Film Study: How Luke Fickell and Marcus Freeman Built the Top-10 Defense They'll Bring to Ohio Stadium This Fall

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Keze's picture

Bring it 

don't sing it 

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dvo45's picture

and you better . believe Fickell, who might as well be Senator Fickell the week leading up to this game, behind the scenes is going to be extra amped up to show Mean Gene and the BOT how the F'd up the successor to Urban Meyer 

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IBLEEDSCARLETANDGRAY's picture

Your punctuation sucks.

"You're the patron saint of the totally effed" - Hot Tub Time Machine

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BackInAction's picture

Luke Fickell needs to introduction among Buckeye fans...

Needs no introduction....

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buckeyearchie76's picture

A "trap" game at the Shoe?  You have to be kidding me!  Remember Luke went 6-7 in his one year of coaching the Buckeyes.  That is not a resume that stands out especially when the university was looking for a replacement for a coach like Urban Meyer.  I realize that Luke gave Michigan all they wanted at Ann Arbor his first year.  And I am sure Coach Day will bring that up as well.  The Buckeyes need a tough game from UC.  The other 2 non-conference opponents are terrible.  I like the Bucks by three touchdowns over the Bearcats.  GO BUCKS!

Louis Haynes

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LWiegand91's picture

His 1 year as interim coach, not being able to put into place any of his own assistants, schemes etc., losing the players from the crap the year before, having 2 QBs (Bauserman or Miller, a true freshman), they loss 1 game by more than 7 pts (at Miami), is your explanation as to why we shouldnt be worried and why Fickell didnt get looked at for the job instead of Day? His record as an assistant, Assistant coach of the year 2010, turn around at UC in 2 years, ability to recruit at UC, etc., might say otherwise. Not saying OSu should have chosen Fickell over Day, but to discount UC and Fickell becasue during a hugely difficult season he went 6-7 with 6 losses by a touchdown or less is being naive

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C-Deck's picture

In fairness to Fickell, he didn't have the previous season's starting QB returning. 

"Hit them hard and see how they fall"

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MichiganBuckeye222's picture

This game makes me nervous... Iowa/Purdue nervous.  

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Moneymike's picture

if Cincinnati of all teams makes your nerves this is going to be a horrible season for the buckeyes. 

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Nutinpa's picture

I see your point, but in 2002, they were one play away from ruining a perfect season of ours.  I'll be damned if I will take them lightly.  UC is also arguably better -- or at least competitive, than half of the teams in the Big Ten.  

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MichiganBuckeye222's picture

2017:  "If Iowa of all teams makes you nervous (sic), this is going to be a horrible season for the buckeyes."

2018:  "If Purdue of all teams makes you nervous (sic), this is going to be a horrible season for the buckeyes."

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BuckeyeChief's picture

This game makes me a bit nervous, but I think the good guys pull it out. I think our D will be much improved and may have to carry us until Fields get a feel for the O.

SCPO, USN (ret)

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Zimmy07's picture

That was a ballsy move by the safety, jumping the route before the ball left the QB’s hand.  A long arm fake gets him toasted for doing that on a stop & go route.  Not that I would know from it happening to me or anything.

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Zimmy07's picture

In a fraction of a second it goes from visions of high fives in the film room for the pick 6 to...

oh, fuck.  With ice running down your spine.

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jpfbucks01's picture

The fighting Fickell's played only 4 teams ranked in the top 50 in total offense last year and in those 4 games they allowed 30, 23, 38 and 31 points 

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aledyard's picture

The Buckeyes weren't exactly world-beaters on defense last year if you want to do comparisons...

I expect Fickell to have UC more than ready and wouldn't be at all surprised to see the Bearcats pull off the upset. 

"In America, anyone can become president.  That's the problem."  George Carlin

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BucksHave7's picture

Buckeyes avg'ed giving up over 400 yards game last year, worst EVER in history of tOSU Football.   And that team still finished #3 in the country.   

Fickell will have them ready, but you need to do the impossible to beat a team that has consistently finished in top 3 in the country in national recruiting based on player average star rating. 

This years buckeye team beats last years team that finished #3 in the country. 

