Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Here's that address again - http://thebuckeyebattlecry.com - put it in your bookmarks!
I've been writing truncated posts here and linking to the new site for the past week for one big reason - this blog is part of the Big Ten Bloggers, and we have a feeder (it's in the right column, a little bit down from this post). The new domain was not yet added into the Big Ten Bloggers feeder, but the old blog was. So I double-posted and remained in the feeder that way.
The new domain is now in the BTB feeder, so this old blogspot blog has no further use.
Therefore, this is the final posting on this specific blog. Come join the New BBC at http://thebuckeyebattlecry.com
And thanks for staying loyal to me. The BBC is what you make of it, and I appreciate all your support.
The Big Ten went a perfect 11-0 last week, the first time that has happened in….well, it was the first time ever. The Big Ten is actually 18-3 right now, but don’t get too excited…we were 18-4 last year, and they didn’t give us any credit for it. I’m not sure why, it’s not like any of us lost to a Div. 1-AA school….ummm, never mind.
However, the 11-0 record for week 2 was not entirely unexpected. We were favored to win in 10 of those games, so we must all pay tribute to Minnesota for pulling off a HUGE upset on the road. Congrats, Gophers!
This week’s games….not so easy. It’ll be tough for us to go 11-0, but we’ll give it a crack. Here is what The BBC is hoping to see in each Big Ten game this week.
------CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THIS POST---------
Tuesday, September 09, 2008
This week’s host for the Big Ten Bloggers Roundtable is Dave from Maize and Brew, who doesn’t get the credit he deserves for his blog. His team blows but his words rarely do.
Here’s what Dave wants to know this week;
1. We’re two weeks in and everyone in the Big Ten, minus the two Michigan schools and Illinois, are unbeaten. This week marks the end of your early “tune-up” or serious OOC play. Are you satisfied with the way your team has played against the cupcakes on your schedule, or happy with the way they’ve competed against serious competition?
No. Any Ohio State fan who is satisfied right now didn’t see the first 35 minutes of the game on Saturday.
However, we are 2-0. I believe the only way we will get into the BCS National Championship Game is by going 12-0, and therefore we are on track to do that.
I’ll be satisfied when we are 13-0. But I’ll be happy and temporarily content if we go 3-0 first.
---------------CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THIS POST---------
Monday, September 08, 2008
Courtesy Adam Rittenberg of ESPN.com’s Big Ten blog, we hear that the war of words between Michigan and Notre Dame (or “Cripple Fight ‘08″, as Brian from MGoBlog lovingly calls it) is heating up fast.
Apparently, Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis riled up the maize and blue as he was overheard saying “to hell with Michigan”.
We Ohio State fans recognize the complete redundancy in Weis’ supposed comment, but the words are not very popular in that state up north.
--------CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THIS POST----------
Here's what's rattling around the old brain at the moment;
He played for the enemy in college, and he plays for the enemy now. Despite that, it was unsettling to hear that Tom Brady's season is finished after suffering a knee injury that will require surgery.
Best wishes on your recovery, Tom Brady.
--------CLICK HERE FOR THE REST OF THIS POST---------
It didn’t take long after the game on Saturday for the text messages to start coming in on my cell phone. A couple of my friends were agitated, and believed that we should have played Terrelle Pryor a lot earlier (and a lot more) once the offense showed signs of trouble.I wrote it off as anger and frustration. But then I started to see more signs of it. Later, a relative of mine said the same thing, then I saw a message board flare-up over Pryor’s minimal playing time.
----------CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THIS POST----------
Sunday, September 07, 2008
The AP and Coaches polls have just been released. Ohio State has dropped to #5. Yes, I'm pissed about it.
Ohio State did not play like the #1 team yesterday, and nobody in their wildest dreams expected them to rise in the polls. But the talk for three straight months has been "whoever wins between Ohio State and USC will be #1". Now the voters have given themselves an out should the Buckeyes win this weekend. I have no reasonable expectation that they will allow us to leapfrog three other teams if we knock off the Trojans, and the voters will puss out by saying just that.
--------CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THIS POST----------
Neither did I.
But let’s take a look back at The BBC’s weekly feature and see what we were hoping to see in the Ohio game.
1) A touchdown on the very first Ohio State possession - Fail. A quick three-and-out to start the game was a nasty foreshadow for what we were going to witness the entire first half.
2) A stop on the very first Ohio University possession - Success! OU got a first down on the drive, but we kept the Bobcats in check, allowing 17 yards on 6 plays.
-------click here to read the rest of this post-------------
Saturday, September 06, 2008
While stepping back and looking at today’s 26-14 win over Ohio University, I was reminded of 2007’s battle against Akron last year. We won that game 20-2, but looked bad for most of the game.
Is there a reason why Ohio State played poorly in both these games? They were both against weaker in-state opponents, and in neither game should we have had to sweat the eventual outcome. Perhaps there is no true theory behind why Ohio State looked bad today, besides the simple conclusion that we were overlooking the Bobcats towards next week’s USC game.
----------CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THIS POST (IT'S WORTH IT)--------
Stuff that The BBC is thinking about right now;
- Since he became head coach, Jim Tressel’s all-time record against teams ranked #1….go ahead and take a quick guess. We’ll tell you the answer in a few seconds.
- Looking deeper at the game, our defense is NASTY. We held the Bobcats to 35% in the air. A few nice Bobcat broken runs was the difference between this game and a MUCH bigger win.
-----------CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THIS POST---------------
-----------CLICK HERE FOR THE REST OF THIS STORY--------------
In case you're wondering why I'm still using the blogspot page and linking to my own domain, Ithe new domain is not yet linked into the Big Ten Bloggers feed, so I am putting fragments on the old page so the stories get more exposure. Cheap ploy, but it works.
