Archives for April 2013

Landscaping Duty For Gray

Scarlet: 31

Gray: 14

Spring

This thing called a spring football game is simply just a faint shadow of what we typically call football. Most spring games are nothing more than passing scrimmages with QB’s wearing caution, did murder me jerseys, with running backs used for eye candy rather than carrying the ball. Braxton Miller threw for 217 yards and two first half touchdowns while running for a third TD in the 2nd half before being sat down before the fourth quarter. Miller displayed something he has struggled with over his first two season. Touch. Miller started off the game with a 49 yard completion to Even Spencer and capped the drive with a masterful scoring strike to Devin Smith, using a beautiful touch on a lofted ball, while scrambling and rolling to his right.

Miller Spring

Kenny Guiton looked solid, throwing for 150 yards and a touchdown while playing for both teams. It’s safe to say Braxton Millers starting job is locked down pretty tightly. After last years spring game there were people clamoring for Guiton to start over Miller. Guiton may still be the nations best backup QB and with an injury prone Braxton Miller could be called upon to win a game or two. Cardale Jones saw some action and looked good and terrible. He showed  a strong arm and good running skill but lost two fumbles and threw an interception forcing a ball to Michael Thomas. Thomas had another good spring game catching 7 balls for 79 yards and a TD. He showed good wiggle after the catch and proved to be difficult to take down.

We did not get to see any of the diamond formation today as I’m sure that will be held under wraps until the fall come the Buffalo game. Plus OSU didn’t really run the ball all that much today. There were 44 combined rushes today and that includes QB’s getting sacked. If QB sacks were included it would have been 62 pass plays to 33 running plays. All in all there were 11 sacks…4 by Adolphus Washington and 3 by Noah Spence. The right tackle position is going to be an interesting one for OSU moving forward. Chase Farris struggled today blocking both Spence and Washington and really did look bad at times. Hopefully that speaks to how good the Buckeys starting DE’s are.

Defensively Curtis Grant had 10 tackles a sack and two really big hits on Philly Brown over the middle, probably the two hit’s of the day. But defensively the day belonged to Spence and Washington who put constant pressure on Scarlet QB’s all day.

What I liked about this years game is the fact that it matched up OSU’s #1 offense vs. OSU’s #1 defense. The #1 offense and the #2 defense were on Scarlet while the #2 offense and the #1 defense was on Gray. Miller, unlike last year was matched up with players that he actually will be playing with.

I really didn’t think there was a spring game popcorn fart superstar this year…maybe Chris Fields as he scored 2 TD’s…one for each team. I doubt he will be as impactful next year.

Bring on the fall…

 

Spring Game Live In Game Chat

Hey Denard…

Fall Is Coming

But before fall settles upon central Ohio, the foundation of autumns champions are crafted in March and April. The sharp squeak of vigorous writing on a grease board,  A violent crunch echoes as linebacker meets tailback. Tightly spiralling footballs thrown with precision find their targets once again. whistles blowing, coaches yelling…especially coach Coombs, Braxton Miller juking someone out of his shorts. Noah Spence attempting to murder Braxton Miller for said juking. These are the sights and sounds of Spring practice. Ohio State started spring practice in March this year, spreading out their practices over nearly a month.

Game of Thrones

A year ago Urban Meyer took over a Ohio State’s Commander In Chief and lead them to a 12-0 season, the Buckeyes first undefeated season since they won the National Title ten years ago. During last years spring practice, Urban Meyer installed his famous spread option offense. He called it a clown show. While it may have been a clown show in the spring it was certainly anything but that come fall. OSU’s offense improved it’s national scoring rank from 79th in 2011 to 21st in 2012. Total yardage rank also drastically changed as OSU went from 107th in 2011 to 46th in 2012. One area the Buckeyes didn’t drastically improve in was the passing game. In 2011 Ohio State was ranked 115th nationally. Last year they improved, but only slightly to 105th…adding an additional 51 yards per game through the air.

