I don't disagree. I guess I'm just surprised that some knowledgeable Alabama fans are throwing in the towel because of this injury.
College Football Nerds (formerly SEC Fans on YouTube) just tweeted that this likely ends Alabama's national championship hopes as linebacker, particularly MLB is their thinnest position. They follow Alabama closer than almost anybody. Hopefully he makes a speedy recovery.
- I like Ryan Day a lot. He was my first choice as head coach. That being said, he won't be as good as Urban. I don't think he will be as good as Tressel, either. I am expecting an Earle Bruce regime at Ohio State. I would guess he has less than a 10% chance to equal Urban.
- Urban Meyer doesn't deserve many of the bad things said about him. His biggest issue is that he doesn't care about his image or PR, he only cares about winning.
- The expectations for the team are absurd and completely unreasonable. Urban Meyer won back-to-back huge bowl games, went 7-0 against Michigan, and many believe that he wasn't cut out for the job anymore. Yes, he has flaws with his loyalty. However, it would be tough to find someone to do a better job.
Coombs and Johnson teach face guarding, so they never turn around to look at the ball in order to play the wide receiver's hands. Sheffield often has to guard their best receiver, so he has had quite a few spectacular catches and throws against him. Arnette has been roasted a couple of times but is mostly in good position.
If you look at MGoBlog's game preview, they believed that Ohio State's cornerbacks have been woefully coached since 2012, and they just have unbelievable talent. I tend to think that five first-round cornerbacks say otherwise, but whatever.
McMurphy has an enormous ego, and it is going to ruin his career. Any time his name is mentioned he has to make sure his reputation isn't slandered. What an abomination of a story, and an embarrassing way to put your name out there again.
I completely agree. This was always going to be an uphill battle with the youth and inexperience. The offseason drama just amplified it. 10-2 would be a borderline miracle; most teams crash and burn from this sort of thing.
Clemson still has down years. They were not great at all last year; they were probably about as good as Michigan. However, they played in the ACC, where the other best team was Miami.
Alabama has down years too, but their down years are good enough to win national championships. Regardless, they are an unreasonable standard. I don't expect anyone to achieve that kind of success.
It's absolutely on Urban. It's his job to hire and fire assistant coaches. Davis was a terrible hire. What I am saying is that Urban is still capable of winning a national championship with the right guys around him. Essentially, if he makes the right moves regarding coaches, he can still win. He will need to show that he can still make the tough decisions this offseason.
Honestly, this season hasn't gone much differently than I thought it would back in the summertime, even before the Zach Smith stuff. This was always going to be a rebuilding year. The fact that it hasn't completely fallen apart is a bit of a surprise.
Losing Barrett was a big deal; I think a lot of people assumed that because Dwayne is a better passer, the offense would get significantly better. As we have seen, having to change the offense to suit new skillsets can have adverse effects. This is still a very good offense, but the balance and ability to attack a defense different ways are gone.
Bill Davis is still on staff. We knew the linebackers were going to continue to struggle. No surprise with the defensive issues. The safeties haven't been as good as expected; perhaps Grinch isn't as competent as we thought. However, when they are put one on one with a slot receiver playing ten yards off the ball, and there isn't a linebacker in the area, I don't think we can expect much. This is on Schiano. Also, Brendan White's performance Saturday and Isaiah Pryor's improvement leaves me a little more optimistic.
The corners haven't been lockdown, but they haven't been picked on much this year because the middle has been left open.
Coach Stud is fine, but he isn't as good as Warinner. He might recruit better, but Warinner always made sure it didn't matter. He can turn three-star guys into All-Americans. Coach Stud can turn five-stars into second-team All-Conference.
The team is recruiting well, but some of the assistant coaches on the team are not doing their job outside of recruiting. You can have all of the talents in the world, yet if they are coached incorrectly, it won't matter. None of this has changed since the offseason.
TL;DR: This team was always going to be rebuilding this year. None of this is surprising. A couple of coaching changes will likely fix many of these issues.
To be fair, Ohio State used to do this with Chris Ash and Luke Fickell in 2014, 2015, and 2016. Maybe that's one of the reasons why those defenses were so good.
