Tuesday, December 28

Buckeye Roundup

Happy holidays, sports fans! With the football team getting ready for the Sugar Bowl, All-Americans being announced, the basketball season gearing up for conference play, and an unfortunate off the field issue, we have a lot to discuss about Ohio St.


We have all heard by now and probably already discussed ad nauseum the situation regarding five OSU football players trading autographs for tattoos and selling awards and uniform equipment. The players at fault include star quarterback Terrelle Pryor, as well as leading rusher Dan Herron, #2 receiver DeVier Posey, All-Big Ten lineman Mike Adams, and defensive end Solomon Thomas. Now we could all argue until we are blue in the face about whether or not college players should be compensated for the absurd amounts of money that they make their programs, or whether or not what these players did should even be viewed as wrong considering they sold their own personal property, but I'm not going to get into all of that.

The fact of the matter is simple - NCAA athletes are not allowed to profit from what they do as collegiate athletes, period. There are two possible explanations for these players doing what they did. Either they are so unfathomably stupid and they didn't understand the rules, or they simply just don't give a shit. I'm inclined to believe the latter, although the former is probably pretty accurate as well.

Pryor and his teammates were punished by the NCAA, being suspended for five games...starting next season. Now it's time for me to go on a rant here. This is the biggest joke of a punishment ever. All five of these players should have been immediately thrown off of the team, no questions asked. But the N-C-double assholes (I can't believe I've been writing on this blog for years and that was my first Program quote) are so hypocritical and don't want to take the hit on the revenue they would be sure to lose had these players not been able to play in the Sugar Bowl.

The thing that really gets me is that in the cases of Reggie Bush and the fag five, among others, their programs were punished after these guys were gone and innocent players and coaches suffered the consequences (not that I'm shedding a tear for SC or michigan). Well here is a chance to actually punish the people who committed the violations while they are still in college. But no, the NCAA is saying "go ahead and play in the Bowl game, then turn pro and make millions."

Which brings me to my next point. Now, I've supported and cheered for TP for the past three seasons because "that's my quarterback, that's my teammate (sniffle, sniffle)." But let's call a spade a spade, here. Terrelle Pryor is a piece-of-shit, arrogant, punk. We all knew this coming in - most of us just chose to ignore it due to his superior talent. He has been the starting quarterback at a major college program for three years - if he doesn't "get it" by now, it's unlikely that he ever will. He has no concept of what it means to be a member of a team, he has very poor work ethic, he's lazy, and he's about as bright as a Steeler fan is clean.

It's nearly certain now that Pryor will opt to forgo his Senior season and enter the NFL draft, rather then sit out the first half of next season. Frankly, I think you were kidding yourself if you thought he was coming back even before this incident happened. Let's just hope he goes out with a bang and leads the Bucks to a Sugar Bowl victory. After that, sayonara.

Sugar Bowl

Now that we have that rant out of the way, this is what I really wanted to talk about. On January the fourth, Ohio St will take on Arkansas in the Allstate Sugar Bowl. At 10-2, the Razorbacks had an excellent season, finishing second in the loaded SEC. I thought the Buckeyes would have quieted many haters after easily handling Oregon in last year's Rose Bowl, but apparently I thought wrong. Still, all you hear about is how Ohio St "can't win the big game."

History is against the Bucks, as they are 0-9 all-time in Bowl games against SEC opponents, including two embarrassing losses to LSU and Florida in recent title games. Luckily for OSU, people don't seem to realize how irrelevant that stat is. What the 1953 Buckeyes did against Kentucky in the Tinker Toys Bowl has to do with the 2010 versions of Ohio St and Arkansas, I'm not sure.

The Hogs are led by one of the nation's top QB's, michigan transfer Ryan Mallett. While watching Arkansas play throughout the year, I was debating whether I should hate Mallett for ever attending that school up north, or applaud him for leaving that shit hole. I never really decided one way or the other. Arkansas doesn't run very often, but when they do, Knile Davis is always a threat to break one, averaging 6.6 yards per carrying and scoring 13 times on the year.

While the Razorbacks are very dangerous offensively, Ohio St should be able to put up points on their mediocre defense. If the Bucks' devastating defense can limit Mallett's big plays and force him into some poor decisions, which he often makes, I think we can finally break that meaningless 0 for 9 streak.

Prediction: Ohio St 34 Arkansas 24

All-Big Ten

Several Buckeyes were named to the All-Conference team, and I wanted to give them a quick shout-out. RB Dan Herron, WR Dane Sanzenbacher, OT Mike Adams, DL Cameron Heyward, LBs Brian Rolle and Ross Homan, and DBs Chimdi Chekwa and Jermale Hines all made first team, with C Mike Brewster and G Justin Boren receiving second team honors. K Devin Barclay, WR DeVier Posey, QB Terrelle Pryor, and DE John Simon all got honorable mention. Not surprisingly, the defense was well represented, making up half of the first team.

The Big Ten has always been known for its tough defensive players, but this squad looks even more impressive than usual. The front seven, made up of Iowa's Adrian Clayborn, Purdue's Ryan Kerrigan, Wisconsin's J.J. Watt, and Michigan St's Greg Jones, along with the three Buckeyes, is insane. Six of these guys could all be top 20 picks in this year's NFL draft (the exception being Brian Rolle, due to his size).

And a hats off to whoever the committee is that makes these selections for not just going by the media hype and actually giving the honor to those deserving. The best example of this is the QB spots going to Northwestern's Dan Persa and Wisconsin's Scott Tolzien, instead of the obvious choices of TP and Can't-Tie. It's a good thing Pryor didn't get it, as he just would have just sold it anyway.


Switching gears here, Ohio St has cruised through a relatively weak non-conference schedule to a 13-0 start as they prepare for Big Ten play, beginning with a trip to Indiana on New Year's Eve. OSU's latest victory came last night with a 100-40 beatdown of Tennessee-Martin. Certainly, UTM is far from a powerhouse, but a sixty point win is impressive, nonetheless.

Freshman Jared Sullinger has been an absolute beast, averaging 17.5 points and 10 boards thus far. The rest of the scoring has been very balanced, with David Lighty, William Buford, Jon Diebler, and DeShaun Thomas all averaging double (Deon) figures. And as has been the case for the past three years, Dallas Swat-erdale has been a monster on the defensive end, blocking three shots a game.

Even though Ohio St has only beaten three legitimate teams (Florida, Florida St, South Carolina) you can't help but be impressed with how they have played so far. Things will get much tougher in the loaded Big Ten Conference, but I don't expect a drop-off in production from these guys. Keep it up fellas.


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