April 30, 2005 8:30 pm EST
Jim Tressel went back to his roots to make what appears to be another outstanding hire in Tim Beckman, the Bowling Green DC, who will fill his final defensive coaching vacancy. As you know, Jim Tressel is from Berea, Ohio. Guess where Tim Beckman is from? Yep, Berea, Ohio. Jim Tressel, the family man that he is, chose a well rounded candidate in Beckman who has three children himself.
It is anticipated that Beckman will specialize in handling the defensive secondary (primarily cornerbacks) for Ohio State. This is no small matter: Beckman comes from a football family, was a varsity letterman himself at the University of Findlay, has substantial coaching experience including mentoring under Gary Blackney, Gregg Brandon and Urban Meyer.
Under his direction, the BGSU defense has consistently been outstanding, including near the top or leading the league in turnovers, and he is particularly known for being able to creatively assemble coverage patterns which give opposing QB's fits. In fact, some people believe that defending against spread offenses is how he rose to stardom as a coach. Beckman also has extensive recruiting experience and has acted as recruiting coordinator. Tim said to coach at Ohio State is a dream come true - gotta love that!
His father coached for the Cleveland Browns and the San Diego Chargers. Tim Beckman's father also played for someone named Lee Tressel at Baldwin Wallace.
Like I said, back to his roots goes Jim Tressel.
Friday, April 29, 2005, 8:31 PM (Eastern)
Although we are essentially about Buckeye football, we have started some coverage of OSU basketball under Thad Matta. A few weeks ago, Matta landed a haymaker of news in recruiting circles by receiving a commitment from Daequan Cook, the #1 rated player in Ohio and a top 5 player nationally. Cook was only offered scholarships from Cincinnati, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State, North Carolina (UNC), Syracuse and Wake Forest. Now, his friend David Lighty, the #2 rated player in Ohio and a top 20 nationally ranked player will commit to joining him at Ohio State next year.
Lighty is recovering from knee surgery, but is expected to be 100%. He is listed at 6'5", 185 lbs. and is expected to be a true "wing" player. I have seen film of him and he reminds me a lot of Mateen Cleaves, formerly from Michigan State. Lighty is extremely athletic with superior floor vision and can knock 3's down from NBA range.
As if this weren't enough, some experts quietly are expecting other commitments to Thad Matta that, if they materialize, could represent one of the strongest incoming recruiting classes for Ohio State next year EVER IN COLLEGE BASKETBALL. Other super-stars Matta is optimistic about landing include; Greg Oden (#1 ranked HS player nationally and projected to potentially be the #1 NBA draft choice in 2006), Mike Conley and Thaddeus Young.
For those who visit our Fan Forum regularly, I am on record saying (shortly after Thad Matta was hired) I expect Matta will take Ohio State to the Final Four within his first five years. At this rate, my prediction appears to be no longer valid - it will occur sooner!
Thursday, April 28, 2005, 11:01 PM (Eastern)
He just received the word today that his sixth year of eligibility will be granted by the NCAA. If you don't recognize him now, you will this fall. He is the one who will be filling the black hole left by the departing Mike Nugent. This is sixth year senior, Josh Huston. He is from Findlay, Ohio and is attending the prestigious Fisher School of Business at Ohio State majoring in marketing.
After redshirting his first year, he competed head-to-head with Mike Nugent during his redshirt freshman year, but was just barely edged out. Yes, he is THAT good.
Josh is both a kicker and punter, but will probably see mostly kicking duties this fall. He is known for exceptionally high punts and, like Mike, is both long and accurate on field goals. Now, before you wonder how he will be in game situations, he has kicked field goals against Indiana and Wisconsin while kicking off most of his redshirt freshman year in 2001.
This is bad new for opponents and good news for Buckeyes.
Tuesday April 26, 2005, 9:21 PM (Eastern)
JOE-S-U has an excellent analysis and some final thoughts on individual performances from last Saturday's Snow-Fest in the Horseshoe. For his report, click HERE.
