The Week That Were: 09.21.13

Written September 23rd, 2013 by MaliBuckeye

Monday’s menagerie of thoughts and wonderings on Saturday’s shenanigans comes with music. It was an “ugly” weekend, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t make a silk purse out of it all.

Before we dive into the scores, it’s important to remember how trivial college athletics is in the big picture of things. Unfortunately, this is only brought home when we remember the frailty of life, and there were three chances for reflection this weekend.

Ohio State started with a tribute to Columbus Newscaster Dom Tiberi’s daughter Maria, who lost her life in a traffic accident this week.

UCLA followed suit later on Saturday with a 10 man play from scrimmage to honor wide receiver Nick Pasquale, who was killed in a traffic event last week.

And sadly, we found out on Sunday that Cincinnati freshman Ben Flick died after yet another motor vehicle incident.

Again, football is fun… but it ain’t life.

Mid-season Form

Mid-season Form

Let’s stay in the Buckeye State with a reminder of the awesomeness that Ohio State unleashed on Saturday. Sure, it was an undermatched opponent, but that doesn’t mean that the game was insignificant for those that played in it. And, while this was the best block of the week by FAR, the game was not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. Ohio State did allow ten runs and have two errors in the victory.

PS- I didn’t know that Pam Oliver was a Cal grad. At least TBDBITL seems to think so and responded to criticism in a different way than Charles did earlier.

Ken will be by later to respond to those pundits who seem to have issues with Ohio State’s 76 point victory, but I’ll add only this- I sure don’t hear any bitching about Baylor or Louisville or Miami doing the same on Saturday, and when Oregon did it earlier in the year against an FCS program, they jumped Ohio State in the polls.

You know who doesn’t have a problem with playing until the final gun? The Pirate Cap’n… that’s who.

As you can see up there in the right corner, Coach Kelly and the Irish are celebrating another win in the very friendly confines of South Bend. And by “very friendly”, I mean the kind of affectionate that allows a receiver to climb over the back of a defender and still benefit from the pass interference call. The “Sparty NO!” moment might have happened as soon as Michigan State left the locker room; it’s certainly an uphill battle when you’re playing 11 on 16. Read More

The Week That Were: 9.15.13

Written September 16th, 2013 by Scott

Where to start, where to start.

Alabama got revenge, Michigan almost got upset by Akron, Texas still can’t play defense and Nebraska, well, Bo Pelini better have his resume updated.

But we must start with the odd finish to the Wisconsin-Arizona State game in the wee hours of Sunday morning.

The Sun Devils led 32-30 in the waning moments. The Badgers had executed the 2-minute drive to near perfection and were in position to attempt a game-winning field goal.

Yawn, yawn. Sounds like a typical game. OK, here’s where it got weird.

Wisconsin quarterback Joel Stave did something that resembled a stumble, kneel down or plopping down of the ball.

Perhaps his knee touched, perhaps there was a whistle. Arizona State players saw a loose ball and hopped on it, and stayed on it.

The officials eventually decided it was still Wisconsin’s ball, but time ran out before the Badgers could get the field goal unit ready.

Game over.

Problem is, according to the rule book, the officials should have been flagged for illegal procedure because they gaffed big time.

Worse than Leon Lett in the Super Bowl. Worse than Ray Finkle and the laces facing the wrong way (thanks Marino). Worse than Marty Mornhinweg electing to kick after winning the OT coin toss.

According to an excerpt from rule 4-1-3-o “A live ball becomes dead and an official shall sound his whistle or declare it dead: When a ball carrier simulates placing his knee on the ground.”

Stave was attempting to take a knee. This much we know. So he was down and either ASU should have been hit with a delay of game or the crew should have stopped the clock to sort it all out.

