|This is my only positive thought about Oregon at this point.|
In case you didn't watch, Ohio State beat Oregon in the national championship game, 42-20. Oregon jumped out to a 7-0 lead, and then things were bad after that.
- For having a mobile quarterback themselves, Oregon did a terrible job of hemming in Cardale Jones. Their outside linebackers and defensive ends kept flying 10 yards upfield, which allowed Jones to step up in the pocket and/or escape contain. Maybe it was their goal to speed rush and try to rattle Jones, but the Ducks never adjusted.
- Ezekiel Elliott is a man. He had 220 or more yards in the final three games of the year, including 36 carries for 246 yards and 4 touchdowns against Oregon. He's not the most elusive guy around, but he has a good combination of speed and power.
- On the plus side, Urban Meyer went 9-4 following his first national championship at Florida. Unfortunately, he then went 13-1 following his second. Ohio State does not appear poised for a drop-off, because many of their best players (Ezekiel Elliott, Jalin Marshall, Darron Lee, Joey Bosa, J.T. Barrett) are too young to declare for the NFL Draft. However, there could be some turnover with the quarterback position (Braxton Miller to another school, Cardale Jones thinking about the draft) and some early entrants. But the Buckeyes recruit well and will most likely reload.
- The Big Ten has had a bad rap for getting pushed around in recent years, but the Buckeyes demolished Oregon up front. Aside from the pressure put on Oregon QB Marcus Mariota and the inability to create seams up front, the defining moment was when Jones scrambled up the middle and ran right through the tackle - I mean the nose tackle - of the Ducks, Alex Balducci.
- The Ducks flat-out laid an egg. They racked up penalties, made immature choices, had a poor game plan, dropped passes, etc. This was my concern when I pointed out that Meyer was 8-2 in bowl games and 2-0 in national championships, while Helfrich was in just his second year. Meyer's team was mentally and physically prepared to win the game, while Oregon was not.
Anyone looking at the box score and seeing 4 turnovers to 1 against OSU would think OSU lost that game. Here's the stat that sticks out in my mind:ReplyDelete
3rd down efficiency: Oregon: 2-12 OSU: 8-15
4th down efficiency: Oregon: 0-2 OSU: 3-3
Oregon could not keep their drives going, while OSU did. Oregon could not capitalize and make turnovers and yards into points; OSU did. Game over.
Oregon definitely had no answer for ohio state's running game, Elliott in particular. He ran over, around, and through the Duck's defense all night. And the Duck's offense was completely stymied. Any time you see 4 TO's to none in a box score, you have to think it's going to be at least a close game, but they just could not capitalize.ReplyDelete
Yeah. Ohio State blew people off of line of scrimmage, and their running game was an absolute monster. Harbaugh and his guys have their work cut out for them. Meyer's been recruiting like crazy for the past 3 years. We better work even harder to top that.ReplyDelete
I agree with both comments. OSU killed Oregon on the ground. I was stunned that the YPC wasn't higher because Elliot seemed to get 6-8 yards right up the gut every time he carried it. ESPN said that a majority of his carries were with him being untouched for 5 yards. Call Urban's masterful offense a spread if you want, but they succeed by smashing opponents to dust in the trenches.ReplyDelete
As for Oregon, they were outscored in the redzone 28-13 when the game still mattered (not counting the run-up-the-score moment by Urbs at the end that a lot of coaches would have kneeled out). That was a killer in addition to the critical penalties and drops that killed drives. Despite those boneheaded plays, they made it to the redzone four times and were left with just 13 points on those trips.
This felt a little like Lloyd's last game where we destroyed Florida and seemed to do whatever we wanted. The only reason the stats weren't even more lopsided were the turnovers. How OSU blew them out with FOUR turnovers is hard to comprehend. I can't stand Urban, but he's an amazing coach.
