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The Countdown

A bottom-to-top assessment of the F.B.S. landscape heading into the 2012 season.

The Countdown

No. 17: Ohio State

So, to recap. In December, five players are suspended for the first five games of 2011 for selling jerseys, pants, rings — just receiving improper benefits, in short. Ohio State goes on to win the Sugar Bowl with these five in place, which some people take umbrage with. In March, it is first reported that then-coach Jim Tressel knew of these N.C.A.A. violations nearly a year before but didn’t report them to the N.C.A.A. or his own university. Tressel is suspended for the first two games of 2011 — later raised to five games — and fined $250,000. In April, the N.C.A.A. releases its Notice of Allegations; Tressel doesn’t come off well. Tressel resigns on May 30, leading O.S.U. to name Luke Fickell the interim coach for the 2011 season. In June, would-be senior quarterback Terrelle Pryor decides to forego his final season of eligibility. That same month, O.S.U. vacates its 2010 results and goes on two year of self-imposed probation. Did I miss anything?

Conference
Big Ten, Leaders

Location
Columbus, Ohio

Nickname
Buckeyes

Returning starters
11 (7 offense, 4 defense)

Last year’s ranking
No. 3

2010 record
(12-1, 7-1)

Last year’s
re-ranking

No. 5

2011 schedule

  • Sept. 3
    Akron
  • Sept. 10
    Toledo
  • Sept. 17
    at Miami (Fla.)
  • Sept. 24
    Colorado
  • Oct. 1
    Michigan St.
  • Oct. 8
    at Nebraska
  • Oct. 15
    at Illinois
  • Oct. 29
    Wisconsin
  • Nov. 5
    Indiana
  • Nov. 12
    at Purdue
  • Nov. 19
    Penn St.
  • Nov. 26
    at Michigan

Last year’s prediction

There’s simply nothing I can find umbrage with on this roster: a weakness for significant portions of 2009, Ohio State looks to have one of the nation’s most dangerous quarterbacks under center; the running game will again be among the top 20 in the country; the offensive line improved; the defense stingy and opportunistic. It seems as if I’m covering my tracks in case Boise State, say, loses to Virginia Tech on Sept. 6. Maybe. All I can say is this: if a team like Ohio State does not play for a national title, it speaks volumes about just how many great teams there are in college football in 2010.

2010 recap

In a nutshell All went swimmingly through the second Saturday of October: 6-0, 2-0 in conference play, Ohio State had been moderately tested by Illinois but clearly stood as one of the top teams in the country. A loss to Wisconsin changed that, at least to a degree. The Badgers were the more physical team — as well as the more explosive, perhaps — which was a turn of events few could have expected, night crowd in Madison or no. The Buckeyes regrouped from there, winning five straight to end the regular season and beating Arkansas in the Sugar Bowl. But the defining moment of 2010 came after the season was over, as noted above. And so we face an existential dilemma: Ohio State went 12-1 but must vacate the results, so it’s up to the players, coaches and fans to decide how to really remember last season. Will memories of 2010 be tinged by the fact that the program lists its final record as 0-1?

High point The last two weeks of the regular season. The Buckeyes concluded November with a 20-17 road win at Iowa, complete with a familiar scoring drive to earn the win, and a 30-point win at home over rival Michigan. Ohio State must have been very upset to hear that Rich Rodriguez would not return in 2011.

Low point A 31-18 loss to Wisconsin on Oct. 16. The Badgers stormed out to a 21-0 halftime lead and never looked back. While O.S.U. got within a field goal in the third quarter, Wisconsin scored the game’s final 10 points for the 13-point victory.

Tidbit Ohio State ended last season ranked fourth nationally in total defense (261.9 yards per game), fourth in pass efficiency defense (98.6 opposing rating), third in rush defense (96.4 yards per game), fifth in scoring (14.3 points per game), tied for 12th in forced turnovers (30), third in first downs allowed (14.5 per game), fifth in third down defense (30.2 percent) and tied for seventh in red zone defense (70.0 percent). Catch all that? Perhaps the most impressive statistic is this: Ohio State held opponents scoreless in 25 quarters of a possible 52 quarters last fall, or 48.1 percent of all quarters played. In all, the Buckeyes have allowed less than 186 points in each of the last six years.