Oops. Read More

Silver Bullet Points Fingers

Written September 12th, 2013 by MaliBuckeye

As you’re reading this, I’m prepping for the drive from Los Angeles to the Bay Area with the Mrs. for Saturday’s game. Given that we got engaged on the Marin Headlands, this song by one of her favorite performers is the obvious choice for this week’s soundtrack. Gonna’ warn you, though… this week’s reflection is… uh… verbose.

Waiting

Buckeye 411

  • Injury Update- The question that everyone’s been asking hasn’t yet been answered, as Coach Meyer said that Braxton threw a bit on Wednesday before leaving practice to get more treatment on his knee. Coach commented that the issue isn’t pain, but seems to be “stability”, and that Braxton is adjusting to his knee brace. It would not be surprising to see Kenny G start and be relieved by Miller, nor would it be a shock to have them split time at the position. Both will travel, Coach Meyer indicated that they would know more after Thursday’s practice and that he remained optimistic.
  • Two Thoughts- 1) The last time Braxton was held out of play in a game he returned to action and performed pretty well. 2) That being said, if Ohio State feels that they can win the game with Smooth Jazz and give Braxton a week (or two) to recover, I wholeheartedly support that decision. Long term goals here, peeps.
  • Also- Adolphus Washington did not practice on Wednesday, but is expected to travel. His is a bit of a different situation, as the injury is something that can linger. Also, as amazing as Washington is on the field, the Young Bucks are doing good work under Coach Vrable’s direction.
  • Good News- Corey Linsley is scheduled to play the entire game this week at center, having gotten the clearance to do so from the medical staff after his foot injury has significantly healed
  • Red, Not Scarlet- A couple of older “back ups” that many are surprised have not gotten the playing time they were expected to were discussed on Wednesday, and Coach Meyer said that it’s a possibility that Bri’onte Dunn and Michael Thomas may end up redshirting if they aren’t going to be a part of the planning this season. He also discussed how he felt that they were “wasted” by the coaches last year, and didn’t want to make the same mistake moving forward.
  • Getting Defensive- Ryan Shazier talked about the Silver Bullets’ excitement to play Cal, and that they were working diligently to ensure that the Bears didn’t have the success necessary to string together drives and run 100 plays a game. He also spoke about the need to maintain leverage on Cal’s running back Brendan Bigelow, as his ability to get to the edge is a strength that created issues for Oho State last year. However, Shazier mentioned that Bigelow’s talents were helped by a number of small mistakes that the young defense made last season.
  • Getting Ready- Playing the role of Bigelow this week in practice? Carlos “I’ll be back next week” Hyde. Not too shabby.
  • Stripes Lost- I guess we’re still doing that now, as Cameron Johnston, Tyquan Lewis, and Trey Johnson all had their black stripes removed today. Woot!
  • Honors- This week’s Sammy Silverman graphics, for your enjoyment Read More

The Week That Were: 8.31.13

Written September 2nd, 2013 by MaliBuckeye

For those unfamiliar with this feature, consider it your cheat sheet for the conversations around the grill on Labor Day. As always, these come with a melodic interlude to play gently in the background during your perusal… because you’re that important to me.

Haircolor Brought To You By Home Depot

It was the best of times, it was the… well… best of times. Football was played, plays were made, and the long summer doldrums finally came to an end.

Sawkaralyna got us started off in style, scoring on the third play of their first possession and kicking off the annual “Hey, we’re pretty good! Oh, that’s right… we have to play  in the same conference as Alabama/Georgia/Florida/LSU… nevermind.” The only significant storyline to come out of this game, other than the fact that sometimes “new school clothes” aren’t always fashionable, is the fact that ESPN’s love-fest for all things Clowney turned into the predictable hate-fest for the sophomore after he didn’t balance the budget/solve global warming/play like a Heisman candidate. Whatever helps them get their ratings points, right?