not to mention all those drives sustained with simple (yet still impressive and athletic) QB runs for 1st downs. meyer takes much of the thinking out of the game for his QBs and just lets his athletes play - if the QBs first read is not available he checks it down to backs / TEs or simply tries to get as many yards possible with his legs. very smart and efficient way to attack D's, its amazing why so many coaches insist on complicating the college game when its not necessary to winDelete
The game highlighted just how far we are talentwise from where we need to be in order to compete at a top 10 level. We don't have anyone who could start for OSU on either line, or at just about any other position. Their third string QB is light years ahead of our starter. Pretty tough to compete with a roster full of backups.ReplyDelete
I thought Ohio had a great plan and executed it very well: run the ball well, set up the big passing play, scramble if nothing's open. I thought Oregon had a horrible defensive plan. They didn't stop the run game or the pass game, for the most part it looked like they didn't try to, either. They sat back in coverage, rushing 3 on most downs, and played reactive defense all night. Was very surprised to see Oregon not take advantage of the many turnovers either. That shouldve been the difference in the game.ReplyDelete
thats meyers offensive game plan almost every single game, by the way. he gets his quick downhill running game going. and then his freak QBs either throw to their first read on deep crossing type stuff or take downfield shots in 1 vs 1 situations (very simple pass game to avoid mistakes and overthinking) - or QBs hit the check down options or take off and get positive yardage with their legs. teams not running similar O schemes in college game are crazyDelete
I have a hard time not believing that in some way, as metioned by Magnus the coaching platform had more to do with it then anything. Yes, Urban is certainly one of the best college coaches. Who is Oregons coach again...? Not only that, but I believe I read somewhere that Ohio State had unlimited practice time. So you now have an Urban Meyer coached Ohio State team that has unlimited time to prep for an Oregon team practicing with limitations and that has never won the "big" game....anybody still surprised?ReplyDelete
To put it into prespective, if that Ohio state team played that same Alabama team ten times, I'd bet they lose 7 of them.
Regarding that OSU vs Alabama thing, they won the game that mattered.Delete
I thought the extra practice time showed up all over the field, although I'm not sure that Oregon really adhered to the limit. I don't think I would have. When asked, I think I'd tell em, "This is the National Championship game. I'll be damned if i'm going to play it with one hand tied behind my back. If Urban has no limit on practice, I have no limit on practice. I'm not about to lose this game because we started classes and OSU hasn't. Ain't nobody going to class this week anyway.
Then I'd quote Cardale who made the point ever so eloquently,"We ain't come to play school."
That's definitely true about winning the one that mattered! It's the only one that does!Delete
My point is, though. That all these people that keep getting worried that OSU is too far in front of us to catch, or that we won't be able to compete with them are crazy.
Like I mentioned, Bama would beat them in a series, and so would a few other teams, maybe not a ton.
OSU with urban and unlimited time to prepare....that won't always be the case.
And we've seen Urban at his best before and look what happened.
Bottom line, im not concerned about OSU getting away from us talent wise. Every single team can and will be beat at some point. Im just biding my time until we can join in the conversation.
I can't say that I agree regarding Alabama. OSU can run the football and have demonstrated to my satisfaction that they can run it on anybody ..... this year. The great thing about college football is that they're gonna have to prove it again next year.Delete
I can agree with you in that I'm unconcerned about the Buckeyes getting away from us. I listened to Valenti go on for five or so minutes this afternoon about Urban Meyer being invincible and I thought to myself as I turned that fool off, that Pete Carrol was invincible there for a while over at USC too. Somebody beat him finally. Who was it that pulled that one off? Hmmmmm.
Oh yeah, it was our guy.
I do believe that Sparty is scared witless ..... of everybody. They have never quite been able to believe they were good. Now they see the world as they know it to really be, coming at em from every direction. And while MSU is not a bastion of academic excellence, it is a major university and as such, your garden variety Sparty understands full well that, that regression to the mean thing can be a real bitch.
OSU ran the football and in so doing controlled the clock and the game. I could almost hear Woody's maniacal cackle rising softly from the grave.ReplyDelete
Does anyone else feel like OsU was worlds better with Jones than JT? OsU struggled in some games this year, including UM, maybe Purdue too? Jones has a big arm and is a rhino type runner and added a ton to beat Wisconsin, bama and Oregon decisively. I know Barrett's numbers were gaudy, but jones scares me.ReplyDelete
Agree ... I can't see how OSU steps back from Jones, provided he stays. He's proven the ability to (a) handle tough teams, (b) throw downfield, and (c) get yards when needed. He is the prototype QB in Urban's system ... a bulldozer FB type that can throw the ball.Delete