Having lived in Athens for 30+ yrs now, I do think the SEC is more passionate about their football. All the schools are willing to spend 3-4 million on a head coach and recruiting wars are nasty nasty nasty. They are their own worst enemies sometimes though because each one of them keeps the NCAA in everyone else's back yards with reports of cheating. Its a very low class environment in the off season and recruiting season.
After watching a few other teams play this weekend I think I have more agreement with your grades. Seeing how other guys play gives you perspective on our guys I think.
Yes this was frustrating team to watch and we all hoped for more but we got great effort form most (ahem Amir) and the Bucks aren't alone as elite teams with huge holes in their game. Did anyone watch Kansas and Syracuse play? They were very Buckeye like. Long periods of no offensive output but a sound defense that kept them in the game. Giving themselves a chance but no one being able to hit the big shot. Kansas is OSU with a couple better athletes at a couple positions. They were so bad down the stretch offensively, KU fans must be pulling their hair out and Syracuse too! Both those teams spent time at #1 this year and were seeded much higher than Bucks. We are a hairs breadth from being an Elite 8 team with all our flaws.
We are a defensive minded team at our heart. If you won't play D, Matta doesn't really want you. That means some guys won't even be looked at. Im okay with that. Mattas calling card has put the Bucks in position to be one or two 3 pointers of a final four every damn year!!
If Zell and Q makes 3 or 4 more 3 pointers at the right times or if Craft had 5 more made three throws and 3 less TOs we wouldn't be having this discussion right now and neither guys numbers would be significantly different. We'd be prepping for a Sweet Sixteen matchup with someone and knowing that if we hit a couple big shots, we are an Elite eight team...............again!
I think Beilein is a good coach too just not sure Id put him ahead of Matta. I like the way his teams play offense and I like the way he will use multiple defenses during a game too but he seems to live and die by the three a little too much. I like the fact that Thads calling card is making stops.
I give coach Matta a top 3 ranking when I consider who's teams are consistently a top defensive team and fight for 40 minutes. He's not a top ten when you consider offensive production however. His teams consistently have spells during halves where they forget how to score, its been an issue every year for them. He's a top ten recruiter I think but his program, due to the high minutes his core guys get, seems to run off some potentially good players (Weatherspoon, Seibert) and affects our depth, so getting them is one thing, keeping them is another.
Would I take anyone else? Sure but the guys I would take aint comin' and I am very happy to have Matta. All in all Ill take a team that fights and plays great D year in and year out to a team like Michigan has this year. Michigan may get another final four but no real inside defensive or offensive presence is no way to play basketball year after year.
Must confess to some of the same feelings years ago about Bobby Hurley and that kid from Kentucky (Rex?) I can't remember now.
I think what we have is a media that loves to find sensations (and will create them if they have to) and consumers who get a little jaded and skeptical of hype.
We have been quite lucky the last decade +. I was watching different highlight reels of various Buckeyes and between Mo C, Ginn, Beanie, Troy, TP, Brax, and Hyde, Im not sure anyone else has any better. And on defense we could make quite a reel of AJ, Bobby C, Donte, Malcolm, Lil Animal and even Cam.
I dont believe he trusts his ARM when the chips are down, but he trusts his legs. Partly he has been affected by one of the least effective receiving corps in about 20 years at OSU (in my opinion) If you look at OSUs history with receivers since 94-95, its been a steady progresssion from Glenn, Galloway, Boston, Dee Miller, Rambo, Jenkins, Gonzo/Ginn/Holmes, Hartline, Robiskie, Sanzenbacher....... thats a lot of guys to get a QB out of trouble. The last 3 years have been pretty putrid by those aforementioned standards. Every one goes through those phases with talent at different positions. This has been our down period for receivers IMO.
I dont believe he trusts his ARM when the chips are down, but he trusts his legs. Partly he has been affected by one of the least effective receiving corps in about 20 years at OSU (in my opinion) If you look at OSUs history with receivers since 94-95, its been a steady progresssion from Glenn, Galloway, Boston, Dee Miller, Rambo, Jenkins, Gonzo/Ginn/Holmes, Hartline, Robiskie, Sanzenbacher....... thats a lot of guys to get a QB out of trouble. The last 3 years have been pretty putrid by those aforementioned standards. Every one goes through those phases with talent at different positions. This has been our receivers lull IMO.
They were pretty dominant when Clarett was healthy.
Take away Cam for 4.5 games and see what Auburns record was. Take away Jameis for 4.5 games and see what FSUs record was. Take away Tebow for 4.5 games..... take away Young ..... take away Bush...... take away Winslow. The only teams that were not that reliant on one guy honestly were the Bama teams.
Id rank OSU a few places higher than this guy (prob top ten) but I dont think they were a top five.
That being said Id like OSUs defense that year to keep every one of those teams below 17 points, and with a healthy Clarett that could be enough.
Yeah, looked like the umpire might have been just enough in his view that he missed him
I was following via my phone and when the score was 58-52 the screen stopped refreshing
I closed the ESPN app and when I reopened it the score was final and thought it had to be a mistake
Going back to 1968 certainly doesnt improve OSUs numbers very much, if at all. I was an enthusiastic teenager during the 70s and had my heart broken virtually every year but I take your point.