BucksHave7

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jpfbucks01's picture

the difference is that UC struggled when facing a tough offense and does not have OUR offense to overcome it

They narrowly beat Ohio U (ranked 16th) who was on their doorstep for a game tieing FG or winning TD but threw a pick to end it inside their 5, they allowed over 400 yards that day

They had a decent day against a mediocre S Fla team who went 7-6, 

UCF scored 5 TDs and a FG while UC only managed 13 points and Va Tech who with the loss finishsdsub .500 scored 31 and had almost 450 yards of offense

Sure we gave up some big yards ad points on occassion last year too, but we scored over 50 a game, where UC scored 46 but was driven by scoring 63 vs a FCS team

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PRO8's picture

We don't have our O to overcome it either, the D train won't be trotting out there with MCLaurin, PC and company to help.

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2morrow's picture

Sure we gave up some big yards ad points on occasion last year too, but we scored over 50 a game, where UC scored 46 but was driven by scoring 63 vs a FCS team

? Didn't we score 62 against an FCS team?

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Zimmy07's picture

76.  In 2013.  I’m not sure that we have played an FCS team since then.  We had 55 at halftime.

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Zimmy07's picture

HAHAHAHA!  I forgot about the one from Ann Arbor.  How could I?

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kiester's picture

the difference is that UC struggled when facing a tough offense

Did they win though?

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aledyard's picture

I could point out the struggles OSU faced last year against inferior competition, but that was last year and doesn't really translate to this year, particularly with the coaching/personnel changes.  OSU should be better on defense than last year and the offense under Day should be on par with last year.  On paper, this game really shouldn't be even close with the talent gap between UC and OSU.  With that said, I think Fickell and Freeman will have UC and its bevy of Ohio talent motivated and ready to play.   

"In America, anyone can become president.  That's the problem."  George Carlin

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ToledoBhen's picture

I’ll always feel that Coach Fickell was thrust into a tough situation as HC at tOSU. Regardless, he is still a good man and a good coach.

Dont’t get me wrong, though, I still expect us to hand him a ‘L’ on game day. 

"Living is the best revenge"

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Rocklin Jim's picture

This game is more than a trap game, it is a game against a top 25 opponent that will have nothing to lose. It always bothers me when our fans are so dismissive of other teams. I agree that we should and will be favored but this is an eleven win team with a very good coach so let's not take them lightly. 

Rocklin Jim

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osubuckeyeboy's picture

More than just a top 25 team. A top 25 team that is made up primarily of players from the great state of Ohio that did not get the opportunity to play for the big State School. I always feel a bit concerned when playing a state school, but none concerns me more then when we play UC.

"Sport can create hope where once there was only despair. It is more powerful than government in breaking down racial barriers." - Nelson Mandela

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cledaybuck's picture

Cincinnati ranked ninth nationally in total defense last fall, allowing just 303 yards-per-game, while the advanced stats liked them even more, ranking sixth in rushing marginal efficiency and first in completion rate allowed.

These stats make me angry after watching our defense last year.

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Port Richey Buckeye's picture

If we played their schedule I believe our stats would have looked better.

Fuck eSECpn and fuck Mythigan.

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cledaybuck's picture

Yeah, but we should have better athletes than them too.

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RunEddieRun1983's picture

Legit, motivation will not be in short supply for the Bearcats. They are coming to fight and try and catch The Buckeyes napping.

We have the talent, and ability, but UC isn't going to be coming to kiss the ring. Need to put it on them. 

Urban Meyer left an incredible legacy. 12/4/18 Ryan Day begins his.

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Nutinpa's picture

With the only exception being TTUN, no team will be more jacked up to beat the Buckeyes than UC this year.  Certainly doesn't mean they will, but I expect them to be "TCU-amped"  in the first quarter of the game, regardless of the Noon start. 

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HandsOfSweed's picture

Can't wait for all the annoyingly loud, frequent and drawn out "UC" chants and the "bUCkeye State" t-shirts like in 2014 from the oddly large number of visiting fans for a game in Ohio Stadium. I've never seen that many opposing fans in the Shoe before. My guess is that since this game is only 2 hours away, their freaking Super Bowl and World Cup all rolled into one and the tickets won't be TOO expensive, that there will be like 20,000 of them all dispersed in pockets. If you're going, be prepared to be slightly annoyed. No beer sales in 2014 either (as opposed to now), so if they keep it close, this has the potential to get a little stupid in the stands. 

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BucksHave7's picture

Really a close game?????   I know anyone can beat anyone on any given day, but National Ranking for Recruiting Class below, not even comparible.  

Year:   UC    tOSU

2018: 47      2

2017: 63      2

2016: 74      4

2015: 68      7

BucksHave7

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cledaybuck's picture

What do the recruiting stats for Purdue and Iowa look like (although, those weren't close).  Throw in Maryland too.

