Instant Analysis: Even though Ohio State defeated Illinois 30-0, and has now had two straight shutout victories, I am not feeling entirely comfortable with Ohio State as they have officially begun their Big Ten conference play.
Ohio State offensively still looks very inconsistent, largely because of QB Terrelle Pryor.
Yes, I know...people are going to say, "Chip, they won 30-0! Why are you complaining?!?". I am not complaining, but I do believe there are areas of concern.
First, the aforementioned Terrelle Pryor. Pryor still is taking way too long in the pocket, waiting for plays to develop.
So many opportunities for positive yardage were squandered by Pryor as he tries to show people that he is a quarterback and not just a tremendous athlete.
Pryor nearly threw an interception by throwing a pass late down the middle when he felt pressure.
Against a better defensive team, or perhaps on a day where the weather is not as much of a factor as it was today in Ohio Stadium, that is a pass that will be intercepted and thus take points off the board for Ohio State.
The Ohio State running game is slowly making improvement.
Hopefully, Daniel "Boom" Herron will be able to play next week at Indiana. Even so, Brandon Saine is showing me that he has fully recovered from last season's injuries. True freshman Jordan Hall also shows a nice burst.
The defensive line, led by Thaddeus Gibson, was impressive.
Illinois was never truly able to get anything established today, and Gibson was a major reason why. He gets my vote for player of the game today.
I did not like Ohio State throwing the ball into the end zone for a touchdown when already up on Illinois 23-0.
The fact that Ohio State took a time-out before throwing the ball to Dane Sanzenbacher made it worse. If Ohio State had scored a touchdown running the ball with Jordan Hall, that would not have been bad in my estimation; if Illinois, or any team, cannot stop the run, there is not much Ohio State can do about that.
Throwing the ball into the end zone when already up 23-0 with the game well in hand under a couple minutes just smells of poor sportsmanship to me.
Major thumbs down to Kurt Coleman for spearing Illinois QB Eddie McGee.
I hope Coach Tressel tells Mr. Coleman to sit down for the first quarter of next week's game against Indiana, otherwise, The Big Ten may intervene like they did for Michigan a few weeks back.
A win is a win, and Ohio State is now 3-1. Indiana will be an interesting venue, as Ohio State fans traditionally make the trek to Bloomington and pack the stands.
Indiana should be a fun game to watch, as Indiana lost a tough one today at Michigan after leading most of the game. I will be anxious to see what kind of mental state the Hoosiers will have as they face the Buckeyes next week in Bloomington.
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