Friday, September 05, 2008
Penn State’s defense is in a little bit of trouble now. And it’s not because the store is closed and they ain’t got no more Doritos in the house.
Tuesday night, police investigated a noise complaint at the apartment of four Penn State players, and detected a “strong smell of burning marijuana”. Hours later, a serach warrant was delivered and marijuana was confiscated from the apartment. Charges are being filed against some of the party-goers in attendance that night, but no further information about that is known at this time.
----------READ MORE OF THIS STORY--------------
This blog has moved to The New BBC. I'll post pieces of stories here until the Big Ten Bloggers feeder file is updated with the proper linkage.
Tuesday, September 02, 2008
The new site can be found at http://www.THEbuckeyebattlecry.com
Yes, it's our own domain. Hell, yeah.
Change your bookmarks and come visit the new site!
This week's Roundtable leader is Black Heart, Gold Pants. Adam's come up with five questions, and here they are. Let's get going!
The coaching surprised me a lot. Normally in a warm-up game, coaches put their starters in for a while, then bench everybody in favor of the second team, then the third team towards the very end. It usually means you're watching two JV teams go at it in the fourth quarter.
Not here. Tressel sat Beanie Wells after his first drive to give Boom Herron some work against starters, then pulled the entire first team for the third drive of the game, going with Terrelle Pryor and a slew of freshmen linemen. Wells, Todd Boeckman, and most of the starters saw more game time throughout the contest, but the backups saw plenty of time against YSU's starting lineup, and that will only serve them well individually and as a team down the stretch.
Yes, I'm optimistic, but obviously that optimism will balance with the news on Beanie Wells' health. Fortunately, that appears to be leaning in favor of the Buckeyes having him back for the Ohio or the USC game.
I must say that I was very disappointed in our punter's complete lack of punts inside the 20-yard-line. You've got to win the battle of field position, and we never pinned them back with a punt. That's inexcusable.
The #2 story is that late at night, while everyone else is asleep, Beanie Wells' LEFT foot has been hard at work at the Ohio State University Medical Center, harvesting it's OWN stem cells. By tomorrow morning, we should have completed the process.
We can rebuild him. We have the technology. We have the capability to make the world's first bionic man. Beanie Wells will be that man. Better. Stronger. Faster.
Sorry, but I can't admit what I didn't do. I wasn't rooting for that 2-pointer, mainly for two reasons. One, my girlfriend went to the University of Utah. She cheers for my team, I cheer for hers. Two, it was SO much more cathartic pointing out that the only quarterback who could have led Michigan to victory that day had already signed with The Ohio State University.
MUCH less interesting. Here's a chart to prove it, sort of;
|Team||Last week opp||This week opp||More exciting?|
|Indiana||W. Kentucky||Murray State||no|
|Illinois||Missouri||E. Illinois||hell, no|
|Michigan||Utah||Miami (OH)||hell, no|
|Michigan State||California||E. Michigan||hell, no|
|Minnesota||N. Illinois||Bowling Green||yes|
|Penn State||Coastal Carolina||Oregon State||yes|
Why, no. I LOVE PANTS!!!!
FYI, in the next 48 hours, The BBC will move to it's own domain. Stay tuned for the news and the official launch.
Monday, September 01, 2008
Michigan lost their first game of the 2008 season 167 days before the season even began.
What? How do you mean?
Michigan's loss to Utah on Saturday can be traced back to a complete lack of leadership on offense. Their two quarterbacks struggled at best (50% completion rate combined), and their running game was downright awful (36 yards on 25 carries). Their longest drive of the entire day was 45 yards, ending with a fumble. Their longest scoring drive was 33 yards.
If they had one go-to guy on offense, there would have been some semblance of hope, and confidence in that huddle.
Unfortunately for Michigan, that go-to guy signed with Ohio State 167 days earlier.
Terrelle Pryor rushed for 52 yards (16 more than all of Michigan), and completed 4 of 6 passes for 35 more yards. And he did it in only three offensive series for Ohio State. Oh, and he led his team to 10 points, scoring a TD on a brilliant scramble for the end zone.
Is it fair to say that Pryor's talents would have led Michigan to victory? Absolutely. His talents are made for that offensive scheme, and RichRod's failure to sign him was certainly worth a field goal more. With Pryor, Michigan wins. Without him, they lost.
10 different locations will be graded, and the best spot will become the place where we watch our bowl game.
Week 1 location - Winking Lizard, Canton, Ohio
Quality of food - The menu is loaded. Tons of different appetizers, including the basic staples of apps. 15 different ways to order wings is always nice. Ribs, steaks, sandwiches, and a nice salad menu. They had to have had between 10 and 15 different burgers to choose from, plus all the menu items that makes for a good gameday hangout.
Special note - this is the type of menu you'd expect for a place to watch a game. I don't need creme' brulee with my football.....we're looking for "sports food" here!
I went with potato skins, and they were pretty damn good. Plus, they didn't get stingy with the sour cream, a major bonus. Later, I ordered a chicken caesar salad. Again, it was awesome. Although when the server asked me if I wanted the dressing on the side, I should have said 'yes'. That's my fault, though. The chicken was perfectly cooked. A guy near me got the steak caesar salad, and it looked incredible.
Quality of food - yes, I would recommend Winking Lizard.
Quality of drinks - In three words....oh, hell yes. They've got over 120 different beers to choose from, including their 100-beer World Tour. Ask the bartender for a recommendation, and they'll offer you samples to taste before you order.
You can go with a cheap domestic, or you can try an expensive import. They're all over the map on this feature, and if you're a beer drinker, you already knew about WL.
