First posted at Inside The Shoe by Brady.
I’m literally speechless. I haven’t seen that kind of performance from the Buckeye’s since the debacle in Southern California a few years back. Even that game against USC wasn’t as painful as this past weekend’s contest against the Hurricanes. After the dust settled on Sunday, the Buckeyes dropped out of the Top 25 for the first time in 7 years. Think about that. It has been since 2004 since our beloved football team haven’t shown up somewhere on that list. You know what? There is no argument from me nor should there be from any true Buckeye fan out there. The “offense” was absolutely pathetic and at no time during that game did I believe we had a shot to punch it in the end zone. It will take a miracle for this team to stay in contention for the Big Ten title after what we all witnessed on Saturday night.
The limited opportunities that the Buckeye’s were given at Miami came from everyone’s favorite pick machine Jacory Harris. With Miami already up 14-0, Jacory threw two interceptions in the first half setting up the Buckeye “offense” with excellent field position and a chance to tie this thing going into half. Unfortunately Joe Bauserman and his high-octane offense wouldn’t have any of that. Doing their best Browns circa 2008 impression, OSU only managed two field goals from inside the 20 yard line. After those two wasted possessions you could almost feel the air let out of the whole state.
Braxton Miller didn’t offer much more than the 5th year senior did in terms of production. He also managed to put the ball on the ground at the most inopportune time as the offense was driving in a last ditch effort to get back in the game. He did show flashes of his speed and elusiveness when taking off to run a few times. I was also impressed with his arm strength even though the only Buckeye INT came from his arm. There is a ton of growth and practice that needs to take place but the guy is our future. We all saw what Joey B brings to the table and it isn’t much. He looked confused, flat-footed and basically just all kinds of awful. It is amazing to me that this is the guy that Ohio-freakin’-State put in there for a big game like this. I know that Pryor and the rest of his tattooed brothers kind of took the legs out from under the program but for this to be Plan B is unacceptable. Braxton has to be the guy the rest of the way.
If what we saw against Miami is where this team truly is then we will be lucky to punch a ticket to the Alamo Bowl. Might as well put the kid in there to get those valuable reps and prepare for the future. To play Bauserman anymore would be self destructive to say the least. Was there any good to come out of this massacre? I thought the defense played their hearts out, especially in the second half. They did give up some ungodly amount of rushing yards but time and time again they gave 3 and outs when the outcome was still in doubt (LOL). The defensive line got adequate pressure throughout the night and they definitely played a part in the two interceptions for the bucks. The linebackers had a tough night though. Sweat and Kline are serviceable but not the caliber of backer we are used to here in Ohio. I hope Shazier will see more playing time if these guys continue to be a step too slow.
Jordan Hall really showed that he belongs on the field over any of the other backs. The man ran with purpose and intensity. Most of his damage came in the middle of the line which was a little surprising considering his body type. After watching Bauserman airmail almost every throw I was screaming at the TV for Fickell to just give it to Hall. He was the only resemblance on an offense that the Buckeyes had. Hyde had a decent game as well but Hall should be the main RB until Herron comes back in a couple weeks.
I do have to give a quick shout out to Ben Buchanan. Without his punting heroics the game would have been much worse much earlier. He coffin cornered a few that left Miami with horrible field position and let our defense really get after Harris. Not that it mattered though. Maybe the defense should run some plays on the other side of the ball this weekend. It couldn’t be any worse right?
I was one of the folks that fully backed the Fickell hire and I had really hoped that he did well enough to earn a long term contract. That possibility went down faster than a cheap hooker in Coral Gables (I couldn’t resist) on Saturday. Luke looked lost and dazed for much of the game. He kept swapping quarterbacks when it clearly wasn’t working and didn’t try to change up the game plan from what I could see. I think he will be an excellent coach someday but he has to go work that shit out in the MAC or some other lower conference. Learning these tough lessons on national TV at the helm of a college football super power isn’t the way to go. I am fully behind him the rest of the season but I think his fate was sealed in Southern Florida unless something drastically changes. I wish him the best and hope to see him return to OSU when the time is right.