Michigan-Ohio State Football: 12 Surefire Ways To Beat the Buckeyes

Joel GreerCorrespondent INovember 21, 2010

Terrelle Pryor must be contained
Terrelle Pryor must be containedGregory Shamus/Getty Images

(In what many call the greatest rivalry in collegiate sports, Michigan and Ohio State meet Saturday for the 107th  time. The Wolverines (7-4, 3-4) hold a commanding 57-43-6 edge in The Game, while the Buckeyes (10-1, 6-1) have won the last six straight).

1. Under no circumstance do you try a field goal. Unless the ball’s on OSU’s five with 10 seconds left, then drag a kicker down from section 31.  

2. Never punt outside of Michigan’s 30-yard line.  With our nationally ranked offense, we should get a first down almost every time. If it’s 4th and 40, let’s rethink this.

3. Score in the first half. In four Big Ten losses, our offense has put up 10 against the Spartans, seven against Iowa, seven against Penn State, and, well, none against Wisconsin.

The offense needs to play with more purpose early The opening pass in the Illinois game was like the perfect storm. Both of Illinois’ safeties bit on Robinson’s fake, but it was still a good call. The defense?  It was slightly late arriving to the Wisconsin game. Word has it they were caught in traffic along I-94 (near Saline Road).

Pressure Pryor

4. Get Pryor’s uniform dirty. We’re not advocating breaking rules, we’d just like to see him hit when he throws. We’d also like to see him surrounded when he tries to scramble. Then we’d like to see two players crunch him simultaneously, and maybe he would go down.

5. One thing to remember, The Ohio State training staff has plenty of smelling salts. It would be novel if they used them on Ohio State players, not Michigan fans.

6. Michigan needs to play either Forcier or Gardner a little more just to occasionally stretch the field. Devin Gardner?

Carr's Squad Disrespected

7. The game is in Columbus and it’s a dangerous place for Michigan fans (especially with license plates), but it’s time we honored the Ohio State athletic department for delaying Michigan’s entrance into the stadium a few year’s back. You see, their security detail used dogs to search Michigan’s equipment in fear of the worst. The Toledo Blade got the story. 


Maybe Michigan’s ill-behaved hockey fans could harass Tressel during the Buckeyes’ final walk through. Of course, the language probably wouldn’t bother Ohio’s living legend, since he has thousands of foul mouths right behind his bench. How about painting the Horseshoe maize? They paint our rock, don’t they?

8. Because we’re playing a 3-3-5, we could show a variety of blitzes.  Blitz at least one player on every play.  Sometimes two.  Sometimes three.  Borrow the Ohio Bobcat and blitz him, too.

More man coverage

9. Play more “man to man” coverage. In some zone schemes, there are three Michigan players near the receiver. Just not near enough. Playing “man” would free up defensive backs for run support. Would we get burned more? Sure. Would it matter? Of course not.

10. Use the jumbo formation. The big fullback. Two tight ends. The balanced line. Run the old triple option. Just once, or if it works, twice.

11. Never run out the clock at halftime. Michigan’s done it more than once this season. It doesn’t make sense. With this offense, we can score from anywhere on the field. And score quickly.

12. Never kick the ball deep. Use the onside kick exclusively. Ohio State starting from its 30 means seven points in seven minutes. If we attempt the onside kick and Ohio recovers, they score from our 40 in four minutes. We either need the ball or the three extra minutes. 

Michigan 49, Ohio State 48


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