I tried a Hoegaarden because a cute girl two seats down said to try it. She was right. It was also kinda cool to hear her say "Hoegaarden".
Quality of drinks - yes, I would recommend Winking Lizard. Highly.
Game visibility - Above the bar is a full bank of flat-screens, which were perfect. Two large-screens on the corner walls, and a few other well-placed sets surround the area.
I took a stroll around the place prior to kickoff, and I couldn't really find a spot where I didn't have a decent view of at least one screen. If you're there and you didn't see the game, it's because you didn't want to see the game.
Game visibility - yes, I would recommend the Winking Lizard
Atmosphere - Here's the part where the review gets ugly.
When I arrived, things looked good. All the staff was wearing Ohio State shirts, and the TVs were all tuned to various sports shows (ESPN GameDay, LSU/Appy State, Big Ten Channel preview, golf channel, etc). The house sound was on Kirk Herbstreit, discussing how Bowling Green would upset Pitt. Nice call, Herbie!
Unfortunately, that was as good as it was going to get.
A couple minutes before Noon, each TV slowwwwwwwly changed channels. Just after kickoff, every other set was tuned to the Buckeyes game. The house sound, which was at a decent level when I arrived, could no longer be heard over the din of the crowd. They never bothered to turn it up.
Basically, what I determined from the experience is that Winking Lizard doesn't really get it. They just turned the TVs to a channel and called it a day. There was no real atmosphere for the Buckeyes in the place. They had the game on the screen? Congrats....so did my living room. Give me a reason to come spend money in your place if you want me to watch a game there.
They have a sound system in the place....they should have used it to play TBDBITL before kickoff. No "Sloopy" during halftime, nobody yelling out "O-H", no nothing.
When Beanie scored on the first drive, a fan took the initiative and did an "O-H". Twice. That was about it, though.
The building was between half and three-quarters full, and I think the atmosphere was the reason why. It's entirely possible that Buckeye fans in the area may already know that there are much more fun places to see Ohio State games.
I was so disappointed that I left at halftime and went home to watch the game there.
Atmosphere - No, I wouldn't recommend Winking Lizard in the slightest.
Overall grade - I think this was a great place to eat and have a drink. If you want to go out and meet your friends at a fun place on a Friday night, try Winking Lizard.
The BBC is dedicated to finding the perfect spot to watch an Ohio State game, and this is not the place to do that. If they take advantage of an opportunity and start doing more to fire up the crowd, maybe. But they didn't appear to be interested in giving people anything more than a seat in front of a TV set. Not good enough.
It's safe to say that the Winking Lizard will not be the location for our bowl game this year.
Saturday, August 30, 2008
Thoughts on how the Big Ten performed today? OK, since you asked;
- Ohio State 43, YSU 0
You've seen my initial thoughts, but I'll elaborate more over the next couple of days.
- Penn State 173, Coastal Carolina 10
CC was getting clobbered from the moment they fumbled the opening kickoff. I don't think I can get a full assessment of how good PSU is from that game, but I did see a lot (and I mean A LOT) of broken tackles by Lions players. It looked to be a combination of good PSU play and bad CC effort.
Penn State had 334 yards of rushing, and they were not running up the score. 8 different players carried the ball, and nobody had more than 10 carries. Also, 13 different receivers made the box score. Yes, I said 13.
- Northwestern 30, Syracuse 10
The Wildcats have the potential and they could be a bowl team. The issue is, nobody really knows what kind of damage they can do. Since they played a lousy Syracuse team today, we still don't know what they are capable of, but I've gotta give them an "A" for playing with heart. They were losing to the Orangemen in the 3rd quarter, and they turned it up a notch. You didn't see much of that from this squad the last couple of seasons when they were down in the second half.
- Indiana 31, Western Kentucky 13
Kellen Lewis is a monster. Dude had 144 yards and 2 TDs in the air and 185 yards and 2 TDs on the ground. Those 185 rushing yards came on 9 carries. Yeah, that's correct...he averaged 21 yards a carry.
- Iowa 46, Maine 3
Kirk Ferentz needed a big win after a summer of being beaten to death by police blotters and bad news. He got it.
I didn't get to see this game, and I don't think this game was actually broadcast anywhere. It might have been kept off the air because of some obscure part of Megan's Law. I'll have to look into that.
-Wisconsin 38, Akron 17
The Badgers used a bruising run attack (404 rushing yards) to jump out to an early lead, then got a little scare thrown into them in the second quarter when Akron came back to within 7 points. It didn't last long.
The team that can slow down Wisky's running game will probably be able to beat them. Their passing game is going to struggle (they know it, too, only attempting 10 passes on the day).
-Utah 25, Michigan 23
Don't let anybody fool you. Michigan was in this game only because Utah let them stay in it. The Utes committed 15 penalties on the day, and made stupid mistakes all day long. A pass interference took away a Utah interception and gave Michigan their first TD. Then in the 4th quarter, Utah thought they had won and decided to stop playing. Plus, if somebody doesn't teach Utes QB Brian Johnson when to throw the ball away (and to actually throw it NEAR somebody when he does), they're in big trouble.
Michigan was downright awful on defense, and they have no go-to people anywhere to be found on offense (203 total yards, only 35 yards rushing, and 3-14 on third down). Johnson had over 300 yards passing against Michigan, and because he refused to throw the ball out of bounds, he had negative-66 yards rushing.
Penn State and Michigan State saw this game and are salivating.
-Minnesota 31, Northern Illinois 27
The best game of the entire day. It stayed close all game long, and when the Gophers found themselves down by 3 with 5 minutes to go, they put together a bruising drive for the game-winner (then held on against a near-miracle finish).
