Thursday, November 7

Buckeyes steamroll Purdue

While I’ll get to all of the fun parts of Ohio St’s 56-0 thumping of Purdue last Saturday in a moment, I’m going to start this piece by airing a grievance. Why is it that when Oregon beats a team by eight touchdowns, it’s because their offense is so invincible, but when the Buckeyes do it, it’s because the Big Ten sucks? There is just such a bias against the B1G that we can’t ever seem to win here. I’ll be the first to admit that our conference has not been its best in recent memory, and no, of course we haven’t been up to par with the SEC. But this double standard against Ohio St is starting to get ridiculous. You’re telling me that the Virginia’s and N.C. St’s that Florida St is beating up on or the Colorado’s and Cal’s of the Pac 12 are any better than the dregs of the Big Ten? Now again, don’t get me wrong, my rankings would have the Buckeyes at #4 as well - I just don’t understand the media’s viewpoint of things when OSU has these games and all they can talk about is how easy our schedule is but when teams from other conferences do it they just talk about how great they are. OK, rant complete, let’s get to the fun stuff.

Wow, Purdue isn’t very good. The Boilermakers set several records of ineptitude during their ass-whooping at the hands of Ohio St. The 56-point margin was the biggest in this series, and Purdue was shut out for the second consecutive game for the first time in 60 years. They also haven’t even reached the red zone in THREE games – that’s just astounding. On the Buckeyes side of things, it was just a stat-padding field day. Braxton Miller threw four touchdowns before giving way to Kenny Guiton, who scored three of his own. Carlos Hyde was over the century mark per usual, and five different Buckeyes caught a TD pass. Oh, and we outgained them in yardage 640-116.

Game Recap
Two plays and 57 seconds into the game, Ohio St was on the board, when Doran Grant stepped in front of a Danny Etling pass and took it to the house. I guess you could say Grant was hungry like the wolf on that play. Purdue quickly punted and the OSU offense scored on its second play, with Braxton hitting a wide-open Jeff Heuerman, who began his 116-yard career day with this 40-yard TD. The Boilers achieved a rare first down on their next series then punted right after, but the Buckeyes didn’t capitalize this time as Miller threw an INT.

It was less than a minute before the ball was back in Brax’s hands, and this time he came through. After another long Heuerman catch, it was the other tight end, Nick Vannett, who hauled in the eight-yard score. Purdue RB Brandon Cottom never got a hold of the handoff on the first play of their next drive, and Noah Spence was there (where wasn’t he in that first half?) to fall on the loose ball. With a short field, it again only took Miller two plays to reach the end zone, this two-yard score to Philly Brown being his most exciting and creative of the afternoon. He scrambled to the far side of the field, and I was just waiting for him to tuck it and run. So were the Purdue defenders, as they cheated in to flush Brax to the sideline. This left Brown open, and Miller, while facing the sideline mind you, threw a sideways shovel pass right into the breadbasket for a 28-0 Ohio St lead ,after a quarter of play.

The trend continued in the 2nd, with Purdue punting and Braxton driving down the field. This time it took a whole 11 plays to reach paydirt, and it was Kenny G in the Wildcat formation who threw the touchdown to Chris Fields. Two more Boilermaker punts sandwiched the Buckeyes’ lone three-and-out of the game, and Carlos Hyde broke one off for 42 yards when the Bucks got it back to set up Miller's fourth and final touchdown of the game. Freshman running back Ezekiel Elliott was on the receiving end this time, making a very good run-after-catch to complete the 10-yard score. The clock couldn’t hit zeros fast enough for Purdue, and most of their fans were gone when the half finally did come to a close with the score at 42-0.

Guiton was at the helm to begin the second half, but nothing changed. Another easy drive ended in another seven points, with Guiton rushing it in. Dontre Wilson got a couple of touches on this series and had a big 24-yard catch on a swing pass. As someone who has a weird obsession with shortening everyone’s first names to one-syllable nicknames, you have no idea how happy it makes me to have ‘Tre and ‘Zeke running the ball for us for the next three seasons.