Urban Meyer would certainly like to improve upon that mark as Ohio State will certainly be favorites to push for a National Title this year. In an effort to improve his mechanics Braxton Miller has worked this offseason with QB guru’s, sherpa’s, Ted Danson, Kelly Lebrock, Dr. Jack Ramsey and  a Dire Wolf…Grey Wind I believe. Thus far the reports have all been stellar. Miller is drawing rave reviews from people that have watched him play. The word Heisman has been brought up half a hundred times.

Spring practice has been injury free for the most part with only a few bumps and bruises along the way. The OSU offense has added the diamond formation to it’s repertoire along with a base defense of 4-2-5. Former 5 star linebacker recruit Curtis Grant has been named the starter at middle linebacker by Urban Meyer, though with a base 4-2-5 defense he won’t see the field as often as he would like. Young pups Brionte Dunn and Warren Ball have made a name for themselves this spring ripping off big runs consistently. Tyvis Powell has made a name for himself playing in the secondary. Could be OSU’s next “star.” Reports on Noah Spence has been that he is unblock-able coming off the end.

What to expect from the spring game:

  • Passing, passing and more passing. Much like last years Scarlet and Gray game, OSU will throw the ball…an awful lot. Again, this is the weakness of the offense and something it desperately needs to work on.
  • Quick whistles on both Braxton Miller and Kenny Guiton. They will both be in black jerseys and not allowed to be hit, much to the chagrin of Noah Spence.
  • Consistent pass rush by Spence and Washington along with some others.
  • Will we see a lot of the diamond formation? Urban Meyer loved what the 49ers and Redskins did with it last year and will look to unveil it with Miller running it.
  • Will Urban Meyer have a pre game drill like he did last year to pump up the crowd and his players?
  • Who will be the spring game hero? Every year there is a player that emerges after having a HUGE spring game. Upon said players rise in popularity, there is a tidal wave of forums gossip, twitter talk and unending hope that OSU has somehow, some way found the next diamond in the rough superstar. Last year it was Michael Thomas who had a huge 12 catch game for the Scarlet team and everyone thought he would make noise come the fall, including me. He finished last year with 3 catches for 22 yards…another spring game popcorn fart superstar. Hell, I remember Joe Bauserman having a good spring game and people actually saying he should start over Terrelle Pryor because of it.

One of my complaints last year was that Braxton Miller didn’t get to play with many of his skill position players as they draft teams a few days before the game. I’d love to see Miller grouped with some if not most of the WR’s he will be throwing to come fall.

What say you Buckeye nation? What are you looking forward to? Who will be this years spring game superstar? And more importantly…

Will Ohio State win?

cat dun

In Case You Missed It

OSU LogoIn case you missed it is Men of the Scarlet and Gray’s semi-weekly look at items that would interest the casual and hard-core Ohio State fan, be they news items, interesting blog posts or funny memes you probably saw on Reddit last week. It’s all here and it’s all for you. Have a tip that should be included in the next ICYMI? Send it our way!

Michael Thomas hopes to make bigger a contribution this year

At last year’s spring game Michael Thomas made quite a name for himself, catching 12 passes and looking like the answer the Buckeyes needed for a receiving core that lacked depth. However, Thomas would fail to live up to those expectations as his grand total in 2012 was 3 catches for 22 yards. Receiver’s coach Zach Smith thinks that was a blessing in disguise as Thomas might have become complacent with his early success. Perhaps that underwhelming season will provide a spark towards big things this season. Early signs are good as word coming from spring practice indicates Thomas has been catching deep balls and made an excellent one handed catch for a touchdown despite pass interference.

Good news on the rectuiting front

The Buckeyes have done a great job of keeping of the top talent in-state and that was reinforced as Kyle Berger committed to Ohio State. Berger, a 4* prospect according to Rivals is the first linebacker to commit for the 2014 class. In getting Berger the Buckeyes not only locked up a key in-state player, they also denied TTUN who was Berger’s most likely next choice.

