urban's first season?  Or perhaps even the end of the first half of this game?  Urban doesn't.  We were up several scores at IU, tried to salt it away, but they hustled and got the ball to fast guys in space and just like that they were dangerously close to recovering an onside kick down only 6.  End of first half of NC game safe enough to take a knee, but Oregon thought they could score with even a few seconds left.

Urban is a great coach because he remembers these kinds of things, and he apparently had much more respect for Oregon than Oregon fans or sportswriters do.

Comment 19 Nov 2014

Win out and there is no way we're not in it.  No one will want to see an SEC rematch with us sitting on the outside, and TCU won't have the opportunity to look as impressive if we finish the job.  I'm far more confident of that than of us actually winning out, I think Wiscy will give us a real game.  If the current top 6 win out, an Alabama, FSU, Oregon, OSU final four would be the obviously great playoff that everyone wants.

Comment 17 Nov 2014

Starting to wonder if this is part of Pelini's problem.  Teams take on the personality of their coaches.  Both Kelly and Pelini can go really apeshit when things foul up.  Have wondered if that causes their players to lose focus and confidence.  Urban can get mad, but conveys an attitude of keep your cool - bad things will happen, learn from it, fix it, and go win the next play.  Maybe reading too much into it, but seems Urban and Tress were very good at that.

Comment 28 Oct 2014

Agreed, QB keep is our well-known panic call, and it often works - especially with Brax - but really exposes QBs to hits.  Called QB draws are most effective when there is doubt about where ball is going.  But if they know our QB is keeping, less so.  Those last 3 runs of the first half seemed kind of pointless and dangerous.  Went more wildcat and Cardale in 2nd half maybe due to JT's knee, but probably good idea regardless. 

Comment 27 Oct 2014

Very good performance, especially since I thought PSU's pass protection on the whole was not bad (except for the last play of course).  They picked up various blitzes and generally gave Hack time to throw, but he rarely could find anyone open (even their TD was covered).   Several of the sacks and much of the pressure he felt throughout came from great coverage.  Against a QB who can really pass, that's a great development.

Comment 23 Oct 2014

I like our defense much more this year and they had trouble with it last year.  On the other hand, while our O may be "as good" this year it is different and it struck me PSU was particularly flustered by Brax.  With supposedly better D this year, will be interesting to see how our more conventional offense does.  If PSU's D is good as advertised, will be good for our O to tough through some adversity prior to MSU game.  Even so, I do think our hurry-up and their lack of depth will end this by 3rd Q at worst. 

Comment 21 Oct 2014

Urban has been calling out the 2nd string DL for that drop-off.  Is it a matter of young guys not "getting it" yet, less than stellar effort, or a talent/skill problem with this group?

thanks, great stuff as always.

Comment 20 Oct 2014

I can only guess Urban took issue with the passes that were thrown late/behind.  Those are dangerous, but can't figure what else he didn't like about JT's game.  Also, can someone help with the meaning of the "checkers" comment?  thanks

Comment 24 Jul 2014

This stuff was generally known when I was in school.  That was a long time ago, when no one cared much about frat hazing.  Frankly I'd assumed it had been cleaned up by now.  At best its embarrassingly infantile (yeah, I know, college kids) but at worst genuine harassment that grown-ups in charge should be stopping.   Good thing that it finally is getting cleaned up. 

I do wonder why now, though, as it was never really a secret and I can't imagine this is the first parent ever to complain. Some are suggesting the new president, or new regs.  Perhaps, but strikes me its due to the stunning worldwide popularity the band achieved the past few years.  The band is way more than our own OSU thing now.  Its really become an important part of the University's public image. 

Comment 14 Jun 2014

Great points, especially about what has made college football truly special, particularly up north and at OSU.  Its not just lineage of great football, but the now almost old-world traditions and how they reinforce emotional ties to our schools and states.  These are kind of getting lost as the programs seem increasingly tempted to create an NFL experience, despite claiming they are not pro teams.

