Preview: Indiana Hoosiers

The season is half over, gentle readers. Let’s hope that OSU plays the second half of its season like it plays the second half of its games. If so, the rest of the Big 10 is in serious trouble.

This week’s sacrificial lamb: The Indiana Hoosiers.

When Indiana has the ball

Interestingly, the Hoosier’s worst offensive performance this year was a 24-point outing against FCS Indiana State in their season opener. Since then they’ve been averaging 35 points a game, including 27 points against the Big10′s leading defense.

Put simply, this offense can move the ball very efficiently when it’s sufficiently motivated to do so. To do this, Indiana utilizes the short passing game, otherwise known as “Fickell’s Kryptonite.” At 7.1 yards per completion, they match up almost identically to Miami (OH), California, and UCF – all teams that had no problem taking advantage of OSU’s weak linebacker play and soft zone cushions.

However, past performance may be misleading in this case. The OSU defense of the past two weeks has found an identity that wasn’t present in those early games. Lost in the noise of the offensive explosion last week was the Buckeyes’ solid defensive performance against the Big 10′s leading offense. In particular, OSU’s linebacker play has improved.

On paper, the Hoosiers offensive gameplan matches up well against the Buckeyes. Should they overcome the psychological aspects of being a major underdog, they could cause OSU some headaches.

However, none of this matters because…

When OSU has the ball

This season, the only thing that has stopped the OSU offense has been its own mistakes. Those mistakes have come in two forms: psychological, when they just don’t care and start slow; and turnovers in or near the red zone, which have ended at least half a dozen scoring drives in the first six games.

Even through those faults, however, Braxton & Co are averaging 39 points a game. Last week the offense scored 49 points in three quarters, and did it without breaking a sweat.

The Hoosier’s 99th ranked rushing defense will not present much of a challenge to Ohio State.

Prediction
If we assume that OSU will come out lethargic again, as they have in four of their six games, Indiana may be motivated to make it interesting going into the half. But we all know how this one ends:

OSU 56-24

What say you?

Comments

  1. I am really hoping this is the game that they put forth a full effort for 4 full qtrs. I also heard how much Coach Meyer respects and likes Coach Wilson so I don’t think he will run the score up to the 60s or 70s lol.

    My score prediction is OSU 49 – IU 13

  2. I don’t see a high scoring game, but I can help but think that 400 yards rushing are not out of the question. Just based on that, OSU scores 6 times.

    OSU 42
    IU 17

  3. Indiana is on the road…at home…gotta love it. OSU seems to play really well during primetime under Meyer. He will have them ready to go, for sure. I cannot see Meyer running Miller all that often and look for him to ask Miller to throw the ball more. I just don’t see Meyer using Miller to run in games were OSU is highly favored. Think UAB in this one. I see a bit of a lackluster start (big shocker) and OSU running Miller only when they have to. The offense is getting there…still hasn’t played a complete game yet and that is scary.

    OSU: 31
    Indian: 17

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