Photo of Dan Herron running (courtesy of the offensive line) by Jeff Mills.
Another game, another shutout. But since the Buckeyes only won by 30, that should be good for a 3-spot drop in the polls. The Buckeyes keep up this pace and they are liable to drop out of the top 25 completely.
The Buckeyes scored 30 points and only had 13 passes in the game. First of all, you don't see stats like that very often. Secondly, if you can score 30 points when everyone on the other side knows what you are going to do, you must be doing something right. The Buckeyes had 3 players (Herron, Saine, Pryor) average at least 5.4 yards per carry. That tells you that the offensive line did its job. OK, so maybe it was the kind of offense that set football back 30 years, but it worked. If the Buckeyes can roll up 30 points using Army's playbook, I'm all for it.
Are you kidding me? Two consecutive shutouts. That in itself is incredible. But take an even longer view and you'll see that OSU's opponents have scored 18 points. In other words, in that span, the defense has surrendered nearly half as many points as that team up north allowed to Indiana today. Oh, and Brian Rolle is a freak. Ditto Doug Worthington who got a sack by jumping over an offensive lineman. That was the best play of the game. And no, I won't be jumping off the Thad Gibson bandwagon anytime soon. And how about that interception by Lawrence Wilson. He was held, tipped the ball and intercepted it. Very impressive.
Well, it didn't take long to see the bad on offense. One yard on the first series? Way to keep Juice Williams off the field. Pryor is, well, how to say this delicately? He is still very raw. I'm not sure he has a grasp on when to run and when to make plays with his arm. His throws often have very little on them, and he makes far too many poor decisions. Like that play late in the game when the Buckeyes were driving and TP nearly threw an interception at the goal line.
There is not a lot to put here after another shutout. That being said, Chimdi Chekwa is shaky at best. He actually did the right thing by committing pass interference late in the 1st half (after Ray Small's fumbled punt return), but I'm not sure it was what he really meant to do.
This game is proof that a 30-point shutout does not equal perfection. The Buckeyes lost 2 of 3 fumbles. Ray Small's fumble was more than a little nerve-wracking. That was the sort of play that can turn a game. Luckily it didn't, but not for a lack of trying. On the next play Juice went deep and got a pass interference call against Chekwa.
Under the Radar Player of the Game
There are a lot of good candidates here. Todd Denlinger had some really solid stops in the first half. Any of the defenders mentioned in The Good would be a decent selection. However, when an offense rolls up more than 200 rushing yards, you have to give credit to the offensive line, and that is exactly what I am doing with the UtR players of the game.