Minnesota won't win more than 5 games this year, but their fans found a new love. head Coach Tim Brewster sent his offense onto the field at the 4-yard line on 4th-and-2 with 30 seconds to play in a 3-point game. He could have gone for the easy tie and sent it into OT, but he wanted to send a message to his offense. the offense responded and got the first down and the win. Brewster could have been a major goat if his Gophers had failed that play, but this team needs confidence, and Brewster gave it to them. Kudos.
-Cal 38, Michigan State 31
This was a really exciting game, and MSU nearly won it. The Spartans are on the verge of being a great team. Right now, they are a good team and they will beat you because they take advantage of breaks when they go MSU's way. Sparty needed one more break tonight and couldn't seem to get it. The only problem is see with Michigan State right now is they lack defensive speed. It'll hurt them down the road, but they have the weapons on offense to make up for it.
Side note - ever seen any team thump their chest so much over basic plays like Cal did tonight? Outside of Miami, circa 1980s, of course.
-Missouri 52, Illinois 42
Damn, but I was having a tough time flipping back and forth between this game and MSU. I need a new remote control now.
Like offense? You'll love Illinois this year.
Like defense? You'll hate Illinois this year.
By the way, I think Purdue had a great weekend too. They didn't do anything wrong at all!
What are your thoughts on the Big Ten this weekend?
Mid-week, I posted 8 things I wanted to see in the game. Here's what happened with them;
1) A touchdown on the very first Ohio State possession
Success. We made it interesting, but Wells ripped off a big run on 4th-and-1 for the score.
2) A stop on the very first YSU possession
Success. We got a three-and-out. YSU actually only got one first down in the entire first half, on a penalty.
3) Beanie Wells needs 100-120 yards in the first half
No, but with good reason. Tressel mixed up his game plan, giving second-and-third stringers early action, then putting starters back in throughout the second and third quarters. Beanie, had he played the entire first half, would have easily accomplished this.
4) FG kicking must be perfect on the day
Success. I'm impressed, too. We connected on a 51-yarder and a 54-yarder.
5) 4 to 6 sacks on defense
Not today. We got two, but it should be noted that we forced so many 3-and-outs that YSU didn't get an opportunity to try enough pass plays for us to sack them a lot. OK, so that's a weak argument.
6) 65%+ passing from Todd Boeckman
Success. 74 percent passing for Boeckman. He looked good.
7) At least three possessions for Terrelle Pryor
Success. He got three possessions, and led us to 10 points. His TD was really nice, too.
8) A TD pass for Joe Bauserman
Let's be honest, Hartline got his foot down in the end zone. But it doesn't count, so this one wasn't a success. He'll get one against Ohio.
For the day, I'd say I saw plenty of the stuff I was hoping to see. I'm happy with the 43-0 win. Now it'll be complete when I hear that Beanie's OK.
How about you?
Beanie Wells had x-rays taken, and they came out negative. No broken bones, and the immediate diagnosis is that we can eliminate the deepest fears about his right foot. Jim Tressel is giving a press conference now and is upbeat about him. Just said that they'll monitor him and it's a day-to-day thing.
As for the game, some things that stand out for me;
- I LOVED the fact that we mixed in a lot of backups early in the game. Boom Herron was the featured back on our second drive, Terrelle Pryor was the QB on the third drive, and we had three freshmen linemen in on offense (a LOT) in the first quarter.
- Tressel was determined to not let our punter play, wasn't he? Going for a 54-yard FG in the 4th quarter, and having Pryor go for it on 4th-and-7 in YSU territory late showed he was giving everyone (but the punter) a good look.
- Pryor is the real deal. I know he was playing against substandard competition, but he's got some game.
- The Penguins never their deepest penetration on the final play of the game...to the Ohio State 46. They only had one snap on our side of the field the entire day.
- The defense was so good, it was almost boring.
- Total rushing yards, Ohio State 251, YSU negative-11
A full review later.....
(as I'm typing this, Michigan is running onto the field for their game. OOOH, Vernon Gholston just got another sack against them)
If you're in the area, come on down to Winking Lizard in Canton. I'll be there watching the game for my "Buckeye Hotspots" week 1 review.
Later tonight, we'll talk more about the game at The BBC, and in the next couple days, I'll let you know if Winking Lizard is a worthwhile place to watch an Ohio State game.
By the way, if you're still frantically looking for channel 333/334 on your Time Warner Cable list, you won't find it. It's not been added yet. TWC has an automated announcement waiting for you when you call to ask about it. It says that the channel will not be added until kickoff.
As I mentioned yesterday, I have no faith that TWC will be able to add the channel at exactly the right moment. Plus, this shows that TWC knows absolutely nothing about the average college football fan.
We as college football fans ALWAYS turn the channel on AT LEAST 15 minutes before the show starts. In my 3 decades of watching the sport, I have NEVER once waited until the start of the game to turn to the right channel. But because of TWCs last-second maneuver, there will be tens of thousands of households that will have to wait until the last second, then find the channel to turn to it.
And that's IF TWC does the job right.
I just can't imagine what benefit this move has and why TWC would do this.
Anyway, I'll be out and since the channel will not be added until the last second, I can't possibly DVR it for later viewing. Somebody let me know if they added it on time.
Friday, August 29, 2008
I'm nervous that Time Warner Cable will screw the pooch.
If you haven't noticed yet, the channel isn't yet activated on your TWC cable box. Hell, the channel doesn't even EXIST yet. 18 hours before kickoff, if you try to go to channel 333, nada.
