The stiff-arm delivered by Beanie on his touchdown run was classic. He just planted his right hand in the defender's face and kept running. With Pryor's performance it is easier to forget about Beanie but he quietly won that game for the Buckeyes last night. He also seems to be integral in Pryor's mental maturity. I would set your TiVo for the final six games as Wells is taking aim at opposing defenders face and the Heisman simultaneously.
Clock management, what do I know? I was reacting to the Buckeyes’ final drive last night the same way I did to the final drive against Michigan in 2005. I could not believe they were not calling timeouts and preserving time. They seemed to be taking the score for granted. Obviously, the coaches are 2-0 in that situation and were undoubtedly calmer than I was.
I generally think the coaches do a good job of putting Pryor in the best possible positions but I thought calling deep route to a running back was a tough spot. Many of you said it during the live blog, but a wide receiver would have been better at competing for a jump ball.
Pryor certainly has prodigious talents, but he still needs a lesson in throwing the ball away. He did not always lose double digit yards, but he does take unnecessary hits and risks fumbling or committing another mistake.
What is going on with the wide receivers? Two fumbles (one recovered by another wide receiver), one half-ass attempt (Robiskie – his second this season), one penalty for illegal touching because Ray Small ran out of bounds, and Ray also fumbled a punt return (but recovered it). Come on guys.
Red zone touchdown percentage stays low with a 1-for-3 effort this week. On the Buckeyes first FG-scoring drive OSU ran 9 plays from the Wisconsin 21-yard line and closer, with 5 plays run from inside the 4-yard line. On the second FG-scoring drive, the above mentioned illegal touching flag cost the Buckeyes a down and created a tough Ohio State 3rd & 8 situation. That percentage has to improve to beat Penn State and Illinois.
I still dislike the option. I know they scored using it at the end, but that is the exception to the rule. In my mind, the option is an offense, not a play. Not to go overboard, but Vince Young did not run the option nor did Michael Vick (to my shaky recollection). Maybe it will come but I do not want to see it founder around against Penn State in three weeks.
The read-option handoff from the shotgun works perfectly well (despite my initial wonderings) and the Pony formation with Beanie lined up next to Pryor with Saine behind him looks nice. I would like to see a lot more of that because of it presents options for both inside and outside runs, as well as plays to the strengths of each back. Oh yeah, the play action out of that formation has huge potential.
Big ups to AJ Trapasso. He has been steady all year but in his last three games he is averaging 48.5 yards/punt, which would place him second in the nation behind Miami (OH) punter Jacob Richardson who is averaging 51 yards/punt.
Speaking of punts, why do they put Hartline back there on returns? Did you see him get blown up on a return? He is going to get killed back there.