Monday, April 25, 2005, 8:21 PM (Eastern)
There were only about 22,000+ at the game Saturday, and Gregg Watson was one of them. Here is a first look for those who couldn't make it. HERE
Sunday, April 24, 2005, 5:01 PM
It only LOOKED like Spring in this picture; it was actually winter(?). Wind-chill at kick off was 24 F degrees with the wind whipping at 10-20 mph. We all know that this was not even close to a real game, but we all pretend because we are so football-starved. The only thing we can take away from Saturday is how certain people performed. Let's see how my "watch list" fared:
- Kicker. Just as I feared - Mike Nugent has left the building! Huston may keep the fall-off from looking like freefall, but after that; OH BOY! Actually I think Skeete has potential but we are just about done living off the land of senior starters here.
- Punter. I think there will be some drop off, but not as much as I previously thought. AJ should do fine, but expect some youthful mistakes periodically.
- Offensive line. While not playing together since they were mixed up on each team, I think the line has definitely improved. I didn't watch too much of any one person, but was impressed with Steve Rehring on more than one occasion. Doug Datish seemed to have an up and down day.
- Defensive line. Again, not playing as a single unit makes it impossible to judge anything. I did think David Patterson and Vernon Gholston looked very good.
- Justin Zwick/Troy Smith/Todd Boeckman. I just don't know what to think here. Zwick didn't look good yesterday but not having a starting unit of first teamers around him could have made a difference. If I had to judge based upon just yesterday (which as I have said is NOT a way to judge), I would put Zwick at 3rd behind Troy Smith and Boeckman. Personally, I think Boeckman has some very high-end potential. Troy, was Troy, even in those conditions. He just simply gets it done!
- Antonio Pittman/Erick Haw. Personally, I let out a sigh of relief after the game that neither were hurt and both appear to be promising. Understandably, Haw is running very tentative at times but that will get better as he showed both power and speed Pittman? I love his vision and cutback ability.
- Albert Dukes. Some freshman mistakes, some flashes of brilliance. Most likely IS the real deal.
- Sirjo Welch. Still learning the position but is fun to watch. He will continue to improve but I can't see him starting this year unless others get injured.
- Alex Barrow. Didn't see a whole lot of him yesterday but I still think will be a force in the Fall.
- Donte Whitner. He should make us proud. He looks like he hates it when someone goes by him
- Marcel Frost. I didn't see a lot from the TE's yesterday. Remember, even Tressel said they really buttoned things up.
OTHERS OF INTEREST
- Linebackers. I feel MUCH better about our awesome foursome of Schlegel, Carpenter, Hawk and D'Andrea graduating at the end of this year. Curtis Terry, Chad Hoobler and Marcus Freeman are going to be household names. Freeman and Hoobler are extremely quick. Very impressive.
- Long snapper. Yes, it was cold and windy. Yes, my son Andy told me to be concerned about losing Kyle Andrews, our long snapper of many years. There appears to be a lot of work ahead here.
- Shaun Lane had a decent game and has made a lot of progress
Overall, not many surprises or disappointments. Hopefully, we can find a way to send film of this game to Texas for them to prepare for us! Now starts, the REALLY long wait until late July.
Thursday, April 21, 2005, 10:18 PM
With the Spring Game just two days away, I thought I would give my 2 cents on points of interest. Since it is really not a game per se, I personally think for fans it is much more about observing individual performances. This will include seeing progress from last year, new players, and those moving from a 2 or 3 spot to perhaps starting. With this in mind, here are some of the particular players I want to watch and why (in no particular order):
- Kicker. We have many key developments to watch, but none as crucial as replacing Mike Nugent. There is not just a void here, it's more like a black hole. Our choices are Huston, Skeete and Pretorius. Unfortunately, NOT household names
- Punter. We have been spoiled with Andy Groom, BJ Sanders and Kyle Turano. But look closer: all of these guys were seniors when they started. AJ Trapasso is the heir apparent but green as grass. SPECIAL TEAMS, SPECIAL TEAMS!
- Tedd Ginn. You are probably thinking, "He's already awesome, why is this of interest?" If you remember, when Teddy started last year it was mid-season and he was green also. I want to see what a year of study, practice, winter conditioning and watching video has done for him. It could only make a great thing even better, plus Teddy is on many pre-season Heisman watch lists.
- Offensive line. Last year, their grade for all games up to Purdue had to be "F." It seemed they got their sea-legs at Purdue and smoked against TBGUN and Oklahoma State. The question is very simple; have they actually become better, or where those games flukes? Personally, I think they improved that much, but that's why I want to watch them.
