Last weekend was an exciting one for Ohio State football, to be sure. The buzz around Urban Meyer was only overshadowed by The Game, held this year, of course Up North. And although the 2900-day domination over Michigan came to an end this year in The Big House, the future looks good—if not a little bit murky—for the Ohio State football Buckeyes.
Truth be told, early in the year, I was actually a Joe Bauserman backer. His first game reminded me more than a little bit of Joe Germaine. He was on target, strong armed, and solid in the pocket. Unfortunately after that, he reminded me more of Germaine’s pro career--confused and short-lived. Braxton Miller just wasn’t doing it for me. There’s nothing I hate more than designed quarterback runs, except maybe quarterback runs where the QB pulls it down way too early and takes off on pass plays. Which is what I saw too much of from Miller early in the year. As the season progressed, however, he grew on me--dramatically. Stayed in the pocket a little longer, made mistakes that definitely cost Ohio State some points, but showed more and more poise week after week. Working on deep throws should be a major priority for Miller and the Buckeyes this offseason. If Miller could have hit his deep receivers with any consistency, Ohio State wouldn’t have had one of the worst passing offenses in college football this year. Probably three touchdowns were missed against Michigan alone. Uggh.
|When Miller's arm is as good as his legs--watch out. (AP)|
I’m not one to suggest a coach is the deciding factor for success. But I’m more than willing (and much more than our own SamVox) to give Meyer some room to work. The spread offense that Meyer should bring in should allow Braxton Miller to flourish. Plus, nothing is more important to a college team’s success than recruiting, and I can’t think the Meyer era in Columbus will accompany anything less than premiere in- and out-of-state recruiting, year after year. Nevertheless, that’s next year; while this week Buckeyes fans will be forced to watch Wisconsin versus Michigan State, of all teams, in the inaugural Big Ten Championship game. Uggh.
And of course, there’s another team about 135 miles north on I-71 which occupies half my weekends as well. And the Browns are in perpetual rebuilding mode. With the jettison of Ryan Pontbriand this week, the last Butch Davis holdover is gone—which tells you a lot about the continuity of talent in orange and brown. That it’s nonexistent.