We all remember how wide open of an offense Ohio State ran in 2006 at the reins of Troy Smith. His stellar career will always be clouded by the national championship beat down the buckeyes received from the Florida Gators, however I feel like we can see Terrelle Pryor slowly growing to be more like Troy Smith everyday.
Some might call this a stretch and I can totally understand why, but if you have seen his recent games and noticed a more calm and composed Pryor I am sure you will have no problem seeing where I am coming from.
Troy Smith's senior year was full of big plays, composed of long passes to Ted Ginn jr. and sure bet passes to one of the best route runners we have seen in Anthony Gonzalez. Because of these weapons you would see Jim Tressel call plays that we would never imagine the senator calling now. However, he trusted Troy Smith with the offense allowing us to beat teams to a pulp like Pete Carroll and Urban Meyer do on a game to game basis.
He still has some difficulty with his form when throwing the ball, but as we saw with Tim Tebow, it is possible for a college quarterback to still be successful. He also needs to become more comfortable in the pocket. But, Terrelle Pryor is beginning to see the light in my opinion. He appeared to be very composed and ready for the rose bowl, much like Troy Smith, and he seemed to be making the right decisions with the ball. This is something we have been waiting to see the young quarterback do. An immediate result of this was a more aggressive play calling scheme from coach Tressel and the dominant performance the buckeyes needed to show they still mean business on the national stage.
Jim Tressel proved to fans in 2006 that he was not afraid to push the ball down the field in a very aggressive manner, however we have not seen this kind of aerial attack in recent years. I feel like this was because he trusted Troy Smith's ability to make the right decision. He has had trouble gaining that comfort level with Pryor, which is clearly evident in the play calling. This was do to the fact he had some trouble making the right decision. However, In the Rose Bowl Pryor appeared very composed and made very few mistakes. The result of this was a very aggressive approach to the game, and a win that few of us believed attainable(if we won I would have bet that it was a complete defensive battle). This tells me that Tressel appears to have gained trust in Pryor, and I feel this could lead to a very explosive offense.
With a star receiver in DeVier Posey, and Tressel's growing trust in the now maturing quarterback, I see it very likely that the 2010 season will be similar to our 2006 one. Full of powerful offense and a very strong defense, we should be a national contender on every ones hot list.