This morning, I called TWC and asked when the channel would be activated. The operator had no idea, so I asked her to please check. After being on hold for a while, she returned to say that her supervisor said "sometime just before kickoff". I don't know about you, but that's just not good enough.
If any of you actually trust a cable company to do something on time, I've got this great piece of real estate. Be at home between Noon and 4pm and I'll stop by to sell it to you.
Last year, if you remember (and I'll bet you didn't), the beginning of the OSU/YSU contest was not seen by Big Ten Network subscribers. The BTN forgot to flip a switch for the right channel, and we were all watching an alternate game for quite some time. Ohio State scored a touchdown before anybody got to see a down of Buckeye football on the new network that day.
So my fears were somewhat justified last year. I'm just not confident enough. TWC should have made today the target date and have 24 hours to fix any potential glitches or problems that arise.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
How do you think Michigan's current wide recievers feel, knowing that their coach would bench them if a guy who shaves his chest showed up to practice?
Since Phelps trains in Ann Arbor, surely Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez has dropped a hint. He is starting five freshmen in the Wolverines' debut of his no-huddle spread Saturday against Utah. One more novice -- one who would challenge Tiger Woods on the competitive spectrum -- couldn't hurt.
"Oh, I would put him at wide receiver," Rodriguez said. "With those long arms, he'd be perfect."
I think it's cool that Michigan will be honoring Phelps at halftime of their game this weekend.
At the very least, somebody in the stadium will know what it's like to win 8 times this year.
Whenever a lower-echelon team takes on a Top 5 squad, it's their game of the year. If they knock off one of the elite, their name will be sung throughout the land. So believe that YSU is taking this one seriously. But thanks to Appalachian State (and the eternal wisdom of Jim Tressel never letting his team look ahead), Ohio State will not be shocked by anything on Saturday.
But there are plenty of questions about the '08 version of the Ohio State Buckeyes, and we can start answering those slowly with a few steps on Saturday. Here's what I want to see from the Buckeyes as they take on the Penguins at Noon.
1) A touchdown on the very first Ohio State possession - The Buckeyes cannot start slow. There can be no questions about this team early. Be it a quick strike or a long sustained drive, they must begin their season forcefully.
2) A stop on the very first YSU possession - The Penguins do not have much of a chance and they know it. They'll fire out of the locker room with great enthusiasm, and the longer they get to stay energetic, the tougher it'll be on us. Push their hopes down fast and get inside their heads from play one. A three-and-out is not entirely necessary, but it'll help.
3) Beanie Wells needs 100-120 yards in the first half - Wells isn't going to see much game time in the second half, so getting his numbers early is important. Plus, if he gets to the century mark fast, it'll allow more time to see our backups in action. Give Boom Herron the ball and see what he does.
4) FG kicking must be perfect on the day - Our kicking unit has been the biggest weakness during pre-season. Ryan Pretorius' leg might make the difference in a big USC game, and the more confidence he has in Games 1 and 2, the better he'll be in Los Angeles.
5) 4 to 6 sacks on defense - I want to hear the talk about "no dropoff in talent" from the Big Ten announcers. There will be plenty of "how will the defensive line play with Vernon Gholston" discussion, and that'll squish it like a bug fast.
6) 65%+ passing from Todd Boeckman - The more accurate he is, the quicker he'll get to the bench, which leads us to;
7) At least three possessions for Terrelle Pryor - Let the kid see the field in Game 1 and he'll get at least a few jitters out of his system. He'll need it when he inevitably sees the field at USC for some trickery that Tressel has in store.
8) A TD pass for Joe Bauserman - He's going to be the forgotten QB, barring injury, for his Ohio State career. Let's give him some glory and put him in the scoring books for all eternity.
What do you want to see on Saturday? Add your points in the comments.
Canton, Ohio's own Mike Doss. He won a state championship at McKinley, and wanted that feeling again so badly that he delayed applying for the NFL and returned to Ohio State for his senior season in 2002.
Risky? Hell yes. Did it pay off? Hell, yes!
Next up is our current owner of the #2 jersey, the incomparable Malcolm Jenkins....
(speaking of guys who came back to win it all their senior year....don't let us down, Jenkins!)
Finally, the master. The first Ohio State jersey I ever owned was this guy's number. The greatest pair of hands ever to don a Buckeye uniform, Cris Carter;
So with two days before kickoff, The BBC salutes you, Mike, Cris, and Malcolm. Enjoy your day!
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
If you do not have a cable box, you still can see the game! It's on channel 77.
The above information, courtesy Time Warner Cable pre-recorded message.
UPDATE - High-def feeds supposedly will be on Channel 757, but they "might" not have the HD set up until Monday, too late for Game 1, but cool for the following games.
Florida's got two, both on offense
USC's got two, both on defense
LSU's got two, one on each
Oklahoma's got two, one on each
Those are the elite teams on the NCAA, agreed?
Ohio State's got four players on the team. Beanie Wells and Alex Boone on offense, James Laurinaitis and Malcolm Jenkins on defense.
If you're playing a down against Ohio State this year, be it offense or defense, there's two All-Americans on the other side on that line of scrimmage, waiting for you.
We're reaching back into history (just a little bit) for our Buckeye player of the day today.
That's Dimitrious Stanley to the left, one of our speedsters from the 90s.
And here's the highlight I remember the most from his days in scarlet and gray, the opening kickoff from the Notre Dame game in South Bend;
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
We'll visit ten locations* during the season, and we'll revisit the best location for our bowl game.
The main criteria that we are going to be judging is food quality, drink prices, game visibility (does the location have enough televisions to give everyone a good view), and atmosphere (does the location get involved with the spirit of Buckeye football, or did they just turn the TV to the right channel).
