Real Pod Wednesdays: Ohio State's Pass Defense Problems Are a Reason for Concern, But Its College Football Playoff Ranking Isn't

By Dan Hope and Colin Hass-Hill on November 25, 2020 at 11:05 am
Josh Proctor defending a pass against Indiana wide receiver Ty Fryfogle

We had no shortage of ground to cover on this week's episode of Real Pod Wednesdays.

The initial College Football Playoff rankings were revealed on Tuesday night, Ohio State just landed a pair of five-star recruits from Texas and the Buckeyes are set for an unconventional Thanksgiving weekend matchup with Illinois. But we had to start this week's episode by talking about the Buckeyes' pass defense, which has been the topic of the week after Ohio State gave up 491 passing yards against Indiana.

What's wrong with Ohio State's pass defense, and can the Buckeyes fix it? We talk about what we believe the issues are, what changes we would make to Ohio State's secondary and why there might not be a sure-fire solution – though we don't believe that's reason to give up your championship hopes and dreams.

After about 25 minutes of discussion on that, we share our other takeaways from the Buckeyes' 42-35 win over Indiana, including why we think Justin Fields suddenly become mistake-prone against the Hoosiers, why we don't have any concerns about lingering issues for the Ohio State quarterback and how we believe the offensive line and running backs stepped up their games to help lead the Buckeyes to victory.

We share our thoughts on Ohio State's initial College Football Playoff ranking around the 48:40 mark, and why we don't believe the Buckeyes are in a position to complain about being ranked behind Clemson, but why Ohio State is just fine at No. 4 anyway, as it appears to have a clear path to the playoff if it can win out.

Because we both expect that the Illinois game should be a fairly easy win for Ohio State, and there isn't anything that particularly stands out about the matchup with Illini, we spend just a few minutes previewing the Buckeyes' next game (beginning at 54:30).

Then, we shift our focus to the recruiting trail to talk about the commitments of five-star quarterback Quinn Ewers and wide receiver Caleb Burton, the eye-popping start that Ohio State is off to in building its recruiting class of 2022 and how Ohio State has emerged as the new QBU in the eyes of top quarterback recruits.

In Three Things We Think (1:08:30), Colin shares his preseason takes on Ohio State basketball and why he'll be focusing on the backcourt, Justice Sueing and defense as the season begins, while Dan explains why he's ready to grade the Al Washington hire as an “A” and how he believes fixing the pass defense is a new kind of test that Ryan Day has to deal with for the first time as Ohio State's head coach.

Finally, Colin discusses his controversial stance on Thanksgiving food (1:26:20) as we wrap up the show by answering a couple food-related questions from listeners.

Listen to this week's episode of Real Pod Wednesdays in the audio player above or click subscribe to listen on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or several other podcast platforms.

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