Welcome to the Open Thread of week 4, with your Buckeyes starting Big Ten competition against the Wildcats.
Yeah, yeah, “NW lost to Duke last week, so OSU will beat them by 432 points.” Uh, probably not, and here are a few reasons why:
- First, when you hit bottom, you tend to bounce. It’s an old rule-of-thumb that teams that are surprised with unexpected losses to inferior competition often come out swinging the following week.
- Second, it’s the Big Ten opener for both teams. How teams play in preseason is totally different than how they play against conference opponents.
- Third, two words: Tyrell Sutton. NW didn’t have the injured first-stringer available last week, and if they had, they’d be 3-0 just like the Buckeyes. Sutton’s one of the better RBs in the Big Ten, he’s a leader for the team, and he’ll be in the ‘Shoe this weekend.
Of course, none of this means that NW will earn the victory, but any who expect it to be a cakewalk based on NW’s performance against Duke are mistaken. Pat Fitzgerald is doing a fine job in steadily increasing his team’s respectability.
Questions for the MotSaG crew (and as usual, feel free to chime in with a comment):
- Final score?
- How many rushing yards will OSU’s D allow (+/- 100)?
- How many pushups did players on the OSU special teams have to do this week to pay for last week’s breakdowns?
- Will we see Brandon Saine (#3 RB) sent into the game before Mo Wells (#2 RB) this week?
Score: OSU, 34-6.
Rushing yards: Under, ~45. (Sutton will earn perhaps 75, but sacks & TFLs will reduce NW’s total).
Pushups: 500 (100 extra per day). Thou shalt not undermine the central strategy of Tresselball.
Saine moves up on depth chart: Too early in the season for Tressel to violate his own hierarchical tendencies, especially for the first conference game of the season. Saine will have to keep up his level for a few more weeks before he moves ahead of Mo. I still think he scores another TD, though.
Score: OSU, 41-3. I underestimated the offense last week. Not this time.
Rushing yards: Under, 70 or so. This D is too stout against the run.
Pushups: I already mentioned the long snapping woes. I think the special teams are still doing pushups as we speak.
Saine moves up on depth chart: Depth chart, Smepth fart. They are meaningless trifles that lesser coaches resort to when they lack a backbone. Tressel will insert the best player for the situation. Saine is a better running back that Wells, period. I love Mo Wells and I appreciate what he’s done, but he is one-dimensional. Saine is the real deal and the one-two punch of Beanie and Brandon is sick.