The BBC is proud to announce that the first Buckeye Hotspot will be the Winking Lizard in Canton. Come and join me at 5710 Fulton Dr NW. Click here for directions, and Go Buckeyes!
* = It's only ten games because I will be in San Diego visiting my girlfriend for the Minnesota game, and I will be attending either the Illinois game or the Michigan game)
The Big Ten Network
Last night, Time Warner Cable announced that it had reached an agreement with the Big Ten Network. Thankfully, Ohio State fans will get to see every game from the comforts of home.
UPDATE - Some of my readers have pointed out that the BTN is supposed to be part of a sports package that many people will already have. This of course, lessens my fears of an overloaded customer-service system at TWC. Here's hoping they are right. They probably are.
Quoted below is what I originally wrote, but it looks as if it's all just me getting paranoid.
As of now, no details about the agreement are available, and any calls made to TWC are met with a pre-recorded announcement praising the upcoming broadcast of Buckeye games. But TWC is not accepting any orders to add the channel yet. They claim that the channel will be added "in time for Ohio State's first game", but will it be ready in time to accept all their suscribers' calls, and add the channel to that many people's packages.In the meantime, I'm excited to see BTN show up on my channel listing.
If you called up Time Warner Cable last week and asked them to add HBO, you would have that channel within five minutes. No problem. But the anticipated number of callers last week was relatively low. Your request could be completed fast because there wasn't a backlog of callers waiting.
When you call to add BTN, you'll be one of (at least) tens of thousands of people trying to do the same thing.
Time Warner Cable still has to do a LOT before you can see the game on Saturday. The biggest task at hand is finding enough hours in the day and enough customer service representatives to handle the crush of people who will want to add the BTN.
They only have 95 hours to get all these people added in time, and they're not even taking calls for it yet. Cross your fingers, and do NOT wait until Friday or later to call them.
The Cleveland Indians
Who the hell do these guys think they are? Less than three weeks ago, they were 16 games under .500 and cruising towards the offseason. No hope in sight, just 25 players battling for spots on the 2009 squad.
A week ago, I posted a quick blurb about how they had a relatively easy schedule in the near future and that they could regain some respect with a late-season surge.
The Indians have won 8 of their last 11 games and have a pretty easy schedule down the stretch. If you're asking me if I think they'll make up 15 games in the final 6 weeks, my answer is hell no...but they could make it fun.Last night the Tribe won their 8th straight game, and are 14-3 in their last seventeen games. They stand at 11.5 games back of Chicago, and a win tonight will put them in third place. Cliff Lee (18-2) takes the mound against a guy making his first pitch ever in the big leagues.
I still don't believe the Indians are playing past Game #162, but at least they're making it fun for us down the stretch.
Of course, now that I've mentioned it, the odds of Lee winning have decreased.....
He was all set to start last week and capture the top QB role for Baltimore, but a virus derailed it. Baltimore is left with more questions than answers as they head into Thursday's pre-season finale. Apparantly, the job is Smith's if he's healthy. But that is in doubt, as he is still missing practices while taking antibiotics.
Here's hoping Troy gets healthy fast and gets on that field. He's a good guy and I'd like to see him get the starting job.
The Miami Dolphins have chosen their starting QB for the 2008 season opener (and beyond). Chad Pennington gets the job.
Chad Henne is not the best quarterback in Miami. Hell, he's not even the best quarterback in Miami whose name is Chad.
No further comment necessary.
Following up on Michigan RB Kevin Grady, who was arrested for DUI a few weeks ago (he blew a 0.271 in the breathalizer), Rich Rodriquez did the right thing and suspended Grady for at least the Utah game.
But I'll be honest with you....I'm thinking he's still too drunk to play anyway.
I want to thank all my readers. I started this blog in the early stages of the 2006 season, and a prominent blogger told me that he liked my writing and to "keep writing, and people will notice." Thank you, BBC readers for noticing.
August 2008 will be the most popular month in BBC history. We will have topped our all-time highs in both visits and page views before the Buckeyes even take the field on Saturday. If this blog is getting personal bests in the amount of visitors before the season, I can't wait to see the traffic once things get underway.
I'm truly honored by your continued visits, and I promise to keep improving this site for your enjoyment.
Next up, our beloved Santonio Holmes, before he went all yucky on us in a Squeelers uniform;
From the National Championship team of 2002, here's Chris Vance;
And finally, how could we ignore Herbie The Great?
And for a bonus, here's video of Kirk taking it 72 yards. On a freaking option.
Can't wait til Saturday!
Monday, August 25, 2008
Face it, the guy's so cool he gets his own awards list. Anyway, there's a full list to be found on ESPN.com, but The BBC would like to cherry-pick a few awards and take it from there;
- Beanie Wells is listed as the Top Running Back. Damn right, he is. Knowshon Moreno, who has the stupidest name in college football this year, is a close second. Herbie gives a nice shout-out to Javon Ringer at MSU, which just proves he knows what he's talking about.
- Best WR? Can't argue with Michael Crabtree at Texas Tech. The guy is likely to get more yards per game than a lot of QBs will. Special note - Brian Robiskie is the highest-rated B10 WR.
- Travis Beckum gets his due at tight end, as he should. The biggest question is whether or not anybody will be able to throw it to him.
- Tebow and Stafford at Georgia get top honors for various QB honors, and Todd Boeckman gets #2 in the "What a difference a year makes". Not bad that they give awards for future improvement to a guy who got to the BCS title game.....
- Top honors go to Buckeyes in multiple categories, including OL, inside linebacker, outside linebacker, and cornerback. Yeah, true dat Herbie. True dat.
