It’s Time to Pick a Fight
Despite OSU’s defense giving up 48 points to Iowa last week, so much of the talk coming into Saturday’s game against Michigan State centers on Ohio State’s offense.
The Spartans will bring the Big Ten’s best run defense into Ohio Stadium. Generally, in order to run against a defense like this, an offense will need to utilize the pass to loosen things up. According to OSU offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson, however, it’s just not that easy.
“You don’t loosen these guys up,” he said. “They just kind of keep playing their quarters man. They have some adjustments when they zone pressure and do their zone fires and their fire zone games they’ll go to some man-free.
“Years ago coach (Terry) Hoeppner would always call it ‘cat coverage.’ ‘I got this cat, I got that cat, and you’ve got to stop the run.’ You’ve got to make some one-on-one plays to throw the ball on these guys. You can do all of the play-action you want, but it still comes down to one-on-one. They are so well-taught in their scheme. They keep their eyes where they’re supposed to. You can try to open up the running game, but it’s going to be a fistfight to run the ball.”
More on J.K. Dobbins Getting the Ball
The topic of J.K. Dobbins getting the football has been pounded into the ground more than Dobbins has been pounded into an opposing defensive front over the last month.
On Wednesday, Kevin Wilson said that he wasn’t trying to take the ball out of Dobbins’ hands against Iowa, but over the course of a game, many factors can cause players to get short-changed. Ultimately, however, it still comes down to the guy calling the plays.
“He’s a special player, he’s a special kid. We’re not trying to take the air out of his ball,” Wilson said. “That being said too, the guy’s going to distribute the ball on certain plays, and I’m going to call certain plays, and Coach Meyer’s going to call certain plays when we get going in the game plan. We’re trying to score as much as fast [as we can], but we did not Saturday. That falls on me. I’ve got to own that and take responsibility for that.”
Deja Vu Coming for OSU’s Defense?
There were many problems with last week’s defense, and with some similarities between the Iowa and Michigan State offense offenses, some of those problems need to be fixed immediately.
Urban Meyer is well aware of those similarities, and the problems that it could cause.
“They do run some pro-style run game like we saw last week, so we went into that correction mode immediately on Sunday, and that’s going to be worked on all week in practice,” he said.
One of the major differences between the two offenses, however, is Michigan State quarterback Brian Lewerke’s mobility. He is as dangerous a runner as he is a passer, and he’s thrown for over 800 yards the past two weeks.
“Today was my day to watch a lot of him,” Meyer said on Wednesday. “I see a guy that’s deceptively fast and he creates a lot of plays on his own. He’s a very accurate thrower.”
An Update on Trevon Grimes
One Buckeye who was expected to contribute this season is freshman receiver Trevon Grimes. Unfortunately, a personal issue took Grimes back home to Florida a while ago, which is where he will be for at least the rest of the semester.
“He’s still there. He’s finishing his classes online. It was a personal situation,” Meyer explained.
And is the plan for him to eventually return to the Ohio State roster?
“I think so,” he said.