Speaking of firsts, the news this offseason was about the new “targeting” rule and it’s potential impact on the game.  Your future trivia answer to “who was the first college player to be ejected under this rule?’ is none other than Tulane’s Lorenzo Doss. Small Ohio State related fact that’s stuck in my brain for some reason- In 1995, the NCAA decided to crack down on “showboating” and OSU’s Terry Glenn was the first person flagged after signaling “First Down” following a catch against Boston College in the Kickoff Classic.  What a cute rule that was…

At any rate, the impact (see what I did there?) of the new rule was certainly felt across the first weekend; Northwestern had a game-winning drive extended after Cal’s best pass rusher was flagged for “targeting” on a tackle in the end zone, Texas A&M lost a player for a similar infraction (although, to be honest, it was a really bad call), and Oregon had to go and “one up them” (as always) with this potentially crippling hit against Nicholls State. To be fair to the defender, though, everyone in the stadium was yelling “Duck!” to the Nicholls QB. At least that’s what I think they meant…

Another major story this weekend was the debilitating sanctions that hit Heisman winner Johnny Manziel following the “autograph” scandal. I can’t imagine what it was like for him to sit there on the sidelines for that time, missing the change to be with his teammates and… yeah, in the time it took you to read this sentence, his “suspension” was over. I wish my car had a suspension that cushy…. Read More

Silver Bullet Points Treads Lightly

Written August 14th, 2013 by MaliBuckeye

Heisenberg’s words to Hank ring true for the remaining seven episodes, they also should sound as a warning for the rest of the B1G. There are still a lot of question marks on the Ohio State team as camp progresses… and if you don’t truly know who the Buckeyes are and what they are capable of, well…

(You know, at some point I’ll probably write an SBP without a Breaking Bad reference… but today ain’t that day. Here’s your soundtrack.)

You Were Warned

Buckeye 411

Silver Bullet Points Makes Memories

Written May 29th, 2013 by MaliBuckeye

Hopefully you’re either recovering from the long weekend or making plans for the next one… as an educational moment, though, be sure to know what you’re doing. As for me, I had a great weekend up above the treeline and enjoying some music that made me remember my college days… so, it’s also your soundtrack.

Memorial Day for the Buckeyes

Buckeye 411

As I studied the statistics from year #1 to year #2 at Meyer’s three previous colleges, I noticed that the rushing offense and scoring offense improved at all three programs.  Outside of those statistics, it’s hard to recognize any trends.

Good news for OSU fans… bad news for the B1G.

  • Sadder News- Former Ohio and Ohio State coach Tom Lichtenberg passed away on Sunday after a fight with cancer. He was 72. A coach under Earl Bruce, one tie he has to the current team is that one of his former graduate assistants is now the head coach. Thoughts and prayers to the Lichtenberg family.
  • Uniformity? Since we didn’t have any major bombshells this Memorial Day Weekend (thank God), it was good to see that Buckeye Nation was all atwitter about the possibility of going full Oregon this fall in terms of costume selection. We know for a fact that there will be a change in the uniforms this year (it’s been a while, and it’s a good time to capitalize on what’s sure to be an epic season by making new jerseys that will sell and make money for everyone but the players have the new staff put their mark on the program), but I’m hoping that we’ll get a little more Eddie and Orlando rather than Phil Knight’s other monstrosities.
  • Some Recruiting News- The Nation’s top quarterback put out his list, and Ohio State is in the final five; Kyle Allen has plans to make it to Columbus this summer. Also, this weekend is the Nike Elite 11 and NFTC Camps, so there will be a number of top tier athletes on campus. They won’t be able to meet with coaches while they are at camp, however… unless they set up unofficial visits, which is what #1 overall 2014 player DaShawn Hand and top 2015 recruit Tim Settle have elected to do. Stay tuned.
  • Troll Tide- Today, the SEC discussed the move to 9 conference games, a decision that would take away some of the cherished home games that SEC fans are packing the stadium to see. Alabama coach Nick Saban seems to be behind the idea, although in his comments regarding SEC strength of schedule was this fantastic gem:

How many (of the SEC’s top 6 programs) would Ohio St have beaten? Would they have won 3? I don’t know.

