Ohio State vs. Rutgers: Grades and Analysis for Buckeyes

Spencer Holbrook@spencerholbrookFeatured ColumnistOctober 1, 2016

Ohio State vs. Rutgers: Grades and Analysis for Buckeyes

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    Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

    Ohio State came off its bye week with a bang, embarrassing Rutgers 58-0 on Saturday in the annual homecoming game.

    The Buckeyes gave up 61 yards on the opening drive but surrendered just 55 yards of total offense throughout the rest of the game. Ohio State had 669 yards of total offense.

    It was an easy win for the Buckeyes, but how did they actually look? Check out their grades in the following slides. 

Rushing Offense: A+

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    Jay LaPrete/Associated Press

    The offensive line dominated Rutgers’ front seven and gave Mike Weber huge holes to run through. Many have been wondering when Weber would finally break a long run, and it happened early in the third quarter on a 46-yard touchdown run to make it 37-0.

    Weber finished the day with 14 carries for 144 yards and a touchdown. He averaged over 10 yards per carry. Curtis Samuel also had nine carries for 68 yards, while Demario McCall, Parris Campbell and Johnnie Dixon each had a rushing touchdown. The Buckeyes had 410 yards on the ground for the day.



Passing Offense: A-

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    Jay LaPrete/Associated Press

    J.T. Barrett started slow, which explains the A-minus. He looked sloppy early and even threw an interception in the first quarter, but he was back in form quickly.

    Barrett finished the day 21-of-29 passing for 238 yards and four touchdowns. The third touchdown broke the all-time record for most passing touchdowns for an Ohio State quarterback. All four touchdowns came in the first half. The Buckeyes had at least one pass catch from 12 different receivers, which shows the depth at the skill positions.

    The offensive line kept Barrett upright most of the afternoon and did not give up a sack.

Rushing Defense: A+

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    Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

    It’s safe to say that Ohio State has one of the best front sevens in all of college football. The Buckeyes gave up just 83 yards on the ground. Linebackers did an excellent job filling holes and giving the Big Ten’s leading rusher, Robert Martin, nowhere to run. He picked up just 40 yards on 13 carries.

    Robert Landers and Michael Hill were dominant at moving the line of scrimmage and constantly getting into the backfield.

     

Passing Defense: A+

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    Marshon Lattimore broke this would-be catch up.
    Marshon Lattimore broke this would-be catch up.Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

    Rutgers starting quarterback Chris Laviano completed three passes.

    Three.

    Two of those came on Rutgers' opening drive and all three came in the first quarter. Only one Scarlet Knight, Jawuan Harris, caught a pass. Coverage was fantastic by the back end and gave Laviano nowhere to go with the ball. The secondary came up with a few pass breakups, but no interceptions for the first time this season.

    It also doesn’t help Rutgers’ passing attack when Robert Landers, Tyquan Lewis, Nick Bosa and others were in Laviano’s face all day, pressuring him and coming up with three sacks.

Special Teams: B

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    Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

    This grade may be a little harsh, considering he made a field goal and was 5-of-6 on extra points, but the missed PAT from Tyler Durbin earns the B-minus. While it may have been a fluke and it didn’t matter in the thrashing of Rutgers, later in the Big Ten season missed extra points may be the deciding factor in big games. Things like that cannot happen.

    Rutgers had less-than-ideal starting field position all afternoon due to the speed of the kickoff coverage. The Scarlet Knights started around their own 20-yard line most of the day.

     

Conclusion

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    Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

    Ohio State opened Big Ten play the way it ended non-conference play: in dominating fashion. The Buckeyes got the Big Ten schedule off on the right foot and will play Indiana next Saturday.

    How did you think the Buckeyes looked against Rutgers? Tell me in the comment section below!