- Defensive line. Last year, they were just OK as they had to replace the last players from the 2002-2003 champion teams. This Spring, there have been rumblings that they have had their heads handed to them by the "new" offense. New DC Heacock has said publicly he is not happy with their play. The entire defense starts with them. If they are a problem, we might have to adjust our entire defense because the line was weak. Not a way to start the season.
- Justin Zwick. To start with, will the REAL Justin Zwick please stand up? I don't think we have seen what this young man can do yet. Why? Up until he was injured, he was playing behind an offensive line that couldn't contain Pee Wee leaguers. It was never published, but folks he took a serious pounding, had little time to set up and pass, and the entire offense was out of sync. John Elway would have looked bad. During the bowl game, he was heroic in injury but it was certainly not a reliable yardstick. Hence, back to my question of will the real Justin Zwick please stand up?
- Troy Smith. I want to see how a year of film study, winter conditioning, maturity and practice has affected him. I want to see him make better passes with a better touch. I hope what we did see of him last year was a great base upon which to build.
- Antonio Pittman. This guy showed some flashes of serious potential last year. However, the off-season was rough on him. He seems to be coming into the Spring Game with an improved attitude, work ethic and hopefully his head on straight. But remember what former Steeler coaching great Chuck Knoll said about potential; "Potential loses games."
- Erik Haw. Much-touted mystery man. This guy has been a secret almost as closely guarded as our stealth secrets. No one knows anything about him. Has not seen his first snap on the field. I saw him in the "Big 33" game last summer run over, around and through defenders. He is supposed to have terrific speed PLUS size. Both Erik and Antonio MUST be solid, as the only other TB will be incoming freshman Maurice Wells. No shortage of drama here.
- Albert Dukes. Not on the radar you say? Ask our defense about him. They are starting to talk in hushed tones of reverence about him. But, like Haw, he is completely unknown. With the upside potential he appears to have, I can't wait to see what he can bring.
- Alex Barrow. The inside word on him is that he is another Will Smith. When the offense was asked about him, they stammered and wanted to go on to the next question. That's enough for me.
- Sirjo Welch. Last year he was a terror on special teams. This spring when the offense was asked about him, they said he was able to run with Ginn. Again, that's all I need to hear.
- Donte Whitner. While no surprise, he apparently likes to emulate Michael Doss with big hits. You have to love it!
- Marcel Frost. When he committed to Ohio State, people thought we were getting the equivalent of Kellen Winslow Jr. athletically. Now healthy, he has had a great Spring. The coaches also indicate they want to involve the TE more.
- Curtis Terry. This was a young man that came in without a lot of fanfare but excited the coaches a lot. The word is he also has had a great Spring. Why the interest? In case you haven't noticed, we lose our ENTIRE starting linebacking corp at the end of this year. Enough said.
There are going to be many interesting other players to watch and I don't want to slight anyone. These are just some of the more interesting developments that I think could mean a lot for this Fall.
The Spring Game will be broadcast on ONN (Ohio News Network) and CSTV, 1460AM THEFAN radio. Since I live in Columbus, I will as always, be at the game.
Wednesday, April 20, 2005, 12:01 PM
Time to cast your vote for who you think should be our captains this fall. There are a number of juniors on our list mainly because of a smaller number of starting seniors. LINK.
Tuesday, April 19, 2005, 10:25 AM
To true Buckeyes, this photo should make you sick to your stomach. Why? If for no other reason than it is a photo of The Bad Guys. So? The front page of the Sports section of today's Columbus Dispatch newspaper features a huge story about Braylon Edwards, along with a color photo that measures just over 6x9 inches of him catching a ball in his home uniform. The story, written by someone named James Walker, is titled, "Slow Start Pays Off." It is a classic rags-to-fame story. The combined story and picture take up approximately 2/3 of the entire front page of the Sports Section. Below this story is a much smaller photo and story about OSU long-snapper Kyle Andrews.
Am I missing something here?
A feature story about a star for TBGUN in our paper seems to be akin to the Democratic National Party giving Rush Limbaugh a life-time achievement award. It's also not like Edwards was an Ohio boy that temporarily lost his way and ended up in the land of the ugly-helmets - he went to high school in Detroit!
