Archives for August 2017

Recap: #2 Ohio State VS Indiana

And just like that, the offseason is officially over.  The 2017 CFB season has begun and Ohio State opens up against an Indiana Hoosiers team that is looking for an upset win at home.  Mike Weber did not make the start because he is banged up, but his replacement, J.K. Dobbins will become the second true freshman to start for the Buckeyes.

First Half

With the game underway, the Buckeyes started off hot, but the offense is still a work in progress. J.T. Barrett, on his first drive, took the ball 66 yards and the drive ended with a 27-yard FG to put the Buckeyes up 3-0.

Richard Lagow wasted no time to respond as they took the ball 87-yards for a TD by Ian Thomas. The highlight of the drive was a one-handed toss to Simmie Cobbs.

The Buckeye offense struggled mightily, with a lack of separation by the WR’s from the Hoosier DB’s.  O-Line play was decent during the first half, but there is some room for improvement in that department and there is a lot more to be desired.

Simmie Cobbs continued to light up the next generation of Buckeye Defensive Backs as he snagged another one-handed TD pass against Denzel Ward.  The Buckeyes should have been down 21-3, but because of a tipped pass by Kendall Sheffield, it resulted in an interception by Jordan Fuller.

The Buckeyes should have been down 21-3, but because of a tipped pass by Kendall Sheffield, it resulted in an interception by Jordan Fuller.

J.K. Dobbins was the star in the making for the Buckeyes in the first half registering 15 carries for 107 yards.  Dobbins shows the burst and the promise to become the next feature back at Ohio State.

The Rushmen are also doing their job as well as they have registered 3 sacks in the first half, keeping the Hoosier offense at bay.  Tyquan Lewis, Nick Bosa and Sam Hubbard have one a piece, but let us see if they can keep the pressure on in the second half.

Second Half

In 2016-esque fashion, the Silver Bullet placed the clamps on the Hoosier offense and Barrett turns on the offensive lightbulb as their talent and big-play abilities began to show.

Indiana started the second half only to be shut down in back-to-back drives.  Barrett’s stalled in a single drive and turned the ball over on downs before scampering into the end zone for their first lead of the game.

Lagow answered with another touchdown to his TE, but Barrett outdid Lagow with 2 touchdowns for 74-yard and 59-yard by Parris Campbell and Johnnie Dixon.  Both passes were short, but with the excellent downfield blocking and RAC ability, they both took it to the house.

With their third stringers on the Defensive Line spelling their starters, Jashon Cornell got Lagow for a strip sack and it was recovered by Jonathan Cooper.  The second turnover was important because Barrett found Binjimen Victor for an 11-yard score.

On the next offensive drive, Lagow made quite the drive, but he was then picked off by Denzel Ward for his second pick of the game, third overall.

Barrett and Ohio State piece together another scoring drive while grinding away at the clock. Antonio Williams rushes for his second score of the game to put the Buckeyes up 49-21.  Prior to the Williams touchdown, a hilarious moment was captured on National Television, as J.K. Dobbins was seen begging for that elusive TD only to get shut down by Coach Alford.

This was a measuring stick to see how far the team has come after the way things ended last season.  The offense and defense will continue to work out the kinks in the mean time.  Ohio State will prepare for another potent offense in Oklahoma.




Ohio State Projected Depth Chart 2017

With under a week left of the dreaded offseason, another year chalked full of expectation is upon us.  After a dreadful, nightmarish showing in last seasons CFB Playoff, Coach Meyer and company will prepare themselves for another run at the title.

Projected Starters for 2017:

QB:  J.T. Barrett

RB:  Mike Weber

WR:  Johnnie Dixon

WR:  Austin Mack

Slot/H-Back:  Terry McLaurin

TE:  Marcus Baugh

LT:  Jamarco Jones

LG:  Michael Jordan

C:  Billy Price

RG:  Brandon Bowen

RT:  Isaiah Prince

DE:  Sam Hubbard

DE:  Tyquan Lewis

DT:  Dre’mont Jones

DT:  Tracy Sprinkle

WLB:  Jerome Baker

MLB:  Chris Worley

SLB:  Dante Booker

CB:  Denzel Ward

CB:  Damon Arnette

Nickel:  Kendall Sheffield

S:  Damon Webb

S:  Erick Smith

K:  Sean Nuernberger

P:  Drue Chrisman

J.T. Barrett will return for the final chapter in his career.  Barrett will lead another talented offense in their quest for another title.  He will most likely hold every, if not most of Ohio State’s records and he will be able to obtain a few BIG records too.