Ohio State assistant to be next FGCU coach?

Not much to say here but Buckeye assistant coach Chris Jent has been linked with the now vacant head coach job in Dunk City.

Former Buckeye Jim Cordle resigned by Giants

Jim Cordle who played center at Ohio State has been resigned by the Giants.

Nick Saban shares Woody Hayes story

Saban, who way back when was the defensive backs coach under Earl Bruce related a story about how Woody Hayes once inspired the team before playing TTUN by citing America’s win in the Pacific during World War II and how because of all the adversity against them The Game represented a huge opportunity for the team. The Buckeyes would go on to win that game 14-9. Funnily enough, Saban would be fired less than a month later allegedly because of his failure to get a certain recruit. Could that have made Saban the excellent recruiter he is today?

Michigan….Hahahahahahahaha!!!

Michigan’s title hopes have been Spiked

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(via sportsMonkey’s TV app thingy)

Ohio State lands recruit no. 7

OSU FootballWell it has only been 3 days since our last recruit landed and after a huge weekend it is fitting that they started off the weekend with a commit and ended it with a commit. It just happens that both recruits are LBers and thats not a horrible way to bookend the big weekend they had. The best part about the newest commit is that he was high on TTUNs big board and Coach Meyer and his staff was able to sway him away from Coach Hoke. Which of course has gotten TTUN fans in a tizzy and that is always fun. So here he is….

Kyle Berger

Kyle Berger announced he has committed to Ohio State via his Twitter account.

Kyle Berger is a 6’3″ 205 lbs 4 star OLB from Cleveland, Ohio. Kyle is one of the top players in Ohio and one of the best prospects in the country. He brings a lot of speed and toughness and has the ability to rush the QB or drop back into pass coverage on TEs. Most importantly for OSU fans is he fills a spot of need as OSU is thin at LBs and will take several in this class. Taking him out of the grasp of TTUNs best recruiter in Greg Mattison is just icing on the cake. Rivals ranks him a 4 star and the 204th best prospect in the country. 247sports ranks him a 4 star and the 246th best recruit in the country. Scout ranks him a 4 star and the 2nd best OLB in the country. ESPN doesnt have him ranked as of yet. If you want to see his highlight video click on THIS LINK.

Brutus gets destroyed in practice

BrutusBrutus took Braxton Miller’s spot at quarterback during Student Appreciation Day and it did not end too well… Lets just say we do not have a quarterback controversy in Columbus.

 

Ohio State lands a Big One

OSU FootballThe 2014 class for the Ohio State Buckeyes is going to be a fill the need type class. You will see a lot of Offensive Lineman and LineBackers in this class. You will also see some Safeties with both starting safeties set to graduate after this year. With this newest commit they got a guy who could potentially depending on how his body fills out could play any of those 3 positions which in and of itself is insane. This kid is blowing up lately and could very well become one of the best recruits in the 2014 class when all is said and done.

Sam Hubbard announced he was committed to Ohio State via his twitter account.

hubb_original

Sam Hubbard is a 6’6″ 225 lbs 4 star Athlete from Cincinnati, Ohio. Up until 2 days ago Sam was a commit to Notre Dame to play Lacrosse but decommitted shortly before coming on a visit to Ohio State today. it didn’t take him long to accept an offer to join the 2014 class and sounds like He really found his home now. Sam is listed as an Athlete listed as a Safety or LBer but based on his size at 6’6″ he could if bulked up be an amazing OT as well or play on the DL. His potential is unlimited at this point the only question is will he live up to it. 247sports ranks him a 4 star and the 239th best prospect in the country. ESPN doesn’t have him ranked as of yet. Rivals has him ranked as a 3 star. Scout has him ranked as a 4 star and the 18th best OLB in the country. Below you can see his highlight video.