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BucksHave7's picture

Yr               Iowa         Pur

2018:        39             51

2017:        41            72

2016:        47            80

2015:        59           67

BucksHave7

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Trebor40's picture

By those numbers UC is a stronger team than Purdue, with a very good coach and assistant on defense.  

I would rather be on hand with 10 men then elsewhere with 10,000 - Timur Lenk

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Hovenaut's picture

Tire Fickell.

I'm not around that much, running exhausted and lost...

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GrandTheftHarley's picture

Today, despite both players learning the ropes in strict 4-3 systems, the Bearcats would best be described as 'Multiple' under Freeman and Fickell. Lining up with two big tackles inside, a stout strong-side end and a standup, hybrid Jack linebacker, UC can seamlessly switch between odd and even fronts from play-to-play. 

This will test a young Buckeyes OL. Whoever's the center will have to lead the blocking calls. Yikes.

I am not very smart, but I recognize that I'm not very smart. --- W.W. Hayes

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Major H's picture

The bottom line is Fick and Freeman will bring in a solid team and they will have a solid plan. Not going to sleep on them at all. 

I'd rather be an hour early than a minute late.

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andretolstoy's picture

I'm pretty confident Ohio State wins. But it will be mostly due to personnel. The gap between TheOhioState and Cincy in effort and coaching will not be that big. Fickell and Freeman can coach anywhere in the US and succeed. 

If you die before you die, then you won't die when you die. 

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BMOC_57's picture

Fickell also hired one hell of a defensive line coach in the offseason. He lured Coach Chad Wilt away from Army. Coach Wilt was one of the main reasons Army’s defense was so competitive last year (10th in total defense). 

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andretolstoy's picture

I'm always going to be a Buckeye, but I'm starting to become Bearcat and Army fan as well. 

If you die before you die, then you won't die when you die. 

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aerobuck's picture

this seems to be a game where the offense could struggle.  Fields running could be huge.  the extra dimension.

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CowCat's picture

I've said all along, we can't take this game for granted. Not with a new head coach, and apart from LJSR a whole new coaching staff on defense. I think our offense can pick them apart, but they need to be ready.

"We get paid to score touchdowns, not kick field goals"
-- Urban Meyer

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mmp15f's picture

Why I think Cincy will give us some trouble: The variety of looks they give on defense could be tough for a 1st-time starting QB and 4 new starters on O-line. Those guys have to be well-prepared, and be comfortable with all the pre-snap reads, checks, calls, etc.

Why I don't think they can beat us: They lost all 5 starters at O-line from last year's team. Their new starters will be blocking one of the best D-lines in America, including Chase Young--the best D-end in college football.

I'm more confident in our offense moving the ball at the end of the day, even if we do have some struggles. Could possibly be close into the middle of the 3rd, but I think we'll wear them down sooner or later.

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Ohioan13's picture

Well the problem is they didn't lose all of their OL, they only lost two starters (return C, RG, and RT), and pending the NCAA's latest crap shoot transfer appeal for LT James Hudson from TTUN, they may really only have one question mark up there.  Having them deal with Chase and the rest of the DL is still a question, but they're not walking out green shirts in the trenches and they've got a pretty damn solid back end of the defense up against a VERY green QB.  It'll be interesting, but I don't think the guys will take them lightly.

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mmp15f's picture

Thanks for fact-checking me here. I think I got them confused with another team’s 2019 preview I read recently

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Ohioan13's picture

No problem, didn't mean it negatively, just wanted to make sure we had solid perspective on this one.  I'm pretty sure they only lost something like 6 starters from the entire starting block last year (LT, LG, DT, DT, CB, and LB).

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mmp15f's picture

No problem, didn't mean it negatively, just wanted to make sure we had solid perspective on this one

Late reply, but trust me I know you didn't mean it negatively and it's always important to correct statements that are absolutely false.

I definitely should've double-checked that one. I was reading a bunch of 2019 previews about a week prior and mixed Cincy up with another team, but I should've made sure before I posted my initial comment.

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jbuckeye007's picture

Love Coach Fickell!!!   Hope he wins all but this game next year!

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Trebor40's picture

They come! 

We await! 

One hell of a game, yet I believe that like many - we win in a steady positional game in the first half where we keep getting the short end of the field and though the game is competitive the score makes it look otherwise. By the second they are playing catch up and cannot! 

I would rather be on hand with 10 men then elsewhere with 10,000 - Timur Lenk

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