Joe Burrow and Dwayne Haskins were neck and neck up until now, but due to an injury during practice, Haskins will serve as the backup QB.  This is a case of plain bad luck, and it really opens the door for Haskins to audition for the starting job in the 2018 season.  True Freshman Tate Martell is another interesting prospect who might just see some time during garbage time, but we will just have to see.

Weber will resume duties as the lead back of Tote Nation.  Behind him, he will have a true freshman, J.K. Dobbins to relieve him.  Dobbins has quite the following as he surpassed Antonio Williams and Demario McCall.

Zone 6 took a hit after Samuel and Brown left for the NFL, but the players that are on the team are sneaky good.  With the lack of a deep threat last season and a combination of poor play calling and the lack of confidence, the offense sputtered and was predictable.

This season will be different with Coach Wilson and Coach Day.  Both will provide a quick paced and high tempo attack that will leave opposing defenses gasping for air.  Mack, Dixon, and McLaurin are all speedsters that have big play ability and behind them are bigger stronger receivers like Victor, Harris, Grimes and Gardiner.

The O-Line returns 4 starters from last season, which helps Barrett remain upright.  The Slobs are all over 6’4″ with Price being the shortest of the bunch.  Prince was a liability, earned the title of starter at RG, but he is wedged between Price and Prince just in case he needs help.

The D-Line or the Rushmen returned the starters from last year and their backups.  They will terrorize teams with relentless pursuit.  Baker, Worley and a healthy Booker return to bolster their LB group.

The secondary proves to be of concern because they basically have to reload once again, after losing three first rounders to the NFL Draft.  Damon Webb and Denzel Ward return, but Damon Arnette, Kendall Sheffield will be the next two corners up, while Erick Smith will assume the other Safety spot.

Overall, I think the Buckeyes have what it takes to win the BIG onward to another Playoff berth, but crazy thing could happen as the season develops.  I will watch it as it progresses, but the talent is certainly there.  The drama has yet to unfold, but with the season fast approaching, I cannot wait to go through the emotions with you.



Preview: Ohio State vs Indiana


When:  Thursday, August 31st @ 6:00 PM on ESPN

Where:  The Rock, Bloomington, Indiana

With the 2017 College Football season fast approaching, I could not help but preview opening day of the upcoming season.  After my brief break due to my move back to the states, I am proud to say that I am back MOTSAG faithful!

To open the 2017 season, Ohio State will collide with a seasoned Indiana team that is capable of putting up huge numbers on opposing defenses, but that was under former Head Coach Kevin Wilson, who coincidentally was dismissed by Indiana and is now the Offensive Coordinator at Ohio State.
In an unusual turn of events and because of some luck, Coach Meyer jumped at the chance to improve their offensive deficiencies by employing Wilson.  Wilson has a proven track record of reinventing offenses under his watch with stints at Miami (OH), at Northwestern and at Oklahoma. He will bring a quick tempo attack to Ohio State, and it is what the Buckeyes lacked after Texas Coach Tom Herman left.
The search for improvements did not stop there, as Coach Meyer plucked another young coach from the NFL ranks to bolster their staff in Quarterback Coach Ryan Day.  Day, a Chip Kelly disciple, will be tasked to improve the QB play.  Day and Wilson will work side by side to resurrect an anemic Buckeye offense that was shut out in last years CFB Playoffs.
J.T. Barrett will lead the team for his last season donning the Scarlet and Gray for a Thursday game at Bloomington, Indiana.  With him, he has 4 returning starters along the O-Line, but a new RG that has yet to be announced.  Bruising RB Mike Weber returns and TE Marcus Baugh is back as well.
Ohio State will break in many first year starters at WR, with Dixon, Campbell, and McLaurin leading the way.  Ohio State also has a mix of older and younger players at the position vying for playing time in Hill, Mack, Victor, Harris, and Grimes, so we will have to see how the offense adapts to their newer, faster system.
The defense returns the majority of the front seven and their backups.  The biggest question would be the secondary, which lost 3 first rounders to the NFL Draft.  The projected starters at CB will likely be Arnette, Sheffield, and Ward with Okudah as the fourth man up.  While Wade, Williamson and Riep will be looking for playing time in during garbage time.
At the Safety spots, Webb is the only returning starter, while the other spot is up for grabs between Erick Smith and Jordan Fuller, who no matter who wins, both will play this season.  Both bring different playing styles, but both would do well when called upon.
Indiana has a bit of a QB battle going as Richard Lagow is trying to fight off a Redshirt FR Peyton Ramsey, who did well during the spring game.  They will have 5 returning starters on offense and a BIG leading 9 on defense led by Tegray Scales.  Scales will attempt to stymie his former Head Coaches new team in the season opener.
Prediction:  44-20 (Ohio State)
The Barrett led offense will shine in the opener, with obvious improvements across the board.  It will be a balanced attack with 200+ yards passing and at least 100 on the ground.  The WR’s will be the biggest improvement and the TE will be featured more frequently than the previous seasons.  O-Line will improve as well with Prince and the new RG being the key players, but also the key matchup.  
The defense will be stout, but the secondary with the new starters will give up a few huge chunk plays before the lock in.  The Rushmen package will be lethal the LB’s will give Indiana fits.  I look for them to have a least 2 sacks and a forced fumble, while the secondary snags 2 interceptions. Scales will lead the defensive charge and he will be a problem.  He will be near the ball the entire game.  

