Didn't miss the point at all. A better B10 Championship Game and a better stronger B10 division makes the B10 better on the national stage. Fools gold to think we are going to kick teams out or that the perennial cellar dwellers are suddenly going to change things around or suddenly have excess cash to spend. Under my approach we would have played Wisconsin and Nebraska this year instead of Illinois and Indiana. Even if only slightly improved the national opinion would be better for OSU and the B10 if the upper half of the B10 played each other.
Take the two divisions and shuffle them each year. Top 7 teams stay in one division and bottom 7 stay in the other division. Then the B10 Championship game is played between the top 2 teams in the "top 7" division. More often then not you'd get the best two teams in the B10 Championship game and you'd help the top tier of the B10 by having them playing each other ( 6 games against other teams in the top division). For example this year both Mich St and OSU would play Wisconsin instead of Indiana.
My thinking is if we can't get rid of teams or bring new teams into the league then let's at least have our top B10 teams play each other every year.
Thought his interview and insight into Ash was pretty interesting.. said a lot of the terminology changed with Ash. Said he talked to the linebackers and they said Ash has simplified things and calling more blitzes then last year.
Willing to give the kid the benefit of the doubt that this "new" problem was part of the problem from last year and he lied to OSU and his parents. If he comes clean to ALL of it... agrees to rehab and takes every step his parents and the team lay out for him I'd have no problem welcoming him back next season after sitting out this season. The last thing a kid with a drug problem needs is to be kicked to the curb.
One of the most depressing comments I've heard lately : "Curtis Grant has "come along way," but freshman Raekwon McMillan will continue "nip at his toes for the spot."
Every great coach at every level of the game offers up some version of "you have to get your best 11 players on the field"... the fact that Luke/Ash are doing the same thing Heacock use to do just seems so dated. If you just labeled all of our LBs as just linebackers I'd be willing to bet Grant and Raekwon would be two of the best three...but they won't put them on the field at the same time because they see them both as MLBs... Just no outside the box thinking on defense. Do we really think our LB play would be worse with Grant, Raekwon and Perry on the field at the same time??
And not just the LBs Luke does the same thing with DL. When's the last time you saw four of our best 4 pass rushers in on a play? He's gone now but imagine a 3rd and 12 with Grant, Bosa, Spence and Jamal Marcus rushing the passer. Best teams in the NFL do it. Teams in SEC/PAC 12 do it. OSU. NEVER. It's always two bigs and two ends.
Good work Ross... still not sold the defense "looked better" though. Almost no pressure all game unless we sent more than 4 and it seemed like VaTech got Vanilla after the lead then when they needed to score dialed things back up and had no problems marching down the field. Not to mention that's not a very good offense VaTech has.
We seem the be having the same problems on both sides of the ball. Coordinators trying to match kids to their schemes instead of looking at the talent and matching a scheme to the kids.
Still baffles me that WR is a problem area and EVERYONE knows that despite Urban overselling the position for two years so why aren't the backs/tight ends getting 10-15 balls a night. Scheme!!!!!!! ( although I think Michael Thomas is a keeper at WR)...
Well, on defense there are plenty of rumors he couldn't fire/demote Luke so who else do you think you are going to get? The big gun defensive coordinators don't want to share the job. I think that changes next year in a BIG way.
I think Urban whiffed on Herman. There's a BIG difference between scoring points at Iowa State vs big time games that matter. 90% of the games Ohio State plays any college OC could step in probably win the games. It's the other 10% that count. Urban thought "if he can do this at Iowa St, think what he can do at OSU".. and it didn't work out that way... He either panics or gets way too cute in the big games.
That's been my problem with Herman from day one. He doesn't get OSU football. VaTech was the perfect example. You don't scheme around a team. You tell them and show them and it let's your players know WE ARE OSU and we're going to jam the ball down your throat no matter what defense you throw at me... When VaTech rolled that defense out there and Urban said "wow" in the headset you want a OC who says..."I got this".... instead we got one who said "wow...indeed"...
Nope, but he knows football. Smart guy, VERY smart football guy and more importantly to me... a guy who lives/from Ohio..Canton. He was an academic all american and won the Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award and a national championship. Next time he calls a game listen to what he would do in a situation and then watch what happens. He's almost always right. He's got a great eye for what works in game against any defense.
We're probably five total plays away from beating VaTech, MSU and Clemson.... still not sure that means we're any better than what we are today.