Tidbit (Pryor edition) Terrelle Pryor would have set several extremely impressive school records even if playing in only eight games as a senior, barring injury and ignoring the fact that the program vacated the 2010 results. Why ignore that fact? Because the tidbit does illustrate just how productive he was, contrary to public opinion, and does show what O.S.U. is going to miss under center. Pryor ends his career ranked fifth in school history in passing yards, with 6,177 yards to Art Schlichter’s 7,547. He’s tied for first with Bobby Hoying for career touchdown passes with 57. He’s second in total yardage with 8,341 yards, again behind Schlichter, who had 8,850. Schlichter is also first in touchdowns responsible for with 85, ahead of second-place Pryor with 78. Pryor was already Ohio State’s most prolific rushing quarterback, having passed Cornelius Green late in 2010. He’ll be sorely missed on the field.

Former players in the N.F.L.

49 S Will Allen (Pittsburgh), TE Jake Ballard (New York Giants), OT Alex Boone (San Francisco), OG Justin Boren (Baltimore), OG Bryant Browning (Carolina), LB Bobby Carpenter (Detroit), CB Chimdi Chekwa (Oakland), CB Nate Clements (Cincinnati), S Kurt Coleman (Philadelphia), C Jim Cordle (New York Giants), LB Na’il Diggs (St. Louis), CB Chris Gamble (Carolina), DE Vernon Gholston (Chicago), LB Thaddeus Gibson (San Francisco), WR Ted Ginn (San Francisco), WR Anthony Gonzalez (Indianapolis), LB Larry Grant (San Francisco), WR Brian Hartline (Miami), TE Ben Hartsock (Carolina), LB A.J. Hawk (Green Bay), DE Cameron Heyward (Pittsburgh), S Jermale Hines (St. Louis), WR Santonio Holmes (New York Jets), LB Ross Homan (Minnesota), S Malcolm Jenkins (New Orleans), WR Michael Jenkins (Minnesota), DE Dexter Larimore (New Orleans), LB James Laurinaitis (St. Louis), C Nick Mangold (New York Jets), LS Jake McQuaide (St. Louis), K Mike Nugent (Cincinnati), OG Jim Narby (Cleveland), DE Ryan Pickett (Green Bay), WR Brian Robiskie (Cleveland), LB Brian Rolle (Philadelphia), DE Robert Rose (Miami), S Anderson Russell (Washington), RB Brandon Saine (Green Bay), WR Dane Sanzenbacher (Chicago), DE Darrion Scott (Washington), OG Rob Sims (Detrot), DE Will Smith (New Orleans), LB Austin Spitler (Miami), CB Devon Torrence (Minnesota), CB Donald Washington (Kansas City), RB Beanie Wells (Arizona), S Donte Whitner (San Francisco), CB Antoine Winfield (Minnesota), DT Doug Worthington (Washington).

Arbitrary top five list

Golfers
1. Jack Nicklaus.
2. Tiger Woods.
3. Bobby Jones.
4. Ben Hogan.
5. Arnold Palmer.

