Buckeye Leaves and Peeves from Ohio State’s 45-21 Win Over Florida Atlantic

Chase Young Ohio State Buckeyes Defensive End

There is good and bad in every game.

Some games have more good than bad, and some games have more bad than good.

And some games have no bad for the first nine minutes, and then sometimes more bad than good over the next 51 minutes.

This feature is about acknowledging both the bad and good, or whichever stood out to us most.

Borrowing from Ohio State’s practice of handing out Buckeye leaves for good plays, we will do the same. But unlike OSU, we are also going to include some peeves.

If a peeve was a sticker, it would have a picture on it of a wolverine with a smirk. And there’s no way you want too many of those on your helmet.

So we — staff, contributors, and hangers-on — are handing out some leaves and peeves following Ohio State’s 45-21 win over Florida Atlantic on Saturday.

Caroline Rice

My Buckeye Leaf goes to graduate senior defensive tackle Jashon Cornell. Cornell played defensive end in the game and recorded a career high two tackles-for-loss and a sack. Cornell was a strong point on the defense and helped hold FAU to negative 14 yards of total offense in the first half of the game. Without Jonathon Cooper playing in the game, the defensive line needed another leader alongside Chase Young and I think Cornell stepped up and did that. Cornell’s performance was critical.

Tom Orr

Chase Young. On a day when the Buckeyes were very short-handed on the defensive line, their biggest star stepped up big. Young looked virtually unblockable at times, finishing with five tackles and 1.5 sacks.

When he and the rest of the first-team defense were on the field, the unit looked absolutely nothing like the 2018 version.

The competition is about to get tougher, but if they can continue to lock down opponents like that, it raises the ceiling for this year’s team about as high as possible.

Michael Meihls

What do you mean there was more than one quarter of football played on Saturday in The Shoe? My Buckeye Leaf this week goes to Brendon White. For a man who was almost cast aside last year at this time to become a huge contributor late in 2018, and to take on a new hybrid role this year, and to do it so well, he was the player who flashed the most for me. Great win, lots to work on, but BWhite gets my leaf.

A win is a win, and the entire team gets a leaf for that. However, my Buckeye Peeve, Peaf, or is it B-eeve? Goes to the coaching staff, particularly on the offensive side of the ball. I understand wanting to get game reps for the starters, but Fields was in too late Saturday. They also need to get game reps for the backups in the QB room. Next week probably won’t allow much PT for them either, so I expect Miami to see a lot of QB2 & QB3. Otherwise, celebrating the first win is great, let’s get ready for the Fickells!

Brandon Zimmerman

My Buckeye leaf goes to Baron Browning. While he only finished with 4 tackles, 1 tackle-for-loss, and 1 QB hurry, he played with an aggression that we have not seen from him. There were quite a few “wow” moments early by the Buckeyes, but his lone TFL was one of my favorites. The angle he took, the speed he utilized, and the powerful tackle was a sight we have not seen since Raekwon McMillan was patrolling those parts.

Jared Ilovar

I give my Buckeye Leaf to Ryan Day for keeping the Ohio State train rolling… for making needed and intelligent coaching changes on the defense… for not running Fields with the game decided even though it upset so many people on Twitter that Ohio State didn’t score 70 points.

Chip Minnich

Buckeye Leaf for Baron Browning. For possibly the first time since arriving in Columbus, Browning seemed like he was just playing, and not overthinking it. Perhaps that is a comment on the previous coaching staff/scheme, but I am optimistic about Browning’s role in this defense after that performance against Florida Atlantic.

Tony Gerdeman

I am handing out a Buckeye peeve to the Ohio State running game. The Buckeyes rushed for 105 yards on 10 attempts in the first quarter, with nearly half of that coming via Justin Fields’ 51-yarder. But that’s fine. The other nine attempts averaged six yards per carry. You can win with that.

The second quarter, however, was bad. Ohio State ran for 3 yards on 12 attempts. That is unacceptable against any opponent on their schedule this season, let alone one that gave up 28 points in the first nine minutes of the game. They only did marginally better in the third quarter, rushing for 39 yards on 10 carries.

If you take away Fields’ 51-yard run, OSU went for 96 yards on 31 attempts — barely 3 yards per carry. This was as bad as any game last year, but having Fields can equalize some things. Regardless, the offensive line needs to get momentum building and JK Dobbins needs to continue running hard.

