Social Reactions: Ohio State's Worst Performance of the Season Creates Concerns for 2024

By Johnny Ginter on December 30, 2023 at 8:03 am
Ohio State football player Josh Proctor

Have you ever lost so badly that it made you question the future?

Usually a loss is a loss. "That was bad, but we'll get 'em next time fellas!" or some other permutation of dusting yourself off and trying harder next time is generally the most healthy way to handle defeat. You get better and try harder, and there's the belief that the next time you face a similar obstacle you can overcome it.

Sometimes though, you face a setback so painfully complete, so incredibly obvious, that you start to question what the hell you're doing at every fundamental level.

Ryan Day's coaching prowess is predicated on the idea that he's an offensive whiz kid, a guy who can turn lemons into lemonade no matter what the situation. Ohio State's 14-3 loss against Missouri felt like the closing argument of someone who vehemently disagrees with that premise, and who used the entirety of the 2023 season as his courtroom evidence. The Buckeyes took a significant step back offensively this past season in almost every facet of the game, and the culmination of that was a game where neither of the quarterbacks Day played seemed prepared for a top-10 opponent or had an offensive line ready to keep them upright.

It was a bad effort from an anemic offense that wasted an excellent effort by an elite defense. That's the kind of thing that's supposed to happen to Iowas and Ferentzes, not Ryan Day and Ohio State.

It's going to be a long, long offseason, but hopefully that gives the coaching staff some time to either polish their resumés or figure out how to shore up the foundations of Ohio State football.

Oh, and surprise! Ohio State players and staff were mostly silent after the game. Here's a hodgepodge (not a Hodgepodge) of Tweets from the Cotton Bowl:

See you next season! Or in a few days, when I try to forget this crap ever happened and turn into the biggest basketball fan you've ever seen.

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