There is passing reference to him possibly being drafted by the Cleveland Browns, which may have given rise to this story. However, it is NOT a story about all of the potential Brown's draft picks, so this make little sense. Personally, I like Tim May and many of his articles (even though he did not do this piece) but this makes zero sense to my little Scarlet & Gray mind. Then again, the Columbus Dispatch periodically does what seems to me to be very weird stuff (much like this). Weren't these the same guys who also "broke" that landmark, journalistic "breakthrough" story about Jim Bollman having that "terrible" reprimand in his otherwise "private" personnel jacket? You know, the one the entire sports world has been talking about ever since? A story which was later that same day "further qualified" as having been taken out of context? Now, that meant what to OSU and the fans, again?
I asked for and am still awaiting the Dispatch voluntarily publishing their own personnel files and salaries, similarly to how they saw fit to disclose similar information about Tressel and Bollman. I'll hold my breath while the "weirdness" continues!?
Monday, April 18, 2005, 11:55 AM
We have an assorted list of observations from Sunday's Jersey Scrimmage. To start with, the offense we saw most last year has been run out of town for good.
- Super-charged is about the only way to describe the offense. WAYYYY too many weapons and each one can produce
- The offensive line is already being touted as a strength of the team. Performing well were Barton, Mangold and Datish
- Zwick had a great day - some observers said he was the best, but with a fine line
- Albert Dukes really turned heads - our defense said they did not enjoy going up against him
- Haw and Pittman BOTH looked good. Haw showed power and quickness while Pittman showed he added strength over the winter and a renewed commitment - what a relief, huh?
- Donte Whitner brought the wood on more than one play
- Ginn was, well, Teddy. What can you say?
- On defense, Chad Hoobler had a good winter and played very well in the middle
- Nate Salley and Bobby Carpenter also had big hits
More later, but the offense, under the goofy scoring system, racked up 93 points. All three QB's looked good. The defense was confused the whole game and gave the offense respect publicly.
Friday, April 15, 2005, 10:17 AM
JOE-S-U has a short tribute and commentary following Andy's last day of serving the Buckeye nation. HERE
Wed, April 13, 2005, 8:27 PM
Finally, some information from our covert operatives! What's new? Click HERE to read the operatives' latest report.
Sunday, April 10, 2005, 8:37 PM
You wouldn't think as many competitive juices flow in the winter/spring as in the fall, but they do for us, and they do for TBGUN (The Bad Guys Up North). After a tremendously intense time of being scrutinized by Lloyd Carr, our infamous HAVEBLUE operatives will be resuming transmission of reports from The Dark Side. Our newest report should hit sometime this week and word is the operatives have some VERY interesting information to pass along.
We will also be updating progress of spring practice this week, as we continue the march to the Scarlet & Gray game on April 23, 2005.
Wednesday, April 6, 2005, 7:25 PM
Just when you thought all of the national media had finally and totally turned against us, BAM!, we get surprised. We knew TG was Heisman material, but wondered if anyone else did too. Well, yesterday Sports Illustrated came out with this article. LINK. He hasn't made the cover (yet), so we can't think about the SI Jinx. Cool article, actually saying something good about us!!!
Ahhhhhh. I guess order may be restored to the universe, and good win-out over bad after all!(?)
Monday, April 4, 2005, 7:05 PM
The newest Buckeye 50 YardLine poll question is now available. Click HERE for the link. HINT: Just how bad is YOUR Buckeye fever problem?
Saturday, April 2, 2:45 PM
We have caught up on the daily links that should bring you up to date on your spring football fix if you are a little behind. Click here to go to the links.
Saturday, April 2, 2005, 1:30 PM
Spring ball is underway and it's time to get excited. Why? Click here for the answer. The 2005 depth chart has been updated to reflect injuries and the latest depth as far as we can tell. Later this afternoon, we will have a list of links with a variety of spring updates to get caught up if you are behind.
Friday, April 1, 2005, 3:20 PM
In what can only be described as a bitterly disappointing day for our reporting team, we have just learned that Maurice himself decided to re-think his position and will not be in attendance at his own, self-called press conference. This has left university officials red-faced, once again. Our source said he felt like, "Charlie Brown trying to kick the football being held by Lucy, just one last time." He went on to say that he feels this may be the last straw for Maurice.