It’s always nice to know that someone is thinking of you, right?  Anywho, as you can imagine, the response was pretty interesting: Spencer Hall brought his usual crack-analysis (why the UC photo at the top, though?), while other voices brought a bit more reason into the discussion. At any rate, with Coach Meyer talking openly about the Tide and Saban having his mind on the doin’s up in Columbus… this is going to be a hell of a season.

  • “I Wanna Go Back To Ohio State, To Old Columbus Town…” Silverman’s work this week reminds us of yet another reason why: Read More

Silver Bullet Points Comes Out Of Its Shell

Written February 13th, 2013 by MaliBuckeye

No, it’s not time for the IlliBuck trophy again… Tuesday’s “news” was full of terrapin conversation, so we go where it leads. As such, here’s this morning’s soundtrack… I’m sure my folks will recognize it.

You want me to hang that WHERE?

Buckeye 411

  • Urban Legend- The world was a twitter yesterday with news that Urban Meyer had revealed that Woody Hayes once let a turtle bite him… well… you know. While I agree with Vico that it should have been immediately evident that the story was a playful fabrication, as it wasn’t weird enough, it should also be noted that Coach Meyer told the same story last year with Earle Bruce as the protagonist. Never the less, the Ohio State PR department decided that it would be wise to clarify that the story was merely a tall tale, lest the area’s extensive Testudines Advocacy Group (TAG) call down the thunder on the University.
  • Perhaps- That’s why the IlliBuck is a Woody?
  • Turtle Not Included- Thursday is a sacred commemoration for Buckeye Nation, as we celebrate St. Woodrow’s Day, which will be the 100th anniversary of his incarnation upon the earth. As part of the festivities, today the University will be unveiling a great statue of the man over at the WHAC, which is my only critique.  If other schools can have their statues by the field of battle, shouldn’t Woody’s be near his beloved and sacred Horseshoe as well? Perhaps some industrious student can make that happen.
  • Speak Loudly, And Carry A Winning Record- Last week, Coach Meyer made some comments about talking to the B1G Coaches about the conference’s recruiting and their national brand. Of course, the media and writers from other fanbases blew it out of context and presented it as “Urban going to tell the B1G how things should be done!” Well, come to find out, it was actually a well facilitated conversation that a number of coaches had already been a part of, and that a number of other reasoned folks agreed with. Interesting, that.
  • Oh, Mark May- Never change.
  • Vote Or Die- Seriously, I’m afraid John Simon will track me down, so I’ve cast my ballot numerous times already. Read More

The Curious Case Of Johnny Townsend

Written February 7th, 2013 by MaliBuckeye

What Once Was

Wednesday was a memorable day for Ohio State fans, as the program again finished National Letter of Intent Day with a class ranked in the top three in the nation, with some calling it the very best for the 2013 recruiting cycle.

It was a memorable day for Orlando’s Johnny Townsend as well, although for different reasons. What he expected to be a day of celebration for his achievements was put on hold; parties and press announcements held up for a bit as things sorted themselves out.

Townsend was supposed to be a part of Ohio State’s record setting class, but as of this article he has not yet submitted his signed letter of intent. In fact, as of late Wednesday night, rumors were swirling that he would join Florida’s 2013 class on Thursday.

The reasons for that are difficult to pin down. Early reports were that he was having second thoughts, or that Ohio State had rescinded the offer at the last minute. However, comments from his family indicated that this last possibility was not true, and that he instead had the paperwork for a full, four year tenure at Ohio State.

There was even speculation that he had decided to attend the University of Alabama, where he was offered the opportunity to gray-shirt prior to verballing to Coach Meyer; to be a part of the team at his own expense until a scholarship was made available for him, typically within a year. Again, at this point it seems that this report was also inaccurate.

What happened on Wednesday? And how does Townsend’s situation reflect an under-reported aspect of the recruiting process? Read More