Also, let’s throw a Buckeye leaf in the direction of Jashon Cornell. He had two tackles for loss and a sack at defensive end after moving over from defensive tackle in camp.

13 Responses

  1. My peeve goes to the coaching staff for allowing a culture of 15 – 30 minute preparation for playing time culture.

  2. Leaf – Larry Johnson. Dude had his troops ready to play and ready to play any position. How many coaches can get a DT to play DE like it’s a switch you flip?
    Peeve – 2nd team D letting up the last TD and spoiling my game prediction of 45 – 14!

  3. Malik Harrison gets mine as well. That guy is so dang big and physical. He looked like a DE – he’d be great in a true 3-4 scheme. I also thought Jordan Fuller played very well as the single high safety. Finally, the team speed of the Buckeyes on defense was very evident. That D-line was very aggressive and all were fast. I have a peeve for the coaching staff shutting it down with the Vanilla O and D, also not having a smooth transition with the 2’s. Giving up that last TD was also a bad beat – that’s another story.

  4. Malik Harrison, anyone? Guy played solid. Fast to the ball, hard hitting. Some great disruption. Leaf worthy for sure.

    And while I’m questioning about D, Okudah. Really no leaf from anyone?

    And on O, Olave, Fields, Teague in garbage time… Coaches overall use of the TEs.

    Not a pretty game for most it. In fact pretty frustrating to watch. But some good individual efforts and nice coaching here and there. Loved the punt return game for at least half of it.

    1. Buckeyeabroad — This is mostly my fault since I only asked for one leaf or peeve from everyone, but both Harrison and Okudah were outstanding, as were mentioned in The Buckeye Watch and/or the 10 Things piece just posted.

  5. I dont think there is another school that had had more potentially special seasons derailed by inadequate coaching…Studwara and Alford have to be addressed. Unfortunately it wont be in time for this season.

    1. How do you get to a potentially special season without coaches?

      1. Can you read? What kind of response question is that? I sure hope you dont have a degree from OSU…as that level of intellect would lessen the value of all our degrees.

        1. You’re just mad that he made an excellent point. How do you even get in the position to have a potentially special season without great coaching? Maybe try answering that legit question without resorting to insults.

    2. Christopher, it already appears that in 2019 the observations from the last 2 years regarding Coach Studrawa are 100% accurate

      It only takes a critical position coach to screw up what is otherwise a great coaching staff.

      I think your post was pretty clear, but, for the coconut crowd. A potentially great coaching staff can, and almost always is ruined by a position coach here, or a position coach there not delivering.

      Go out and buy a brand new car. Test drive it to ensure it runs great. Then after a week you have to have it towed into the shop because you can’t even get the thing to start. Is the whole car shot to hell? Not likely. The mechanic comes along and tells you that the transmission modulator is broken. Should you replace the whole car, or should you spend 100 bucks and replace the modulator. A great car turned into a POS all because 1 of the parts of the whole is busted. Same damned thing with a coaching staff. WR coach…..CHECK…..RB Coach…..CHECK….QB Coach…..CHECK….OLine coach…..misfiring…….Without all the pieces the staff is great, but, without a great OLine coach that damned offense “ain’t” going anywhere.

      Billy Davis for the past 2 years was a fouled piston preventing a potentially great defense, with some of the shiniest parts manufactured. Doesn’t matter because the coach sucked. Throw out the bad parts and replace them. In case of the defense last year, the head mechanic had no clue how to get other mechanics to assemble the shiny parts and the freaking parts fell off all over the highway.

      Just because a coaching staff is great, it doesn’t mean that ALL of that staff is great. A simple concept some find difficult, if not impossible to grasp.

  6. The running game’s lack of production after the first quarter was poor reads and poor play calling – I counted four straight carries for Dobbins that tried to go wide when you could see the defense racing up to cover the running game (more defenders than blockers, the kid did not have a chance). How about establishing a strong push up the middle with play action passes and once they crowd that option try the wide side. The reads of the QB were horrible, other than the first run he kept the ball and got smashed – he needs to study JT Barret a little.

    1. I agree Rod, I think a lot of those handoffs were read option and Justin didn’t make the right read. He seemed to hand off often when he needed to keep. But I’m sure that’s probably a result of Day and Yurcich preaching to him that he needs to use his RBs and not run too often.

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