Don't disagree but it sends a TERRIBLE message to young team when your OC admits he can't run against VaTech and didn't even try. My problem with Herman is he seems like one of those guys who can't go off script. An elite OC has a plan A,B,C,D etc. Herman figured what we normally do ( plan A) wouldn't even work so he didn't try so he went to plan B and he couldn't ever come up with a plan C. You don't have to be a genius to know if there are 7/8 guys at the line of scrimmage you can dink/dunk 5 yards all day long till they back off. They dared him to attack the middle of the field and we ran go routes outside the hashes all night long. Just made it way too easy on them. heck we only scored 12 more points than William & Mary. Just unacceptable.
Still think the problem is the assistant coaches. Outside looking in you have a group of guys that seem like excellent human beings, fathers, husbands, competitors and as it relates to Ohio State EXCELLENT recruiters. But when you get 4/5* kids every class and it doesn't show up on the field there's a disconnect in there somewhere. This is the third year of Zach Smith as WR coach. Do we see an NFL ready WR on this team? Nope. Do our WRs continue to miss blocks, run bad routes, drop balls..yup. Can say the same thing with Ash and the DBs or Luke and the LBs. And I'll continue to think Herman is in over his head. One thing to put up points at Iowa State and against the dregs of the B10 and our non conference schedule but a different animal against top teams. He had no idea what to do against VaTech and it showed. That's just not acceptable. Especially in the playoff era when you could get any team on short notice.
I think the defense is going to struggle all year. Let Luke, Ash, Herman move on, move Zach Smith to special teams coach and Coombs to DB coach and bring in a proven WR coach. Open up the checkbook for guy like Todd Blackledge to come in and be our QB guru/OC and find a legit top end defensive coordinator ( when you put the word out we are looking for a defensive coordinator who doesn't have to share co- duties with anyone skies the limit imo).
*** I've got ZERO problems with Ed Warinner and Stan Drayton. Both recruit well and coach these kids up. Coach Warinner's got an inexperienced group that 1 year from now we'll all be saying can't believe we worried about OLine and RBs look like a solid group ( not his fault Herman gave up on the run). And I think Coombs gets a lot of flack but so many of our problems with the DBs are scheme not coaching and like Zach Smith he's a heck of a recruiter.
Well Urban didn't have a lot of options. Whoever he hired he was going to oversell to the fanbase. He was limited though. Had to bring in someone with DB experience and more importantly someone willing to accept the co-coordinator title.
Yup, His high school played a 5-2 monster D. Their safety played hybrid MLB. Grant and other LB were just asked to make plays. Reality is he didn't even play a traditional outside role in high school either.
You open the checkbook and offer Canton Ohio resident Todd Blackledge the OC gig. You get a guy from Ohio, a guy with a QB mind and one of the best x and o guys in the game.
We're never going to know what was said to Coach Meyer when he took the job in terms of what he could and couldn't do with Luke. I'm in the camp that taking the job included not being able to let Luke go or demote Luke until after the 2014 season. We're also never going to know what co-coordinator means in terms of in game play calling/adjustments. Both Ash/Luke are going to take the brunt of everything that goes wrong on defense. It's only a two game sample but unless Coach Meyer is telling these guys what to do on defense we're still seeing a lot of what Luke "does on defense" and not much of what Ash did at Arkansas or what has been promised since Ash was hired. Leads me to believe behind the scenes both Luke and Ash are calling the defense or at the very least Luke is still putting his footprint on things. Arkansas corners under Ash jammed guys at the line scrimmage. Urban has been saying for two plus years that he wants our corners up attacking..... and we're still not doing it. Urban wants it...Ash did it in the past..and we're still not doing it?
I fully expect Coach Meyer to be at a podium after the season wishing Luke nothing but the best of luck in his new gig with a new team. Where I think it might get interesting is what does he do with Ash. We could finally move past the "co" coordinator thing so that would open it up to clean both Ash and Luke out...
I'm never going to put this on Curtis Grant. He plays hard. He didn't play middle linebacker in high school and for the past 4 years we have been playing the kid in a position he's not ever going to grasp. That's on Luke. I think back to Coach Heacock's describing Grant as a future rush end one day at Ohio State. The whole thing reminds me of Aldon Smith in college and early at the Niners. Both teams tried for a year to throw too much at Smith and his game suffered.