Coaching

Luke Fickell (Ohio State ’97), entering his first season. And probably his last as the head coach, if I had to guess, barring another Big Ten title. The general consensus is that Ohio State will open up its head coaching position to a national search at the end of this season, making Fickell a one-and-done interim coach. Even if that does occur — and it’s far to early to make any real assumptions — 2011 present the former O.S.U. co-defensive coordinator with a wonderful opportunity. Even if the Buckeyes disappoint by the program’s recent standard, perhaps going 8-4, Fickell will become a very popular candidate for a job opening at a MAC stop, for instance, with the thought being that if he can pilot the Buckeyes through this difficult stretch he has what it takes to lead a lesser program. Then again, Fickell could surprise us all, leading O.S.U. back to the Rose Bowl despite what seems like a stacked deck. He’s spent the last six years as Ohio State’s co-coordinator and linebackers coach, sharing the former duties with Jim Heacock. That he wasn’t the sole coordinator is a good thing this fall, as Fickell can give Heacock the lion’s share of the defensive assignments and devote himself fully to being a C.E.O. — like his predecessor. Outside of a two-year stint as Akron’s defensive line coach from 2000-1, all of Fickell’s college experience has come with the Buckeyes. As a player, Fickell started 50 straight games at nose guard — you wouldn’t guess it by looking at him now — for Ohio State from 1993-96. He was an O.S.U. graduate assistant for one year, in 1999, before moving to Akron; he returned in 2002 as Ohio State’s special teams coordinator, a position he held for two seasons. Then linebackers, then co-coordinator, now head coach. A great opportunity, above all else.

Players to watch

Pryor won’t be back at all, but left tackle Mike Adams, wide receiver DeVier Posey and running back Dan Herron will be back for Ohio State’s trip to Nebraska on Oct. 8. Perhaps you’ve heard of these developments. So each offensive grouping has holes to fill, some for longer than others; it’s therefore a good thing that Ohio State stockpiles top recruits like Cold War rivals stockpiled warheads. Finding the next Herron – until the real Herron returns to the field – won’t be all too difficult, though you won’t find the senior’s experience elsewhere on the roster. You will find some nice talent, speed, athleticism and versatility, however.

Jaamal Berry (266 yards, 8.1 yards per carry) should see Herron’s five-game suspension as an outstanding opportunity. Berry would have probably spent this season again serving as a change-of-pace option, filling in for Herron on occasion but leaving the senior to do the heavy lifting. Again, this is a great chance for Berry to shine. The same could be said of another sophomore, Carlos Hyde, who rushed for 115 yards last fall. Then there’s junior Jordan Hall, who can do it all: either a running back or a receiver, perhaps both, Hall’s blend of versatility adds another dimension to this backfield. What about redshirt freshman Rod Smith? His size and running style separates him from the rest of the pack, which could lead to Smith playing a huge role as a rookie.

No Posey early, but no Dane Sanzenbacher at all; the latter loss looms far larger. Who will be Ohio State’s new consistent, move-the-chains, deceptively-quick receiver in 2011? That’s a great question. When looking ahead to Akron – sans Posey – you find only two receivers who have made a reception for the Buckeyes: sophomores Corey Brown and Chris Fields. You know what that means, right? It’s time for freshmen, redshirt and true, to step up to the plate. One, redshirt freshman Verlon Reed, a converted high school quarterback, is poised to join Brown in the starting lineup come the season opener. Another freshman coming off a redshirt season, T.Y. Williams, has battled inconsistency on the practice field but has the size, at 6’6, to be a difference-maker. In a perfect world, incoming freshmen Evan Spencer and Devin Smith wouldn’t play for a year or two, give or take; they’ll both play in 2011. New wide receivers coach Stan Drayton will have his hands full. While the receiver corps develops — and even after a few contributors step forward — look for Ohio State to continue utilizing tight ends Jake Stoneburner (21 catches for 222 yards) and Reid Fragel in the passing game.

And the offensive line: Adams will be missed while paying his penance, but O.S.U. knows what it will get in sophomore Andrew Norwell, his short-term replacement. Norwell did enough last fall as Ohio State’s first lineman off the bench to make him the long-term answer at tackle, but he’ll probably move back to a reserve role come October. In the meantime, he’ll bookend the line with junior right tackle J.B. Shugarts. The latter and center Michael Brewster are the lone two returning starters to be found on the depth chart heading into Akron; Brewster, now also a junior, is one of the best centers in the nation. He’ll be flanked at guard by Marcus Hall, who has bided his time in preparation for this opportunity, and Jack Mewhort. That’s the idea as of today.

