02
Sep
13

a solid start.

kntstadium

Jordan Hall was healthy. Dontre Wilson blew away everyone in camp. The receivers were healthy and experienced. And, we were told, Braxton Miller had successfully turned the corner, morphing from an athlete playing quarterback into an athletic quarterback.

The Urban Meyer offense was locked and loaded. And during the first quarter on Saturday, we got a glimpse of what could be in store for the rest of the fall.

Three possessions. Three touchdowns. Total time of possession just over six minutes. Two two-point conversions from one of those flaky unbalanced formations that I hate unless Ohio State is the team doing it.

And lots of silly grins and high fives in C-deck.

It was raining when I opened the garage door at 5:30 Saturday morning; that humidity hung with us even after the rain ended.

But the heat and humidity didn’t seem to bother the season’s first tailgating effort, and it certainly didn’t appear to bother our guests for the morning; my Florida cousins Jonathan and Ryan got to join us before taking in their first Ohio State game in the stadium. I hadn’t seen either one of those guys since they were kids, and it was great to hang out with both of them for the day.

knthat

The Hat is back.

We ate well — Mrs. Crappy will have her recap posted in the next day or two, and let me tell you, the breakfast creation she came up with was killer — pulled off the toast, and we all got inside without any forgotten tickets or anything.

At the end of the first quarter, the score was 23-0, and most of us in the stadium were sporting those silly grins I mentioned before.

The coaches said they throttled back on that display after the first quarter, in part out of concern for how players were faring in Saturday’s heat. And that helped highlight the one concern I had at the end of the day — the offensive line. Some of those problems were most noticeable in the second half, when Buffalo was dropping eight players into pass coverage; the blanket coverage downfield can lead to some extra pressure on Miller, who looked a bit like he didn’t want to scramble, at least until ripping off a few long runs in the fourth. But I saw too many instances where Miller was hurried by a three-man rush, and I saw too many instances when Ohio State’s O-line got pushed into the backfield; that unit should be a strength for the Buckeyes, and there were too many instances on Saturday when it didn’t play that way.

But, you say, what about the defense? How can Ohio State give up 20 to a middle-of-the-road MAC team? There are two answers to those questions:

1) Nine of the starting 11 had never started a college game before. There will be mistakes.

2) Because of that inexperience, Luke Fickell and the coaching staff played a pretty simple defense on Saturday.

Look, before you start griping about the defense, consider: Bradley Roby will be back at his corner spot against San Diego State, and that’s going to help a bunch. And the youngsters have three more games — against SDSU, at Cal and against Florida A&M — to get themselves comfortable before we start conference play.

And best of all? As far as I know, this was the most serious injury of the entire day.

kntcasualty

Mrs. Crappy’s foot was OK. But the hummus, unfortunately, is out for the season.

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2017 schedule

Aug. 31: vs. at Indiana, 8 p.m.
Sept. 9: Oklahoma, 7:30 p.m.
Sept. 16: Army, 4:30 p.m.
Sept. 23: UNLV
Sept. 30: at Rutgers
Oct. 4: at Maryland
Oct. 7: Maryland
Oct. 14: at Nebraska
Oct. 28: Penn State, 3:30 p.m.
Nov. 4: at Iowa
Nov. 11: Michigan State
Nov. 18: Illinois
Nov. 22: Indiana
Nov. 25: at Team Up North, noon
Dec. 2: B1G Championship, 8 p.m.

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