Jury is out on Zach Smith as well imo. Either he's bringing in the wrong guys or not coaching them up or both. Past two season we've had more bad routes, missed blocks and dropped passes then I can remember. And it does nothing for our DBs in practice. Chicken and egg but our WRs don't block and our DBs get driven 5 yards off every play...
Our downturn at WR started before Smith got here but will never forget a couple of draft experts saying look for Devier Posey to contribute in a few years....after he learns the WR position.
Mentioned this below. But my guess is Herman doesn't trust JT so in an effort to make things easier he's removed the playbook that involves the middle of the field ( that's typically where young QBs make bad decisions)... but imo maybe you dial that back.. you don't eliminate it. Just made it so easy on VaTech. They never had to cover anyone in the center of the field.
I mean if an offense coordinator can't dial up a play with a safety 40 yards from the line of scrimmage better than everyone go deep... it's a problem...
I expected some hiccups but the surprising thing to me is it's not just one area. WRs missed blocks, ran bad routes dropped passes. OLine was awful and didn't get much help from the RBs in terms of blocking. Special teams continue to be a mess ( still like our punter and not going to blame him for one shank as we continue to run the clock down to 1 second before we snap). But c'mon. Can we not find someone to return kickoffs? Can we not find someone at a school with 50,000 kids who can knock the ball in the end zone or at least in bounds? Linebackers continue to make the same mistakes they made against Navy and there seems to be zero trust in the back seven. They all continue to want to cheat off their assignment. If the coach tells you to cover the fullback you cover the fullback even if it seems like a waste of time and you want to make a "play". We just got out x and o on both sides of the ball.
Herman has to open up the playbook and stop trying to be too cute. His whole game plan was based off two things. I don't want my QB throwing between the hashes ( zero passes across the middle making TEs obsolete)..and two I don't think we can run against them so let's not try that at all....
Until Herman opens up the play book ( something Urban promised he would do, he didn't ) this team is going to struggle. Herman did not call one play ( until late) where the #1 receiving target was between the hashes. All four of JTs picks are down the left hand side of the field. It just made it too easy for VaTech. They would stack 7/8 in the box knowing their DBs only had to cover outside the hashes. No throws to the TE, no screens to the middle of the field. NOTHING. VaTech never had to put their LBs in coverage all night. You just can't beat a team with speed when that team can run as well. Freaking Blackledge was like "it's third and long with a safety playing centerfield so the one thing you don't want to do is throw long".. sure enough Herman dialed up deep routes EVERY TIME.
I will say this though. WR play is awful. Michael Thomas looks like a keeper but the rest are a mess. Missed blocks, drops, bad routes.. heck I appreciate everything Devin Smith has done but he's making plays 2 star WRs can make if they get 5 yards behind a DB. I know he's Earl's grandson but at some point Zach Smith has to start taking some heat...
The "brightside" raekwon mcmillan came in and planted a guy and even rushed up to the line to get the tackles to swap spots like he actually knew what he was doing :)
I know Blackledge is a great x and o guy but just depressing hearing him call everything VaTech was going to do before they did and then it worked. Same problems on defense as we had against Navy. Guys in the back 7 refusing to trust the man next to them. If your job is to chase the fullback CHASE THE FULLBACK. Have had enough of these guys peaking and sliding off their man and trying to make hero plays.
The problem, and VaTech sure knew it, is Herman doesn't trust Barrett over the middle. Until those two dink passes at the end of the game Herman refused to go over the middle. Makes our TEs obsolete and makes it WAY to easy to defend when you don't have to worry about a third of the field.
My biggest gripe is how many times are you going to let a team blitz and NOT throw at least one screen. ZERO screen plays. ZERO passes between the hashes.
Never said Thad wasn't doing a great job. Just that any time a five star kid passes on OSU people seem to forget what Thad does isn't always a good fit for some of these five star kids. No different in football. You don't see us chasing five star drop back QBs because it's not what we do. Unless Thad changes how he coaches were never going to chase the Carmelo Anthonys of the world.
Thad does not +/- kids. You play/learn defense then you can hit the floor. That's why OSU is always a top 10 defensive school. Coach K at Duke, routinely a horrible points against team, does the +/- thing as do other coaches. If I put player x on the floor and he gives me 10 points and his terrible defense allows 6 points I'm ahead four points. Thomas, Ross and others sat forever until they learned to play defense. We're never going to get some of these five stars kids who can score from anywhere and have no interest in playing defense.