It isn't until late in the awards presentation before I get a little bit peeved. Under "Coaches that will exceed expectations", he's listed Charlie Weis. Sorry to say it Herb, but Charlie Weis will ALWAYS live up to his expectations, because NOBODY ever faults him when his team sucks. He's always considered a God, and he's never done anything at ND. Until Irish fans get their heads out of their asses and stop blaming Ty Willingham for everything Charlie Weis can't do, it'll never end. Weis sucks, end of story.
The preceding paragraph was written without use of the words "heavy", "fat", or "gargantuan buffet-devouring man-boy". I deserve props.
Finally, it's worth noting that Herbie selected his "All-Uni Team -- What A College Football Team Should Look Like". 20 percent of the entire list wears scarlet and gray.
Let's be honest. This Saturday is a warm-up game. We're fine-tuning what we can in expectation of an easy win over Youngstown State. How many different ways can you preview that?
I'll leave that to the rest of the blogosphere. Me, I'm going to give you cold, hard facts about the man inside the sweatervest, Jim Tressel.
Since joining the Buckeyes, Tressel is 73-16, for an .820 winning percentage.
When Tressel's team takes the field on Saturday, it'll be his 90th game as a head coach here.
- His team has been ranked in the Top 25 an incredible 77 times out of those 90 games.
- 62 of those games, the Buckeyes have been ranked in the Top10.
When Ohio State is the higher-ranked team, they are 63-10
When Ohio State is the lower-ranked team, they are 5-3
When neither team is ranked, Ohio State is 6-3
During the regular season, Ohio State is 69-13
During Bowl games, Ohio State is 4-3
In BCS Bowls, Ohio State is 3-2
In 86 of Tressel's 89 Ohio State games, the Buckeyes have either won, or had the ball with a chance to win in the 4th quarter.
Under Tressel, the Buckeyes score 28.8 points per game
Under Tressel, the Buckeyes allow 15.6 points per game.
There ya go. Time to get back to building a website!
We have only 5 more days until college football returns!
Here's Chimdi Chekwa, preparing to make a lot of hits in 2008. He's going to have a great chance to shine early, and The BBC is putting stock in the kid, if only so we can hear Musburger scream "Chimdi Chekwa picks it off" on national TV.
Got your plans made for Saturday? Where will you be watching?
I'll be announcing my plans tomorrow or Wednesday (The BBC is going bar-to-bar in search of the best place to watch a Buckeye game in Stark/Summit counties)
Next up in the picture tour, to the left is Michael Wiley (notice how soooo many of the pictures of running backs have a half-dozen Michigan players WAY in the background?)
Wiley is currently #7 on the all-time rushing leaders at Ohio State (but only 785 yards ahead of Beanie Wells, so we expect Wiley to slip down a spot around mid-season).
Wiley's biggest claim to fame? He's the only player in Ohio State history to take the opening kickoff of a SEASON all the way back for a touchdown.
So, Michael and Chimdi, enjoy your day!
Sunday, August 24, 2008
It's Cie Grant, #6 in the program, #1 in your heart.
Grant was always a strong defender, and he had a moment to remember in the Fiesta Bowl on January 3rd, 2003.
Facing 4th-and-goal in the second overtime, the Miami Hurricanes came to the line with three receivers. Add Kellen Winslow Jr into the mix (and the fact that star RB Willis McGahee was finished with a nasty injury), and you just knew this was a passing situation.
Cie Grant showed zone coverage, and then slipped to the line of scrimmage, blitzing past the Miami line just as the ball was snapped. Dorsey never had a chance, and his desperation toss to Winslow didn't get within 10 yards of him, and the Buckeyes won their first National Championship since 1968.
And if that moment wasn't enough to bring tears of joy to your eyes, there was this a week later, when Grant took the microphone at the ceremony to honor the Buckeyes;
Cie Grant, enjoy your day!
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Last year, there was a two-way tie for the championship between the aforementioned Tom and yours truly. I'm back this year to defend my title.
So with the season opener bearing down on us, I bring you my picks for Week 1 of the BTB Pick'Em contest;
- Syracuse vs Northwestern
- W Kentucky vs. Indiana
- Youngstown State vs. The Ohio State University
- Coastal Carolina vs Penn State
- Akron vs. Wisconsin
- Maine vs. Iowa
- Utah vs. Michigan
- Northern Illinois vs. Minnesota
- Michigan State vs. Cal
- Northwestern over Syracuse
- Indiana over Western Kentucky
- Ohio State over YSU
- Penn State over Coastal Carolina
- Wisconsin over Akron
- Iowa over Maine
- Utah over Michigan
- Minnesota over Northern Illinois
- Michigan State over Cal
- Illinois over Missouri
Northwestern over Syracuse
- Not many people give Northwestern their due. Despite being 10th in the Big Ten last year, they were almost bowl-bound, finishing at 6-6. I look for them to be improved this year and get to play in December. Syracuse? They suck.
Indiana over Western Kentucky
- The Hoosiers shocked a lot of teams last year and they have the most underpaid head coach in league history. QB Kellen Lewis is dying to explode on the field after some off-season problems. Western Kentucky is actually a good squad, and their RB is looking to have another 1,000-yard season. Unfortunately for WKU, he's all they've got this year.
Ohio State over YSU
- You don't really need me to explain, do you?
Penn State over Coastal Carolina
- The only stat in question is how many fans will post their own pre-game crimes on YouTube. I vote for three. But this game will give a LOT of opportunity for Penn State to answer the "pretender/contender" questions. I still think they are contenders.
Wisconsin over Akron
Akron has the 88th-best run defense in the NCAA. Wisconsin likes to run the ball (and may be their only offensive weapon this year until they find a QB good enough to carry Travis Beckum's jockstrap). Easy enough to predict the outcome of this game.