Only four starters return on defense, though the Buckeyes get back a pair with past starting experience coming an injury-plagued 2010 campaign. What this defense lacks, from top to bottom and at all points in between, is star power – you know, early all-Americans, national award candidates, stars. Is that such a big deal? Nope, not since the Buckeyes always have a defender or two make waves after coming in under the radar. But it does warrant mentioning that for the first time in several years, Ohio State doesn’t have that headliner on defense.

But there are some nice pieces. The Buckeyes return a pair of starting linemen in Nathan Williams (46 tackles, 4.5 sacks) and John Simon (41 tackles, 8.5 for loss), with the latter joining Williams at end after spending last season inside. Simon will continue to play tackle in certain situations and packages, but he’ll spend more of his time at strong side end. It’s a terrific starting combination, even if Williams has reached his ceiling; I don’t think he has, but Williams is steady, consistent and productive. Simon’s move inside leaves a vacancy at tackle, one the Buckeyes hope to fill with massively talented sophomore Johnathan Hankins. Talent, size, explosiveness and aggressiveness? Hankins has that and more, and should he get his conditioning in order he looks like Ohio State’s next great defensive lineman. Still, Hankins is unproven. Where he lines up depends greatly on junior Garrett Goebel, who could play nose tackle, giving Hankins more freedom inside. If Hankins is as good as advertised – and I realize he’s still inexperienced – Ohio State could be terrific up front.

It’s time for Etienne Sabino to be a factor. No, I’m serious this time: that line has been regurgitated annually, in this space and elsewhere, and Sabino has yet to make the impact most expected upon his arrival in 2008. This fall presents the junior’s greatest opportunity yet at cracking the starting lineup, as Ohio State lost two starters to graduation and another pair of contributors to transfer and suspension, respectively. So it seems like Sabino will get the nod on the strong side – not his most comfortable spot, but one that will play well to his size and strength. Junior Storm Klein (18 tackles, 1 interception) will open the year as Ohio State’s starter in the middle, with returning starter Andrew Sweat (41 tackles), a senior, on the weak side. And there are a pair of true freshmen, Curtis Grant and Ryan Shazier, who will play. One more new face: you’ve probably heard of linebackers coach Mike Vrabel.

It’s in the secondary that Ohio State gets back a healthy Tyler Moeller – heading into his sixth year – and C.J. Barnett, adding depth to a loaded crop of safeties. It’s nearly an embarrassment of riches: Moeller, Barnett, Orhian Johnson, Christian Bryant and more. Bryant, who impressed as a freshman in 2010, is too good not to find a home for somewhere in this secondary. But Moeller’s healthy return should find him again serve as Ohio State’s nickel back, a fifth starter in the secondary. So where does that leave Bryant? Either he runs second behind Moeller, still playing a ton but not starting, or he moves over to cornerback, where it seems he’d be a nice fit. One thing that seems set: Barnett will join Johnson (50 tackles, 1 interception) at strong and free safety, respectively.

Those are some nice options at safety; some of this depth hinges on Moeller’s ability to stay healthy, but he’ll be firm and focused heading into what really, absolutely should be his final season. I think his past injury concerns are why O.S.U. is still listing Bryant at nickel back, as if the Buckeyes could feel secure in Moeller’s ability to remain on the field it would make sense to transition Bryant back to cornerback. Let’s say that doesn’t occur: in the case, Ohio State will put forth a starting cornerback duo of junior Travis Howard and either Bradley Roby or Dominic Clarke. I just think Bryant needs to see the field in some significant capacity.

