“ Hell, there are no rules here – we’re trying to accomplish something…” ~ Thomas Edison
Leave it to Thomas Edison, an Ohioan and considered “The Father Of Invention”, to appropriately summarize the goals for the 2016 Ohio State football team. No rules – just accomplish something.
“Something” is a pretty vague and open concept. Considering how much talent Ohio State lost to graduation and the NFL Draft, considering how I have written throughout spring practice about how 44 players on Ohio State’s roster are either redshirt freshmen or true freshmen…Damn right, Mr. Edison. There are no rules. Ohio State fans are just looking to see what this team can accomplish against a much tougher schedule in 2016 than 2015, with tremendously talented, yet inexperienced, players.
Indiana Hoosiers (Game 5)
2016 OSU Opponent Ranking: 9 out of 12
Players Recruited By Ohio State: OL Tim Gardner, DB Tyler Green, and DB Jayme Thompson. Gardner was signed as part of Ohio State’s 2013 recruiting class, but left the program after a disciplinary incident in the summer of 2013. Gardner played in eleven games for Indiana in 2015. Tyler Green could technically be considered recruited by Ohio State, yet did not sign with Ohio State in 2015. Green played in eight games as a true freshman for Indiana in 2015. Jayme Thompson was also part of Ohio State’s 2013 recruiting class, like Tim Gardner. Thompson redshirted in 2013, transferred after the 2013 season to Iowa Western C.C. for 2014 and 2015, and signed with Indiana for the 2016 season.
Game Date: October 8, 2016
Kickoff Time: TBA
Location: Ohio Stadium
Rationale For The Ranking: Truth be told, I struggled with where to place Indiana on this opponent ranking. Think about how the games against Indiana have gone since Ohio State Head Coach Urban Meyer took over the program in 2012 – A nailbiter that went down to the wire in Bloomington in 2012, 52-49. Ohio State rolled Indiana in Ohio Stadium in 2013, 42-14. Ohio State has to rally behind Jalin Marshall’s performance in 2014, 42-27. Ohio State survives Indiana last year in Bloomington, 34-27. Why not rank Indiana higher?
Here is why – Nate Sudfeld and Jordan Howard have both departed Indiana for the NFL. While Indiana returns quarterback Zander Diamont, who tormented the Buckeyes last season, I believe Ohio State will have too much on both sides of the ball for Indiana to be able to keep pace as they have in recent seasons.
Prediction: Ohio State will be coming off a home game versus Rutgers, and will be tempted to be looking ahead to two tough road trips on the horizon with Wisconsin and Penn State. Even with the road trips looming, Coach Meyer and his staff will be able to remind his players about Ohio State has had extremely tough, close calls against the Hoosiers, and I believe Ohio State will come out with a more focused approach more like the 2013 game than the 2014 or 2015 contests.