After narrowly defeating Navy 31-27 in the season opener and with USC coming to Columbus for game two, are the Buckeyes headed for a rude awakening?
Every year the local media makes us believe Ohio State is loaded. It is not that hard to do with all those scarlet and gray glasses in Columbus, Ohio. The Buckeyes have done very well under Jim Tressell going 84-19 with five Big Ten Championships and one National Championship. While succeeding former coach John Cooper has Tressell raised the bar so high that expectations are sometimes unrealistic?
Here's a news flash, Ohio State does not get all the great players coming out of high school. Ohio State has done very well inside the Big Ten but when stepping outside the league against the likes of USC, Florida, LSU and Texas, the Buckeyes have struggled. You have to take into consideration the Big Ten has not been as strong lately as it once was.
This year's Buckeye team will take some time to develop and should be good but may not be ready for USC just yet. The Navy game showed a reoccurring weakness that has plagued the Buckeyes for a few years now, the offensive line is not very good. This year they do not have a Beanie Wells to blast through the line. Even Terrell Pryor will need some blocking against the Trojans.
While I feel the Buckeyes will be contenders for the Big Ten Title this year I look at this team as a team with huge questions. Can the offensive line improve and will Pryor continue to develop his decision making? Do the Buckeyes have a running back that can get the tough yards? How long will it take the linebackers and secondary to play up to past standards?
Ohio State has a lot of growing to do as a team and may get there, but they are not a top ten team in the nation now, if ever this year.