Why I believe Ezekiel Elliott is Innocent Based On Evidence!

First, let me just be emphatic in this statement. I am an OSU fan through and through. I am as biased as they possibly come. I also have zero tolerance for violence of any kind. I detest it and truly believe their is no place in this world for any kind of violence. Having said that let me share what I have learned through a collection of the evidence provided by media and lawyers. Which is far less than the NFL and Prosecutors had access too no doubt.

So how did Zeke get here? Well you see he is as visible as anyone in the NFL right now. Zeke has made himself visible by his play on the field and his infectious smile off of it. He also has put himself in situations that are high risk of negative situations. That happens. To everyone. Being a member of the Dallas Cowboys also puts a spotlight on him like no other team in sports.

Is Ezekiel Elliott guilty of anything? The answer to the best of my knowledge is no. The actuality is though that it doesn’t matter. Society labels. They get out their pitchforks and create mobs out of thin air. He is a victim of society. Society says if a woman says you hit them then you absolutely did. Society says if you are accused of anything you and guilty until proven innocent. That is ass-backwards. Alas though this is the way society works and Zeke needs to learn that and do whatever he can to keep society off his back.

Let’s tackle this domestic violence situation now. The evidence provided by the accuser is suspect at best. She claims to have been beaten over 5 days several times and also claims these weren’t the only times he did it to her.
Battered women absolutely can and do return to their abusers. When they do though in general they are very submissive and hide the abuse. They don’t try to get their friends to lie and say that their boyfriend hit them in front of them. Which is exactly what this girl did.

You can go here to TMZ to see the alleged bruises. In the pictures you can see lots of bruises some appear much older than others. You can see a picture of her hand which is clearly the result of her punching someone. Which goes hand in hand with the accusation that she was in a bar fight the week before with another female. Look at the pictures and judge for yourself. They aren’t the typical pictures of a battered woman. They certainly aren’t the pictures of a 125 pound woman beaten several times over a week by a 225 pound athlete. They appear to me to be the result of a typical girl fight. Lots of grabbing and wrestling and very little punching.

Listen to the 9-1-1 call listen to her voice and her words. Tell me this is the response of a battered woman.

Read the text messages where she asks her friend to lie for her and say she saw Ezekiel Elliott grab her and drag her and beat her.

The totality of this situation leads me to honestly believe Zeke is innocent. Could he be guilty? Yes. Is there enough evidence to say he is by even a 51% to 49% basis? Nope. The Columbus Police and the Franklin County Prosecutors have said the case doesn’t warrant an arrest or trial. Why? Because they don’t believe the “victim”.

Lastly, Info has come out today that NFL commish Roger Goodale did not attend a single meeting with Zeke or the accuser yet still was the judge, jury, and executioner should send you into a rage. The NFL decided this case well before the alleged incident ever happened. The day they received criticism for their handling of Ray Rice they knew they had to fix that image and they are doing it on the back of Ezekiel Elliott.

Until the NFL produces some actual evidence to support their 6 game suspension there is only one thing to say. Shame on the NFL.