As much as we lionize 'Bama, they have had their share of missed ops too. There are more than you even caught in the 2000s but ALL the great programs have that history. No one has won them all and tough losses are part of every coaches resume. The good ones get back again and again to try.
Right, especially when you include Mattas boys!
Agreed. When you look at the number of times they have controlled their own destiny and just had to win their last 3 games to play for it all they likely have one of the worst records. But really this just shows how hard it is to win them all.
USC had a number of years during their big run that they lost to Cal, Oreg St or UCLA and lost a chance for a sure BCS title game.
I havent run the numbers but Ill say OSU is in the top 5 in the last decade of winning % in big games according to the definitions I used. Plus they have few inexplicable losses to really subpar teams.
Yes I didnt define choking but mostly I am defining it as taking/not taking care of business in big games. OSU has had very few times they lost inexplicably to unranked teams when they were a top 5 or better ranked team. Any loss after Penn St in '02 would have been a choke but the Michigan game was THE ticket to the desert and all knew it.
The 03 loss to Wiscy was as #1 but it was early enough(game 6 I believe) that we still had time to get back..... til the Mich loss.
Any loss prior to Michigan in 06 would have been a choke, as heavily favored as the Bucks were usually, but again we rose to the occasion against Mich and won when everything was on the line.
I agree about LSU '07 and USC '08. LSU was much closer than the score indicated. We were not beaten by a team at a different level. They made more plays, we had some costly stupid penalties and............ we essentially were on the road. They rarely stopped us that night but we stopped them fewer. But it was not men against boys, the way '06 appeared. USC was way better at that time of year but that was far from a choke.
Unfortunately too many CFB conversations start out as both guys playing defense to the "Your team sucks" kind of garbage and dont really look to shed light, only bring heat. Choker is one of those terms
Correct. You have to play well enough first to even put yourself in position to lose something of meaning.
And yes, I will not win these discussions with these folks, I know that. I have simply, after 20+ years, decided not to just let some of their stuff go uncontested. Glutton for punishment I guess.
Agreed eddie. Only another win in a title game, probably against an SEC team or FSU will silence them...... for a while.
All is 100% true in the article and in the comments but I want to add one thing.
Our offense had the chance, TWICE, in the fourth quarter to start at our 45 or better after the blocked punt and the onside kick. Either time if we had eaten up some minutes and given our D a rest while adding a FG, we likely go to OT at worst. We had our best unit on the field, the one we would want on the field in crunch time, TWICE, and came away with zero first downs let alone points. We never broke their offensive momentum with some offensive momentum of our own in the 4th. Their D gets props for that but our offense NEEDED to be the one to seize the momentum, we did it all year except then and that was the difference.
So combine a TE seam with a slot wheel route and a WR curl. The corner will stay with the curl safety covers the seam and its doubtful the LB can get outside to cover a wheel
Changing the narrative is a huge goal. Its obvious that the new system will still rely on perception of pollsters so being a BIG champ needs to automatically qualify for the top four the way an SEC champ does.
Dont underestimate Iowa I say
LSU is a fast undisciplined defense, I think Ferentz can dial up some ways to make them over run things and keep thr game very competitive. They do have a good running game (not OSU level) but the main thing is that LSU did have a bit of a passing game to go with it, at least til Mettenberger went down.
I think Iowa is exactly the type of team that could frustrate LSU. Patient with solid trench play. Ferentz always seems to get a good bowl performance out of his boys.
The one thing that LSU hasnt had so far this year is a gamebreaker like Honeybadger on the STs. That was their calling card during their glory days Trendon Holliday, Honeybadger, Patrick Peterson
As much blame as the defense deserves for its breakdowns, I put most of the blame for the late 3rd and 4th qtr turnaround on the offense. 2 possessions where they started at midfield or better following onside kick and block punt and they dont make a first down. The D needed a rest and the O gave them none. Its a team sport and the O was gone for the 1st and 4th qtrs.
Gotta say, I love Urban and am glad he is here, but for those who wanted to say all those years ago that Urban or someone else would have been more creative and used his talent better than JT did during much of his tenure, I didnt see it this year for the most part. Where were the different formations and personnel groups to keep the defenses off guard? Where was Dontre on offense? (maybe he's not what we hoped.....yet). Where were the screens other than to WR? This was supposed to be something Urban excelled at, using all his personnel and keeping Ds guessing. The only guessing they had to do was is Brax going L or R?
Now, maybe we dont have the horses we hoped and Hyde and Brax were the only ones he trusted in crunch time but thats on him and the coaches too.
Urbans offense is JTs offense with the QB five yards back. Thats it. Thats not a knock per se but this myth that Urban has some sort of voodoo offensive skills that make defending him impossible just doesnt seem factual. Hyde and Brax are absolute studs but an offense needs more than that against a good/great D.
It doesnt hurt as bad as 1998 because Sparty was undefeated in conference play too! They werent some 5-3 team coming to CBus to dash our hopes. Sparty was better then their #10 ranking and I hope they absolutely mangle Stanford. No comparison to other times Sparty broke our hearts. This wasnt really an upset. I know the odds say it was, and I think we bet them 6 out of ten but none of them would be blowouts.