We aren't good enough to do that this year.
I still don't know. He's always hired his friends. As for playing team favorites, I can only think of one instance where fans have criticized him for playing favorites, and that was with JT. I even was skeptical as to whether Dwayne was better. Yet, this year, while Dwayne is clearly the better passer, Ohio State can't run the ball without a running quarterback. The o-line just hasn't been good enough. The move to keep JT at quarterback actually makes sense.
Right, it is all about improvement. Looking back at the last few years, the best assistant coaches always had units that improved dramatically over a year.
Coombs' cornerbacks gave up over 400 yards to Richard Lagow, but performed really well down the stretch. Denzel Ward is looking like a potential Rookie of the Year in the NFL right now. Kendall Sheffield went from not being able to cover anybody to being reliable and having a huge game against USC. Marshon Lattimore got burned over and over again in 2015 but became one of the country's best in 2016.
Larry Johnson doesn't need a recap at this point.
Ed Warinner's offensive line was swiss cheese against a 6-6 Virginia Tech team. They were dominated all night. By the end of the year, they were bullying Alabama. Look at what he is doing at Michigan this year with a bunch of 2 and 3-star guys.
I just want to see a significant improvement over the year. The offensive line seemingly never improved over the course of 2016, 2017, and 2018. The linebackers got worse with time over the past two years. It is time to make changes with Davis and Studrawa.
Right. There has been little pressure, and it still seems like most of the defense's woes concern the middle of the defense. Big plays seem to result from issues with the linebackers and the safeties, not the cornerbacks. They would look a hell of a lot better with better LB's and safeties.
This line is the worst of the Meyer era for sure. But some of those Jim Bollman offensive lines from the 2000's were putrid. Nothing will be as bad as that.
I would trade Warinner for Studrawa in a heartbeat, it's a shame he was ever moved out of the offensive line coaching position at Ohio State.
Coaching and development are the two issues. The biggest difference between Ohio State teams that succeed and teams that fail is the coaching. Sometimes captains can circumvent this and keep things in order, but generally, it is a lack of great coaching. The offensive line hasn't been the same since Warinner left. Now, look what he is doing at Michigan. The linebackers have been a liability since Fickell left. The only year that I can remember without any positions that were clear weak spots was 2014.
This is the nature of the beast though. Urban (and Saban) prioritize recruiting over everything, so there will be years where the actual coaching is not up to snuff because the coaches are great recruiters. Right now, Alabama just happens to have really good coaches that can recruit well, where Ohio State only has really great recruiters.
I am confident things will change with a competent linebacker coach and offensive line coach. I have seen Schiano put together strong defenses in the past at Ohio State, so I know he can succeed. I have never been overly impressed with Coach Studrawa's linemen and I have never been remotely impressed with Bill Davis' linebackers. Those are likely the two positions that need a change.
I still think it's a little of coaching. Coach Stud recruits a lot better than Warinner does, but Warinner could turn three-star guys into All-Americans, where it seems like Coach Stud's lines have been just good, not great.
According to the S&P+, Michigan is ranked 4th and Ohio State 5th. If they were to play on a neutral site today, Michigan would likely be a 1 point favorite, given those rankings.
Ed Warinner has already started to work his magic on that offensive line. Ohio State's o-line, with all of their four and five-star guys, is not playing as well as Michigan's o-line, with three-star guys at the tackle spots with no depth. If I were a betting man, I would bet on Michigan to win that matchup, today. Still, a few games left to iron some things out, though.
Pryor looks significantly better now than he did at the beginning of the season.
From the Penn State game on, you can see the difference from when he is on the field vs. when Wint is on the field. When Pryor was ejected from the Penn State game, the defense had given up two field goals and a touchdown in 13 drives, or 1 point per drive. After he was ejected, they gave up two touchdowns in 4 drives, or 3 points per drive. The defense gave up three times as many points per drive after he was ejected.
In the Indiana game, the effect was obvious. 20 points and over 300 yards in the first half (which he did not play) vs. 6 points and less than 100 yards in the second half (which he did play).
His improvement has saved the defense this season at multiple points; he absolutely deserves some props.