Position battle(s) to watch

Quarterback So instead of merely needing a replacement for the first five games of 2011, Ohio State needs a new full-time starter. A position of nearly unparalleled strength thus becomes a question mark: there’s talent to pick from but little experience. In order of experience, Ohio State’s options at quarterback are fifth-year senior Joe Bauserman, sophomore Ken Guiton, redshirt freshman Taylor Graham and true freshman Braxton Miller. The Buckeyes need to make a quick decision in order to provide some continuity to an offense that badly needs some relief, but it’s absolutely vital that Fickell and his staff take their time and make the right choice. Obviously. It’s probably safe to say that Bauserman has a leg up thanks to his experience, which includes two years of service as Pryor’s backup. Last fall, Bauserman hit on 16 of 22 attempts for 174 yards and 2 scores, all in garbage time. Guiton made two attempts last fall as a redshirt freshman; Graham didn’t play last fall, of course, while Miller arrived on campus in time to participate in spring drills. And Miller impressed in that small sample size, quickly grasping the basics of this offense while showing the ability that led many to label him the quarterback of the future. Everyone thought the future would arrive in 2012 at the earliest, however. To me, this seems like a competition that won’t really be decided until at least mid-September, as Ohio State opens the year with two teams it should beat with relative ease, Akron and Toledo. The Buckeyes could thus start Bauserman but also play whichever quarterback — or quarterbacks — they think can also lead this offense. By the heart of Big Ten play, O.S.U. needs to have made a firm decision. If it’s Bauserman, it’s because of his experience. If it’s Guiton, it’s because he has the best blend of athleticism and time spent in the system. If it’s Miller, it’s because he just too good to keep off the field.

Game(s) to watch

Is there more or less juice surrounding this year’s Michigan game than in the past? I’d still say more even without Tressel back in the fold, and Michigan’s Brady Hoke just adds fuel to the fire on a daily basis, it seems. That game continues to be the most important on Ohio State’s schedule. A return to the Rose Bowl hinges on how the Buckeyes fare against Wisconsin and Penn State, with both games coming at home. In any other year, you’d think that would pave Ohio State’s path to Pasadena. Could Toledo knock off the Buckeyes on Sept. 10? Some may put Ohio State on upset alert, but don’t buy into that claptrap for a second.

Season breakdown & prediction

In a nutshell There’s just too much swirling around this program for Ohio State to maintain its legendary run atop the Big Ten. Too much along the sidelines: Fickell’s going to be learning on the fly, which is a frightening scenario for a team with such lofty yearly expectations. Too much on the roster: outside of the typical attrition due to graduation, the Buckeyes must replace a would-be senior quarterback and go forward without three additional key figures for the first portion of the season. How could any team survive such issues? Well, this isn’t just any team or program; it’s Ohio State, and there’s enough talent rising up through this roster to fill the starting spots left vacant. So there’s talent, plenty of it, though much of it on the younger end. And that’s a problem for Ohio State – not a 6-6 problem, but this sort of youth and inexperience would lead me to think closer to 8-4 or 9-3 when taken in conjunction with the coaching changes. What will O.S.U. get at quarterback? Will anyone step up at wide receiver? Depth along the offensive line? These are pretty meaningful questions for any team, let alone one entering a period of great unknown: no real idea of who its next coach will be, no idea about the future of its athletic department, Ohio State is in a state of transition. For now, until everything becomes settled, O.S.U. can’t be viewed as the Big Ten favorite. It’s been a long time since anyone’s uttered that phrase.

Dream season Despite all the off-field drama, Ohio State does what it usually does: 11-1, tops in the Big Ten.

Nightmare season Everything that has taken place since December takes its toll on a roster and staff beaten down by the troubling developments, leaving O.S.U. with less than eight wins for the first time since 2001, Tressel’s debut season.

In case you were wondering

Where do Ohio State fans congregate? Begin with Eleven Warriors, which is nothing if not consistently excellent. For message board chatter, take a trip to Buckeye PlanetThe-OzoneBuckeye Grove and Buckeye Sports. For additional coverage, check out Buckeye CommentaryThe Buckeye Blog and Our Honor Defend.

Word Count

Through 104 teams 325,623.

Up Next

Who is No. 16? Three former coaches at tomorrow’s program went on to win at least 10 games in a season at a B.C.S. conference institution.

You can also follow Paul Myerberg and Pre-Snap Read on Twitter.

