Tuesday, October 20

Five Turnovers Doom Ohio St

Terrelle Pryor looked the worst he's ever been, turning the ball over 4 times, in a 26-18 loss to Purdue last Saturday. Ohio St's offense continued to struggle, but unlike the week before against Wisconsin, the defense didn't do enough for OSU to escape with a win. It was an embarrassing loss to a bad team, that's all there is to it.

Game Recap

This game was immediately off to a bad start, when Pryor was sacked and fumbled on the second play. The OSU defense held, and Purdue was off to a quick 3-0 lead. Ohio St answered with a three-play drive, with Brandon Saine doing most of the work and Pryor finishing it off with a six-yard run. At this point it looked like the Buckeyes just spotted Purdue three points but were still going to roll along. That was not the case, however.

Ohio St could not move the ball at all the rest of the half, and Pryor fumbled for the second time midway through the second quarter. The Boilermakers had three decent drives later in the half, all resulting in Carson Wiggs FG attempts. Wiggs hit 2 of 3 and the Buckeyes went to the break down 9-7.

Joey Elliot marched Purdue right down the field to begin the second half, hitting Aaron Valentin for a 15 yard score, making it 16-7. Little did I know, we'd be seeing much more of Valentin later. Later in the quarter, Terrelle was picked off by Brandon King, giving Purdue good starting field position. Thankfully, we have a play-making defense of our own, and Devon Torrence answered with an interception. Not to be outdone, three plays later TP threw another pick, again to King. Couldn't he tell he played for Purdue? This time Elliot cashed in, throwing a 23 yard TD strike to, that's right, Aaron Valentin. Going into the final quarter, it's 23-7 Boilermakers.

Pryor led OSU on their first good drive of the game, but it stalled inside the Purdue ten, and needing three scores anyway, Tressel elected to go with the FG, cutting the deficit to 23-10. Instead of sitting on the ball, Elliot continued to throw and Wiggs connected on his fourth field goal of the game. DeVier Posey caught five passes on the next possession, including a 25 yard touchdown to keep OSU in the game. Let's make no mistake about it, Pryor threw a terrible ball up for grabs, and Posey was lucky enough to get under it. Pryor ran in the two point conversion, making it a one possession game.

The defense stepped up and forced a three-and-out, giving Pryor one last chance. He moved the ball into Purdue territory, but on a 4th and 14, he threw a pass to no one in particular that landed incomplete. Ohio St stuffed Purdue three more times, looking like they might get the ball back with about one minute to go. However, a stupid face mask penalty called on Doug Worthington gave Purdue a first down and ended the game, 26-18.

Game Notes

TP Struggles (Again)
Terrelle Pryor had the worst game of his collegiate career (and there have been some bad ones). He went 17/31 for 221 yards with 1 TD and 2 INTs. He also fumbled the ball twice. It's starting to get to the point where you have to think, maybe he's never going to get it. He obviously has unbelievable size, strength, and athleticism, and because of this he will make some great plays and look very talented at times. But by this time, I, like other fans and the coaching staff, expected him to start to mature and stop making these terrible mistakes. He is still only a sophomore, but he has had more starts under his belt than many seniors. It's time for Pryor to grow up, or shut up.

No Boom
This game showed that Ohio St really misses Dan Herron at the goal line. Two possessions for OSU stalled inside the Purdue 5 yard line because they had no one to run the ball right up the middle. They apparently didn't trust Saine to go between the tackles, so they're only option was a pitch out to him or a draw by Pryor. If I know this, you can bet your ass so does Purdue. The linebackers did a good job of not committing and containing TP and stopped the Bucks from crossing the goal line both times.

The Bigger Picture
Although this loss was hard to take because, well it's embarrassing, we don't get to break michigan's conference road winning streak, and it showed some flaws in our team, but looking in the grand scheme of things, postseason-wise, this loss really means nothing. The National Title was out when OSU lost to USC, and even with this loss the Buckeyes still control their own destiny to win the Big Ten and go to the Rose Bowl. If they do win out, they would most likely share the conference title instead of winning it outright, but oh well. It's time to move on and get back on track.

Up Next: vs. Minnesota, 12:00, ESPN
The Golden Gophers come to the Horseshoe sporting a 4-3 record (2-2 in the Big Ten). Minnesota looked bad in a shutout loss last week against Penn St, and certainly will be looking to get big play wideout Eric Decker back into the action. Minnesota is awful against the run, so hopefully Tressel can limit Pryor's mistakes by not giving him a chance to make them. Herron is expected to be back, so just let him and Saine run all day. Ohio St hasn't lost back-to-back conference games since 2004, and I don't expect them to here.
Prediction: Ohio St 28 Minnesota 13


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