I’ll give you one try to guess what Purdue did on its next possession. When OSU took over they moved it down to the Purdue 26 and were facing a 4th and 7. Ohio St went for it, which is the norm in football as kicking a field goal is seen as rubbing it in. I have always been confused by this notion. The Bucks attempted a pass on the down, and while it was incomplete, isn’t throwing and going for 7 rubbing it in more than kicking the FG? The only way I could understand this logic was if a team went for it and took a knee or did a QB sneak. I guess it will just always be one of those things that doesn’t make any sense to me but I just concede to the people who know way more about coaching football than I do, like going for two when up four late in the game or punting when you’re getting blown out.

Rod Smith and Kenny G did a lot of running in the 4th quarter, with Guiton crossing the goal line for the second time to cap the scoring at 56-0. Cardale Jones closed out another game, which is always fun so I can make a “playing football not playing school” joke.

Game Ball
Kenny motherfucking GGGGGG! While Braxton Miller (19/23, 233 yards, 4 TDs) may deserve this GB, my man-crush on Kenny G takes precedent. I had every intention of giving Guiton another game ball at some point this year just for holding PATs, so when he accounts for over 150 yards and three scores, it was really no contest. His jump pass to Fields was just awesome. But back to Braxton, he’s completing 72% of his passes this season. If he doesn’t miss those three games and pads his stats against those shitty teams, he is right there with Mariota, Manziel and Winston in the Heisman running. I can’t even fathom the potential of him coming back next season.
Game balls to date: Guiton (4), Miller (2), Hyde (2)

Big Ten
For really the first time all year, there were actually some other entertaining games to talk about. In the only irrelevant game, Minnesota outlasted Indiana in a 42-39 shootout that probably would have been very fun to watch had anyone actually watched it. Penn St beat Illinois in overtime in an exciting, back-and-forth battle. Wisconsin overcame a sluggish start to outscore Iowa 21-3 in the second half behind James White’s 150 rushing yards to win in Iowa City. On the brink of their first conference win, Northwestern was devastated by a Taylor Martinez hail mail in the final seconds to lose to Nebraska.

Then in the big one, Michigan St’s D proved legit as they straight dominated that school up north, 29-6. The Spartans dropped devin gardner seven times behind the line of scrimmage, leaving bitchigan with -48 total rushing yards. Yes, that is a negative sign in front of that number. I said a couple of weeks ago Ohio St’s best chance to impress voters would be if MSU ran the table in the conference and held a Top 10 ranking when we beat them in Indy.

Up Next: 11/16 @Illinois (3-5, 0-4), 12:00, ESPN/ESPN 2
As Ohio St enters their second bye week of the season, all eyes will be on Thursday night when two of the remaining power conference unbeatens face their toughest tests. Baylor will host Oklahoma, and while the Bears are a super long shot to jump an undefeated Buckeye squad, it can’t hurt to have fewer teams with a goose egg in the loss column. More importantly, Oregon travels to Stanford Stadium to take on the Cardinal. Stanford appears to be the only team capable of stopping this high-powered Duck offense, as they handed Marcus Mariota his only career loss last season when they upended Oregon 17-14 in Eugene. Ohio St’s title hopes rest on them doing that again. And then there's the showdown on Saturday in Tuscaloosa when #1 Alabama faces LSU, again, probably their toughest test of the season. The odds are certainly against it, but it's definitely not inconceivable to think that the Bucks could be ranked number two and in position to play for the Title by the next time they take the field.

On to the Buckeye game in two weeks - this should be another laugher. Illinois showed some fight against the Nittany Lions last week, but then again we beat PSU by 49. 10th-year senior Nathan Scheelhaase leads the Illini, who have put up some points this year but whose defense hasn’t been able to stop anybody (see: Sothern Illinois’s 34 points). Ohio St will continue to roll, we’re just going to need some outside help (C’MON STANFORD!!!)
Prediction: Ohio St 49 Illinois 20


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