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Comments

  1. Mendenhall4Pres says:

    Texas A&M is next – the three coaches are Jackie Sherrill, Gene Stallings, and of course, Bear Bryant. Interestingly, all three of them did it in the SEC. Perhaps coaches have been trying to tell the Aggies something about the SEC for a long time…

  2. Patrick says:

    Except if it’s Texas A&M, then the question is wrong, as Dennis Franchione also won 10 games at Alabama, making it four coaches, not three, who have won 10-plus games at BCS conference schools.

  3. Patrick says:

    The better answer is Oklahoma State, with Les Miles (LSU), Jimmy Johnson (Miami, Fla.) and Pappy Waldorf (Cal).

  4. Eksynyt says:

    We’re only through 104 teams, Paul. I realize it’s midnight on the east coast when u post this though.

    Paul: I only wish We were through 114 teams. The end is drawing near, however.

  5. Freakville says:

    Franchione did not “go on to” Alabama. He came from the tide to the gomers.

  6. Gotham Gator says:

    This is too high given all the turmoil and changes. For one thing, they lost their head coach, and he was among the best in the business.

  7. CH says:

    Uh…lose the head coach, lose the star QB, and several players are still suspended for the first 5 games and you ranked them this high?
    Love your writing Paul, but next year, this will be an embarrassing selection for you.

  8. m (Ag) says:

    If we’re talking Aggies, you have to add a 4th coach-Dana Bible, who won 10 games at Texas.

    It’s also worth mentioning Emory Bellard, who won 9 games at Mississippi State (there’s the SEC again) after leaving A&M.

  9. SixWinSeason says:

    Go Toledo!!!!!

  10. Nickdaquik says:

    Lot of info in a pretty good write up on the buckeyes. As a lot of the posters have said they think this too low of a rating and if you listen to the talking heads at ESPN they would have you believe Ohio State won’t win this year.

    I’m here to tell you that is not the case. The cupboard is still full of talent at Ohio State and too much has been made of the 5 players suspended, the loss of head coach Tressel and the lack of returners on the d. Coach Fickell has been handed the keys to the Ferrari and he won’t drive 55 like the last owner. I think he will be the coach of the year in the big ten.
    Braxton Miller from day one will be as good as Pryor running the ball and once he gets the playbook down a better passer.
    Running back will be more explosive with Herron out the first five games.
    Adams is a loss at tackle but his replacement will be serviceable.
    D-line is going to cause every team problems. Big Hank is a beast that requires a double team every play, Williams is a future NFL player as is Simon. That is 3 future NFL players on the same D-line. No other team in the country has that. The back seven gets two players back from injury this season and will be more athletic then last year.
    Bottom line is Only Miami(if they don’t suspend 12 players) wisconsin, and Nebraska scare me. If Ohio State can get some solid qb play meaning limit turnovers and put up a few big plays a game they should be a top ten team once again.

  11. Bill condon says:

    OSU always gets the breaks from sports writers, and they always disappoint. They play in the second weakest BCS conference, and they inflate their win totals with patsies outside the conference. Only way they could win a BCS bowl was to arrange to play a mid-level SEC team, Arkansas–picked by the Sugar Bowl because they’d fill seats. I predict a humbling year foe the Buckeyes, as all the chickens come home to roost.

  12. nizerdone says:

    Hi CH,
    Thanks for writing in. You’re insight is remarkable. My previous statement is only true if, in fact, today was opposite day, which unfortunately for you it is not. Do you honestly believe tOSU is going to finish below 17th in the nation? If you do, do you wear a crash helmet to work? Are you strapped in to the bus? How will it feel when the completely locked and loaded tOSU fires out a missile in the can of whatever team you follow? Would you bet against tOSU against anyone this year? If so, who? Prepare to get your lips ready, broski.
    Sincerely,
    Nizerdone

  13. nizerdone says:

    Hi Bill Condoms,
    Good to hear from you again. Get worse btw. tOSU always disappoints? How so? Would it be disappointing if your team made it to the most BCS bowl games (even with one game vacated!)? Would it be disappointing if your team won 6 straight Big 10 (or whatever BCS conference) titles? Please be more informed before you carelessly comment about tOSU – don’t hate us because you ain’t us…guy. Get slow.
    Talk soon sweet cheeks,
    Nizerdone

  14. TresselBall says:

    So you’re an OSU player and you look at Miami… what are you thinking? We got tats… they got yachts/cash/hoes/parties…

    Do the haters still want the book thrown at tOSU? Tragically, probably so.

