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 begins with a missed field goal and that’s about the last bad thing that happens for that team.
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 42-0win over Cincinnati on Saturday.
My Buckeye leaf this week goes to Chris Olave. From the catch he made that was almost out of bounds, to the touchdown and then the blocked punt, Olave was making plays all over the field. His efforts significantly impacted the game and he really helped out Justin Fields. He is demonstrating that he can be that go-to guy for the Buckeyes.
And I also have to give a Buckeye Leaf to Damon Arnette.
This is an easy week to pick Leaves & Peeves. Both were easily identifiable during Ohio State’s beat down of the Hoosiers.
My leaf this week goes to the man! He accounted for over 200 yards of offense and 2 touchdowns. And watching him Saturday, you could watch him getting stronger as the game went on, which Ohio State will need later in the B1G season. This week’s leaf goes to JK Dobbins!
My peeve this week goes not to a single person but a group of Buckeyes. But it wasn’t someone you saw on the field during gameplay. My peeve this week goes to the defensive coaches who continue to trot out Tuf Borland. I love Tuf, he’s a captain and seemingly a great person, but he’s not the best linebacker Ohio State has on the roster. In anything less than short yardage defenses Tuf needs to be replaced. If he’s not, this will continue to burden, and eventually burn, the Silver Bullets at some point this year.
But the best part of being 3-0? You know…Go Bucks!
My leaf for the week goes to the Ohio State offensive line led by Josh Myers. They are turning into a dominant force up front. It’s been a while since you could see that much push play after play. It really is fun to watch and not really a surprise. This is probably the most talented offensive line that has been assembled from a pure recruiting stars standpoint. These young guys just needed their chance.
Leaves to the Ohio State running game – the offensive line, JK Dobbins, and Master Teague. After all of the frustrations of last season’s inability to run effectively, how refreshing it is to see Ohio State get back to being able to run when they want to? We all know there will be games where passing the ball may not be possible or ideal if/when the weather is raining/snowing later in the season. Yes, I agree that Justin Fields’ presence is impacting the running game, with defenses respecting the zone read again, but it all starts with the offensive line establishing dominance, and that has been evident through the first few games of the 2019 season.
Peeves – Justin Fields and the passes that were sailing early in the game against Indiana. Minor peeve, but I hope that gets cleaned up because I can see an opposing defensive back intercepting an errant pass as the future opponents get better down the road.
I’m going to give a standing Buckeye leaf to Chase Young because he might just be the best player in college football, and more importantly, he actually plays like it every single Saturday. His effort is relentless, his technique is impressive, and his production is unwavering. He is every single thing Buckeye fans and coaches were hoping for when he was signed as a 5-star recruit.
I’m also going to hand out a collective leaf to the Ohio State offensive line. They’re not just springing JK Dobbins at the line of scrimmage, they were getting into the second level and blocking defenders eight yards downfield so that Dobbins could stay untouched even longer. The left side of this offensive line is devastating right now.
If I’m going to hand out a peef, it would go to the Waze App that had us take 70 East home even though we saw how bad it was on the way to Indiana. That was the first and last time I travel with Waze. Google Maps, will you take me back?
The Buckeyes rushed for 7.7 yards per carry at Indiana. That represented 299 yards for J.K. Dobbins and Master Teague. And while those running backs were both great, I’m giving my Leaf to the offensive line.
They generated a strong and consistent push up front, clearing big lanes. Justin Fields was only sacked once, and consistently had time to throw.
Last year, the line was a big reason why the Buckeyes struggled to generate a consistent running game. This year, they’ve been a key to making Ohio State’s run game look like an Ohio State run game again.