OSU/Illinois — Semi-live update

OSU Football

End of First Half

Score: 17-0
Tressel has reverted to the famous Tresselball of old… grinding power football with fantastic defense and special teams. Nice 50+ yard FG from Pettrey. Nice half from Smith (except for the intentional grounding play). Worst thing about the half was yet another fumble from Beanie. Ugh.

OSU has twice the time of possession, twice the offensive snaps, and three times the yards as Illinois. Another dominant game… even though Illinois’ defense is hitting harder than any defense I’ve seen all year.

End of game

Final Score: 17-10

Well, we were worried that this might be a “trap game,” and it sure was a defense-fest. A bit disgusting that – for the entire second half – Tressel only ran two plays. Pittman up the middle, and Pittman up the middle. Guess what, coach? Illinois had 10 guys in the box. Pittman could have had antigravity sneakers and not got more than 1.8 ypc. Where did the options go? Where did the screens go? Seriously. How come the only passes in the second half were low-percentage rainbow passes on third-and-forever? Disgusting.

BTW: We know that Beanie was benched after his fumble, but where was Maurice Wells? Are we really that thin at tailback that Pittman has to rush against a 10-man front 32 times? And since Illinois was committed to stopping Pittman, how come not one play-action pass was tried in the second half? Defensively, why were the second/third stringers in for Illinois’ last TD drive? It boggles the mind. Very uncharacteristic questionable coaching from Tressel & crew.

Having said that, I’m glad that OSU got its “close” game out of the way. Every team competing for the title has one… and I’m glad it was Illinois this year (and not a pathetic team like Ball State). OSU still dominated the first half, and got the job done on the road against a team that was playing way above its talent level.

Deep breath… exhale.

Final thought: Today’s game was the worst thing that could happen to Northwestern.


  1. buckeye up north says

    I’m still not breathing! Tressel has a lot of explaining to do! Makes you wonder(worry) what he has planned for the Michigan game. I’ll start breathing(or die) after that one!

  2. Maurice wells has been injured for the past few weeks and wasnt available for todays game.

  3. um, maurice was in the minnesota game, where he ran straight into a lineman and laid HIMSELF out. it looked kinda funny but i felt bad for him.

  4. Michigan Dave says

    #1 and #2 sure didn’t look like it today. Michigan’s offense gave away 9 points and then Carr decided to put in some second team players on D. Illinois suprised me. Is this the same team that lost to Rutgers 33 to nil? I did not expect Smith to get hit like that.

  5. Dave – Yes, it’s the team that lost to Rutgers… but also the team that almost beat Wisconsin last week. They’re a different team since they went with the new QB and the option.

    Illinois/OSU is always a close game (the rivalry is not as big as, but goes back farther than, the OSU/UM rivalry). Still, today’s lack of production lays square on the shoulders of the offensive play callers. Nothing but Pittman runs for the entire second half (other than third and long) is disgusting. Tressel was clearly trying to run the clock down after taking a 17 point lead.

  6. Michigan Dave says

    Good point about Illinois changing the offense.

    Ohio State didn’t make the massive offensive errors that Michigan did. If we give away 9 points to you guys it will probably be a beatdown. I think the place where OSU didn’t execute well today was on the offensive line in the pass protection department.

    I really want a #1 vs. #2 game on the 18th, but I think that both Indiana and Northwestern are capable of being very difficult opponents at home. I know for sure that Indiana can’t be taken lightly. They put up over 30 on both Illinois and Iowa.

  7. Baby Jesus says

    Illinois was beating PSU at PSU, was up on Wisconsin, and beat MSU before they went into a free for all. So this shouldn’t be a surprise, plus it didn’t help that coach went all conservative in the second half. I mean we were putting the whooping on em in the first half and it easily could of been 24-0, if not for the fumble…But I’m thinking this is bait and switch play calling for Michigan. I expect to see alot of play action for that defense…..

  8. Woody Hayes says

    Part of me was actually hoping for a close game before Michigan.

  9. Woody – I totally agree. Get it out of the way now, like I wrote earlier. And, as far as “close” games go, at least it was nowhere near as nail-biting as the 2002 Purdue game!

    “Holy Buckeye!”

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