Can't speak for that team up north, but think how important TBDBITL, The Ramp, Skull Session, and post game Carmen are to the game day experience.  Where do you even see that kind of thing anymore, except Ohio Stadium?  I do agree the crap schedules and rising prices are the biggest problem, but schools that genuinely try to embrace their students and communities, making them feel loved, will still do fine I think.  Props to Urban for doing things like inviting students in to observe practice (love seeing them trying to kick field goals with all the students around).  Being a student (and alumni) should get you special access and lower prices, its our school and our team after all.  Programs keep that in mind and they'll do well.  

Comment 15 Apr 2014

Great stuff, Ross, thanks.  I've read that part of the solution this year was to simplify things, thereby clarifying assignments and enabling guys to trigger more quickly.  I know they weren't facing the A team offense, but from your watch of the game, did it look like they were getting more of the desired execution they seek?


Comment 10 Apr 2014

Very interesting story.  Easy to imagine there would be those willing to do this in Columbus.  But I kind of think the culture is different enough that there are at least a few people around who would know about it, think it wrong, and make a call.  Of course minimizing the evidence is the key.  This explains why SEC-types just thought OSU was being stupid by self-reporting things with actual evidence trails.  To the extent it happens in Ohio I don't think it is condoned at all by our University or athletic staff, which is apparently very different than in the SEC.  

Comment 26 Mar 2014

Brax may not improve tremendously, but think how much easier his life can be if the defense finally gets it together.  Even with his limitations last year they scored a ton.  If we can get back to holding most teams to under 20 points a game, its huge.

Comment 21 Mar 2014

Absolutely, there always comes the time to move on and make your mark in more important ways.  And he surely will.  Critics dislike him for how popular he has become despite not being as gifted or personally dominant as, say, a Michael Jordan.  He's unusually popular because he's an unusually tough player and extremely admirable young man.  The latter trait is very much a part of the former.  He plays the game with ultimate respect and does honor to his family and school.  I wish they'd go back to letting college players make up the Olympic team, how cool would it be to see him wearing the USA and serving up 20 assists a game to teammates who can really score.  He's no Michael Jordan.  Then again, MJ is no Aaron Craft.

Comment 20 Mar 2014

This article is on the money about Amir.  I've often wondered if he actually likes to play the game.  Don't mean that as an insult, and feel bad about the many harsh comments that are coming his way.  But he's kind of the opposite of the limited skill player who tries to make up for it with effort and love for the game (stark contrast to Craft).  Don't think Amir is a bad kid, or that he wants to let down his teammates, but basketball just seems like a job to him that he's never enjoyed. 

As for Craft, would we have even been competitive in this or many other games without him?  He's not perfect, but his mistakes come mostly from trying to play beyond his ability when sees no one else doing much around him.

Comment 08 Mar 2014

Have loved watching these guys play.  Smith has had his slumps, particularly when trying to be the perimeter scoring focus, but have loved how he plays hard, especially under the bucket where others tend to lack effort or instincts.  As for Craft, I'm not sure I have ever enjoyed watching someone play the game more than him.  Yeah, he can't shoot and probably fouls more than we'd like to admit, but I've never seen someone effect and indeed take over games the unusual ways that he does.  He's like an old school fundamentals guys on steroids and it is a pleasure to watch.  I suspect that is why coaches drool over him, he's the rare living example of how emphasizing the fundamentals coaches teach can win, even if your not supremely talented.  This year has been disappointing, but it shouldn't be a knock on these two that they couldn't make up for failings around them, though they often tried.


Comment 19 Feb 2014

Expected that Colter would take shots at his school, he had to.  He's arguing a need for a union to protect him.  He has to argue that he's treated like an employee and not really like a student, and that his employer abuses him.  Otherwise, why is a union needed?  I think he and other players have a legit claim for a bigger share of the money, which would come only from eliminating non-revenue athletic scholarships by the way, but unionizing doesn't seem to fit.

Comment 18 Feb 2014

It is very cool, although Woodruff was the northern edge in this border.  I think the original Ohio Field was in the NE corner where Woodruff and High meet.  I'm guessing they plowed down everything between Woodruff and Lane sometime in 50's or 60's to make North Campus?

Comment 18 Feb 2014

That's the old "Sawtooth" chemistry Lab, can't remember its real name but that's what we called it.  Were told it was built as a temporary "20-year" structure long ago, but it was still there in the early 80s.  We'd cut through it on way from north campus, but remember our chemistry friends refused to do so regardless of weather as they thought it too dangerous.