Iowa over Maine
- By the end of the season, Iowa might have more players in county lockup than they will in the stadium. But this is the first game of the year, and it's Maine. Look for a lot of pent-up frustrations to be released on the (whatever Maine's mascot is).
Utah over Michigan
- Really, would it be an upset if it happened? Not really. Utah is expected to have a ten-win season and Michigan still doesn't have their two-deep chart set up. The Utes had the 18th-best defense in the NCAA last year and they're looking for that breakout win to show the country they are for real. Michigan's been plagued by the injury bug the past few weeks and no matter how good RichRod was in WVA, there are no Slatons, Whites or Devines anywhere near Ann Arbor.
Northern Illinois over Minnesota
- Minnesota doesn't have much going for it, and second-year head coach Tim Brewster desperately needs something for his kids to build upon. Anything to build confidence in his team. A game against 2-10 NIU should do the trick.
Michigan State over Cal
- This should be one hell of a game. Big Ten vs. Pac-10, on prime-time TV. ABC's first big Saturday Night Game. Most years, it'd be a nasty scene for the visiting school, but I've got confidence in Mark Dantonio. He's gots himself a good football education (he was an assistant at Ohio State, nudge nudge wink wink). I'm calling the upset, which should help defray some of the anti-Big Ten screams
Illinois over Missouri
- A lot of the BTB is down on Illinois, thinking perhaps 2007 was a fluke year. That may be, but the Illini don't know it yet. I expect to see them fly high into Missouri and knock off what I think was an overrated Tiger squad last year. Plus, I really need them to be 10-0 when Ohio State visits them. I have tickets to sell to that game, and I'll get more money for them.
First up is Ted Ginn Jr. He once ran so fast down the field, that the earth began to reverse rotation. Warner Brothers Studios slapped an immediate Cease And Desist on him for violating copyright.
Now comes Chris Gamble, the man who could play 120 plays in a game and ask for more. He once shot a man just to watch him die.
Along comes Joey Galloway, one of the best receivers of his generation. On NFL Draft Day, HE called up teams and told them whether or not they could draft him. He also called Al Davis a pussy.
Joe Germaine, who led the 1998 team right down the field on the winning drive. It was later discovered that Germaine scored the final TD with 17 Arizona State defensive players on the field for the entire drive. Also, during the season, he allowed Stanley Jackson to co-QB, but only when he "grew tired of playing the game with you mere mortals".
Cornelius Greene, QB-extraordinaire from the early 70s. This photo was shot with a color camera, but Greene's speed was so intense that cameras could either decide to accept a blurry image or accept a black-and-white image. Nobody could explain it until Joe Germaine used his enormous brain to calculate the reasons why.
Greene went on to host "Soul Train" for 5 years, and he also gained a reputation as a private dick who's a sex machine to alllll the chicks. Damn right.
While writing this post, I had an epiphany.
All the great players who wore #7 at Ohio State have their last names begin with the letter G.
Therefore, God loves Ohio State and wants to wear #7 for us.
I report, you decide.
Friday, August 22, 2008
Pictured left, Hall scoring an early TD against Iowa from 2006.
Both teams were 4-0 heading into the game and there was a lot of concern among Buckeye fans about playing a Top 15 Iowa team on their home field at night.
Yeah, that didn't last long. Ohio State 38, Iowa 17. Lots and lots of sad faces in the crowd that night....here's a few;
BHGP is gonna be pissed.....
Thursday, August 21, 2008
I believe that a better look, coupled with the start of the season, will increase the amount of visitors and generally be a huge stepping stone for The BBC as we approach our second birthday. I have plenty of reason to believe this, and in fact our traffic is already increasing dramatically from last year's numbers.
August 2008 (which still has 10 days left in it) has the potential to be the highest-traffic month in the history of the BBC. It's in 5th place right now, rightfully so....Nov of '06 and '07 are the two tops, because the site really heats up during Michigan week, and the two months leading up to National Championships are also near the top.
I'd be pretty damn proud if The BBC's biggest month came in which most of the month was pre-season.
Incidentally, today marked the 100,000th page view that we've received since Day One. Not the biggest of milestones, but I'm happy.
There, have I talked enough to push the USC shirtless wonders below the fold? Phew.
Most of us who love college football enough to blog about it are guys. And most of us have been in the prototypical-yet-moronic "nuh, uh, YOU'RE gay" argument with other sports-loving guys. It's a rite of passage and we've all been there, except most of us don't actually give the other side EVIDENCE.
If you're a fan of USC, and you're reading this blog, please tell your favorite team to stop rolling around with other half-naked men. It's just making all of us snicker.
Here's the latest piece of evidence - USC starting wide receiver (note - not a tight end, snicker) Vidal Hazelton and his "friends" at a "party" recently;
Yes, there was lots of posing. LOTS of posing.
The only thing missing is....well, girls.
These curious pictures are just the latest in a serious of confusing details about the USC football program.
About a month ago, we were treated to a FAB-U-LOUS little video from a USC recruiting weekend. Take special note of the 50+-year-old men taking their shirts off with the 18-year-old boys so everyone could be a party to the FUN!
Then came the "he looks way too at-ease in those" photos of USC LB Rey Mataulaugugageaga;
This was followed shortly by a barely-mentioned story out of USC training camp that included guys placed on the injury list with.....ummmm, jock itch.
"It burns," receiver Travon Patterson said.Yeah, I bet it does.
Looking over all the evidence, this goes WAY past the "tee-hee Matt Leinart is SO ghey" territory. We're entering Pride Parade material now.