  15. Angst says:

    Hey Clownshoes (aka nizerdone):

    Try to avoid lite beers this fall, because your tears will water down any adult beverages you may be drinking when your buckeyes crash and burn before the NCAA drops the hammer on them.

    Others will be crying as well, but those will be tears of laughter.

    BTW, a little refresher:

    2006: Florida 41 Ohio St 14
    2007: LSU 38 Ohio St 24

    Getting a pass to get spanked on national TV 2 years in a row is nothing to brag about.

  16. nizerdone says:

    Hi Angst,
    Thanks for reminding us that tOSU was in the BCS title game 2 years in a row. Pretty amazing accomplishment. Ironically convenient you didn’t bring up any of our BCS bowl wins. I’ll let that slide, you’ll obviously google it after you read my note and, in the fashion of being mentally jackhammered, furiously pound your fist on your desk at work, or should I say food prep counter. By “crash and burn” what do you mean? And NCAA drops the hammer on them? Maybe you’ve missed the latest news on how the NCAA meeting went with tOSU (< 4 hours). Can you even read? Who's reading this for you?
    Sincerely,
    Nizerdone

  17. Angst says:

    nizerzone,

    You think I’m angry & upset that O$U got dismantled on nat’l TV by an order of magnitude better competition? I found it hilarious that your star QB Smith had the lowest quarterback rating *ever* in bowl history.

    Also amusing how the Big Integer gets smoked on a frequent basis whenever they play decent competition outside that lower tier collection of teams you call a conference. If you’re proud of being the tallest person at a midget convention… well, then more power to you.

    My biggest guffaws came when dOhio State had to cheat to *finally* win a game vs a middle SEC team only to have it forfeited along with every other game for that season! Futility, thy name is Ohio State.

    BTW, the compulsion of buckeye fans to tack on “THE” in front of the school’s name… very sad. Don’t feel so threatened by Ohio U; they are just a little MAC college that the Big Integer likes to feast on to pad their records.

    PS: I love the “food prep counter” comment. It’s called “projection”… look it up during one of your breaks.

  18. gtwrek says:

    OSU, the school where every high school graduate in the state is guarenteed admission. That’s some high falutin’ academics there. No wonder the football is so good.

    But not this year, OSU was all Tressell. And with Nebraska added to the mix, oof. I think OSU makes a bowl game, but with a calendar date in December.

    Bottom line is Texas, OSU and UGA are all being overrated based on their name. The good news is that it doesn’t matter, they still have to play the games (very soon now).

  19. CH says:

    nizerdone,
    I follow Florida and I’m the last thing from an osuhater. In fact, every time I find and osu fan I thank them. Without the buckeyes, Florida would have one less football/basketball National Championship. We love playing overhyped, outclassed opponents from weaker conferences.
    While osu wins conference titles….the SEC is winning another National Title. If you’re going to play – play the best.

    Tresselball, (wonder what ball tressel is playing with now) – thanks for pointing out that the buckeyes suck at cheating too.

  20. BobJ says:

    I posted Paul’s Top Five golfers list on a golf forum I read. See the responses here:

    http://thesandtrap.com/t/52578/footballer-picks-top-five-golfers

  21. TresselBall says:

    CH,

    Thanks for chiming back in with your tremendous insights. Or not.

    Only a Sans-Education-Conference fan would view OSU’s minor (compared to Miami’s) infractions as “teh fails” at cheating. Think of what would happen if the NCAA compliance investigators (two guys at Yahoo sports) actually investigated the SEC!

    As far as Tressel, when your mom comes back from the grocery with your herp meds, come up out of the basement and ask her to google for his recent football activities. Here’s a hint: hanging out with football royalty at the next level.

