Thursday, September 19

Defense stays in Columbus while Guiton lights up Cal

Ohio St extended its NCAA-leading winning streak to 15 games last Saturday as the Buckeye offense, led by senior QB Kenny Guiton in his first career start, torched the Cal Bears 52-34. OSU put up 21 points in the first six minutes of the game and never looked back. The defense looked shaky at its best and downright putrid for the most part and will surely need to be addressed before B1G play begins in 10 days with a trip to Madison. But I’ll let Urbs and his staff deal with that and for the time being let’s just bask in the glory that is Kenny G.

Game Recap
California received the opening kickoff and began with a three-and-out, but an illegal block in the back penalty on the return buried the Buckeyes back at their own six yard line. Kenny G was not worried. After a four-yard swing pass to Chris Fields, Guiton saw Devin Smith in one-on-one coverage and lofted one high and deep to let his playmaker get under it. That he did, and a few seconds later the longest play in Ohio St history was recorded and the Buckeyes were up 7-0. Another quick Bears punt gave the ball right back to Guiton, and he went right back to work. Dontre Wilson opened the drive with a 26-yarder to put the Bucks near midfield, and on the following play it was Guiton to Smith again for the score, making the duo 2/2 for 137 yards and two touchdowns…less than 3 ½ minutes into the game.

Keeping up with the early onslaught, Ryan Shazier sacked Cal freshman quarterback Jared Goff and forced a fumble recovered by Michael Bennett. Working with a short field, Kenny threw his third TD of the quarter, this time connecting with Fields on a 4th and Goal from the 1. Cal responded by showing that Ohio St wasn’t the only team that could strike quickly, scoring on a long pass play of their own to complete a 74-yard drive lasting all of 59 seconds. Before the quarter was even half over, the score stood at 21-7.

The teams traded turnovers on the next possessions, as Guiton’s fumble was immediately followed by Christian Bryant’s pick of Goff. A couple of big runs from Jordan Hall set up a Drew Basil FG, before Goff hit Chris Harper for another long TD pass and the explosive first frame finally came to an end with a 24-14 Buckeye lead.

Although both teams continued to play at an accelerated pace, the scoring slowed down in the 2nd quarter. Each team started off with drives resulting in punts before a marathon Buckeye drive lasting nearly FOUR whole minutes ended in a Hall 1-yard touchdown run. Not to be outdone, Berkley held onto the ball for even a few seconds longer, but had to settle for a field goal. After another Cameron Johnson punt, Cal kicked another FG in the closing seconds of the half to make it a reasonable 31-20 at the break.

The third quarter looked a lot like the first, with the Buckeyes scoring early and often and essentially putting the game away. Guiton had a 33-yard run on the opening drive of the half to set up Jordan Hall’s second short TD run. Three straight Goff incompletions quickly put the ball back in Kenny G’s hands, and the longest OSU drive of the game was capped with a Philly Brown touchdown grab. A good kick return set up the Bears and Goff tossed a score to Bryce Treggs to cut back into the lead. The deficit went right back up, however, when Hall crossed the goal line for the third time on the evening and the teams began the 4th with Ohio St comfortably ahead, 52-27.

As the final period was about to get underway, there was a distinctly audible “O-H-I-O” chant at Memorial Stadium. Taking a quick glance as the crowd, one could see plenty of Scarlet and conclude the Buckeye faithful traveled incredibly well, but this took it to a whole other level. If it wasn’t still light out there while 10:30 p.m. on the east, I would have sworn I was watching footage of The Horseshoe. As for game play, OSU was just grinding down the clock while California added a meaningless touchdown and the game went final at 52-34.

Game Ball
Like there is even an option. Jordan Hall’s 168 yards and three touchdowns may keep him on the field when Carlos Hyde returns this week, but this game belonged to one man – Kenny motherfucking G! The fifth-year senior made the most of his first career start, throwing for 276 yards and four scores, while rushing for another 92. Meyer was quick to praise Guiton’s ability to spread the ball around, completing passes to seven different receivers and finding no one more than three times. Even when Braxton returns I might just keep giving the GB to Kenny.
Game balls to date: Guiton (2)

Big Ten
It was not exactly a banner day for the conference Ohio St calls home. The Buckeyes were the only ones to get the better of the Pac 12 as Washington took down Illinois in Chicago, Arizona St escaped Wisconsin on a bizarre and kind of bullshit final seconds, and UCLA rattled off 38 (!!!) unanswered points to rout Nebraska. What are the chances Bo Pelini survives the year? Right now I’d say it’s not looking good for the former Buckeye. The Pac 12 weren’t the only teams to beat the Big Ten, as UCF ran all over Penn St and Notre Dame had to rally late to top Purdue.

But the biggest black eye for the conference came in a victory, as michigan barely avoided what would have been a hilariously devastating upset in the gay house to Akron. Leading for much of the second half, the Zips had a shot in the closing seconds to Appalachian St those assholes but failed four tries inside the 10 as time expired.

Heisman Watch

3. Marcus Mariota, QB Oregon
2. A.J. McCarron, QB Alabama
1. KENNY G!!!!!

You may say week three is too early for a Heisman list, I say they should just close the voting now and give the man what he’s earned.

Quick Hits
- This hurry up offense Ohio St is running is going to give B1G defenses fits. I don’t see anyone catching up with them.

- The wide receiver blocking downfield has been phenomenal this year. Brown has always been a solid blocker but Smith, who has been labeled as more of a ‘diva receiver’ in the past, is really getting his hands dirty as well.

- Hand stuff with Mila Kunis couldn’t have gotten me harder than hearing Gus Johnson yell “Touchdoooooooown…BUCKEYES” in his signature call time and time again.

- Rod Smith and Jordan Hall inexplicably switching numbers this offseason could not be more confusing. What’s up with this?

- Noah Spence is starting to look an awful lot like John Simon did last year, and while I mean that somewhat as a compliment I’m also referring to all of the times that Simon got through the line and in the quarterback’s face but just missed the sack. Spence had three or four near misses against Cal.

- I don’t like how Jared Goff and Cal were not scared of Bradley Roby. Usually you don’t see more than three passes go his way through an entire game, but Goff attacked him over and over and got the best of him on multiple occasions. I’ll chalk it up as an outlier for now, but will continue to monitor the situation.

Up Next: Florida A&M (1-2), 12:00, Big Ten Network
Other than having a kickass nickname (the Rattlers), Fla. A&M doesn’t bring much to the table as the Buckeyes will attempt to tune up for Wisconsin by obliterating their FCS opponent. There’s still no word on Braxton’s condition, but I would guess we will see him for 2-3 series’. Clearly Meyer won’t play him much and risk further injury, but I would think they would want him to throw a few live-action balls before visiting Camp Randall. The same goes for Carlos Hyde as he returns from his suspension. He’ll get some touches so he can take a few hits and get back into game-mode, but don’t expect to see many recognizable names in the second half.
Prediction: Ohio St 44 Florida A&M 0


No comments: