COLUMBUS, Ohio — This week I had the unenviable task of taking the family dog to the vet where he had 28, that’s right, 28 teeth pulled.
When I picked up the dog I was sure that he would be the most pathetic thing I would see in a long, long time. He had just seven teeth left, he was wobbly from the anesthesia, and he had a mouth full of stitches that was incredibly sore. Surely nothing could be more pathetic than this.
Then two days later I watched what Ohio State did to Maryland.
The dog got much more humane treatment than the Terrapins.
The Ohio State offense absolutely abused the Maryland defense to put 59 points up in essentially three quarters of play. When head coach Ryan Day called off the dogs and played his reserves in the fourth quarter the OSU second-team defense bent and gave up a score to Maryland, but also scored a touchdown on a pick six by Craig Young.
Maryland came into the game with the intent of taking away the OSU running attack led by freshman running back TreVeyon Henderson. To some extent they were successful at that. Henderson found the going tough early in the game, but when you take something away from an offense you always weaken yourself another aspect of the offense. Somehow the Terripins had figured that taking their chances against the OSU passing game with quarterback C.J. Stroud and receivers Chris Olave, Jaxon Smith-Njigba and Garrett Wilson would be better than letting Henderson get lose.
What were they thinking?
Stroud and his receivers absolutely carved up the Maryland defesnse. They scored five touchdowns in the first half on their first five possessions. Their sixth possession ended when Stroud took a knee to end the half. The Terrrapins were saved by the bell, because nothing they could do defensively could save them from the onslaught.
The OSU first team offense played three series in the second half. The result was three touchdowns to make the score 56-10. At that point Day removed his first team on both sides of the ball. The Terps managed a touchdown against the OSU second team defense, but OSU’ s offense responded with a field goal, then Craig Young made a pick-six to make the final 66-17. It was the fourth-straight game in which the Buckeyes have scored a defensive touchdown.
The OSU offense amassed 597 yards of offense in essentially three quarters. Ohio State put up 432 yards in passing and another 166 rushing. Stroud was 24 of 33 passing for 406 yards and five touchdowns. He completed 73% of his passes.
Olave was OSU’s leading receiver with seven catches for 120 yards and two touchdowns. He averaged over 17 yards per catch. Smith-Njigba had five receptions for 103 yards and Wilson had had five for 84 yards and two touchdowns. TreVeyon Henderson was also active in the passing game as a receiver. He had four catches for 67 yards and a touchdown.
Despite Maryland’s best effort to take away Henderson’s rushing game he still managed 102 yards on 16 attempts. He also scored two rushing touchdowns to go with his receiving touchdown. Master Teague also managed a rushing touchdown of his own.
The OSU defense, which has been the weak link on this team, continued to show improvement. They allowed Maryland just 56 yards rushing and produced two turnovers on interceptions. Maybe even more importantly, at times they were able to be disruptive with their pass rush, something that was woefully missing early on in the season.
In case you are wondering, two days after having his teeth removed the dog is fine. He is eating, drinking, and even playing a little.
I’m not sure Maryland will get over this nightmare as quickly as he did.