  22. nizerdone says:

    Hi Angst,
    I was surprised to find out you’re Greek. Did you really bring up QB rating? You can’t be serious. If you want to follow completely irrelevant metrics to rate QBs, that’s fine – I’ll just use the Heisman Award as my barometer. Have some.
    Are you suggesting that the Big 10 is a traditionally weak conference? If so, how? If you can’t answer with an intelligent comment, swallow bleach.
    Dude, did you say “cheat”? tOSU are the cheaters? EVERY single BCS conference team (with the exception of 2) has been hit with infractions for “cheating” in the last 10 years. I repeat, every team but 2 – do you know the 2? Let me help you, Penn State and Stanford. Get worse for not knowing that.
    Nothing to say about your comment of THE. Again, don’t hate us bc you ain’t us. Prestige is alive and well in Columbus – you probably couldn’t even get in.
    Lastly, as you’ll read (or someone will read for you) I addressed your questions/comments directly. You did not do the same. So let me ask again, By “crash and burn” what do you mean? And NCAA drops the hammer on them? ALSO: Can you even read? Who’s reading this for you?
    Sincerely,
    Nizerdone

  23. nizerdone says:

    Hi Gtwrek,
    How are you? What school did you attend?…for college?
    Let me help you with tOSU admission standards: public ivy. Google it. Have someone read it to you. Let your soul erode.
    Sincerely,
    Nizerdone

  24. Angst says:

    nizerdone,

    So, in your world metrics only matter when they support your position? If anything Smith’s ineptitude that has carried over to the NFL only continues to erode the status of the Heisman Trophy (now a media popularity contest like American “Idle”).

    Yes; the Big Interger (someday they’ll learn how to count) is an inferior conference. How do I measure that? Do some research and tell me their bowl win-loss record over the last 10 years. Winning games vs the MAC early each season doesn’t count. Sorry to splash the cold water of reality on you… my bad.

    While I’m in delusion-busting mode… don’t think O$U has escaped the NCAA just yet; a decision has yet to be made. As is evident by you and others, the “don’t cheat” message hasn’t sunk in yet. The NCAA would be doing a disservice to College Football by not making an example of duh Ohio State.

    Crash & Burn = Good luck having “Adam Sandler” as your head coach before NCAA sanctions kick in that affect scholarships. Better hope the administration gives a little sweetener to the Big Integer refs to save the team’s bacon this season.

    Loved the reference that I could not gain admittance to O$U! I grew up in Ohio… already was offered and turned them down. Anyone with a pulse in Ohio can get in to O$U. Funny that you think that event is prestigious. Don’t confuse mirth for hate.

    PS: Yes; I can read… quite well thank you. Can you comprehend?

  25. Noefli says:

    Nizer’s “anti-anyone who questions Ohio State” vitriol is definitely in the PSR Top 3, joining Jim Narby’s “anti-Nebraska” and Paul’s “anti-brevity.” That’s pretty elite company.

    Speaking of elite company, I didn’t know that OSU was on the expanded list of public ivies. I suppose that football blog comments can teach something new every day. Based on my calculations – and I went to a public ivy institution but didn’t study math – OSU’s 76% acceptance rate in 2009 means that about 1 in 4 people has his or her soul eroded by the school’s rigorous admission standards. I’d also venture that Gtwrek has some allegiance or affiliation to Georgia Tech, a school ranked about 20 spots ahead of Ohio State in the US News and World Report’s National Universities rankings.

    Public Ivy always struck me as a backhanded compliment kind of term, like “Best non-SEC Conference, “Most Famaous Baldwin Brother Other than Alec,” and “Best Soccer Team Outside of Europe.”

  26. nizerdone says:

    Dear Angst,

    I will address you later when I have more time. So much to write…

    Dear Noefli,

    They are. You did? Neat. Oh, no math? Well they must have taught reading. Irrespective of that, perhaps you need to find some better data on admissions at tOSU. Just a suggestion.

    In Haste,

    Nizerdone

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