Buckeye 50 YardLine officials have tried to reach the NCAA, as well as Jim Brown. Neither were available for comment. Officials at his high school however said they saw him running wind-sprints by himself indoors. Speaking on condition of anonymity, a former teacher did say they informed Maurice earlier today that, "Those moody people from the NFL left sometime yesterday."
The final conclusion we are left with is to advise everyone that this has been a good-natured attempt for an April Fool's Day prank, courtesy of your friends here at the Buckeye 50 YardLine. I feel everyone needs to be able to laugh and enjoy life. While controversial at Ohio State, Maurice contributed greatly to our 2002 Championship year. I personally hope he can get in the groove of making better decisions, as life is short and we don't always get second and third chances.
FYI - the 2005 Depth Chart is now updated for Spring Practice. Enjoy the rest of your day!
Friday, April 1, 2005, 2:53 PM
The much awaited press conference has been delayed until 4:45 PM, EST. We will provide coverage as quickly as possible.
Friday, March 32, 2005, 8:17 AM
The Buckeye 50 YardLine learned late last night from the highest levels of the university (confirmed this morning) that former running back Maurice Clarett will return to OSU full time as a student athlete and rejoin the team with the incoming freshman class this Fall.
According to our source, this deal has been in the works behind the scenes for over eight months, and has been a closely guarded secret by all involved. Apparently, Clarett and his attorney negotiated privately with the NCAA, then Ohio State. All of the terms of this totally unprecedented action were not revealed, however we did learn that Clarett said he had wanted to return to OSU ever since his lawsuits against the NFL all failed, realizing the magnitude of his mistakes at that point. Our source indicated the NCAA and Ohio State will “recognize” him this fall as a sophomore. Further details later today around noon, when it will be officially announced.
Thursday, March 31, 7:40 PM
It's Wednesday morning, and your boss tells you that he needs you in (pick a place ______) and your business will not finish up until late Saturday morning. You can return anytime after that, but being the devout fan you are, you MUST catch the game live. Quick: where do you go?
This question was actually posed to me today by one of my sons, and I realized I had no answer. Actually, I would NEVER be out of town for a home game, but what if I couldn't get home in time to watch an away game? The next best thing would be to watch the game with fellow Buckeyes. We ARE everywhere, you know.
We want to create a link for all travelers worldwide, as well as those who live outside of Columbus, of great places (restaurants, bars, halls, etc.) to watch the game with fellow Buckeyes. Due to limitations on storage of the Buckeye 50 YardLine current e-mail servers, please send your responses to the following e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org . I will start posting them this weekend. Please make sure you know for a fact that the locations you provide are known and reliable places where Buckeyes reliably gather for the games.
This should be very interesting.
Tuesday, March 29, 7:50 AM
The winter doldrums are about to end, both weather-wise and football-wise. Spring practice starts officially this Thursday (3/31/2005), culminating in the Spring Game on April 23 in Ohio Stadium. Tickets to the Spring game are $5.00 each and open to the public. They can be purchased at the Athletics Ticket Office in the Jerome Schottenstein Center. The game will also be telecast live in Columbus by WBNS-TV (Channel 10) and carried around the state on ONN. CSTV will carry the game nationally on a delayed basis. WBNS Radio (1460 AM) also will broadcast the game. Out of town fans should be able to hear the game via the Internet from 1460 THE FAN radio (WBNS radio).
We will have more on the drama, the replacements and the key areas of concern in the next few days.
Sunday, March 27, 9:00 PM
First the Easter Bunny, then the basketball playoffs, and NOW, JOE-S-U! This is almost too much to handle in one day.
JOE-S-U has some very interesting insite on the upcoming season and the Heisman trophy with his editorial entitled, "Heisman Highs & Lows." Click on the "Editorials" link in the left column for the article.
Also, we have a preview photo from Watson Photography showing a classic pose from last years's GAME.
Thursday, March 24, 9:30 PM
The athletic department released a depth chart for spring practice today, although it still looks a little dated. This link will take you to the spring overview which will include a link to the spring depth chart. We have also updated our own depth chart, which takes into account injuries and some projected position changes that we feel will be in effect come the start of spring drills.
Buckeye Meat and Potatoes:
--As expected, Donte Whitner is penciled in to get the first shot at replacing Dustin Fox as the boundary cornerback. I was at a charity event a few weeks ago, an event that Whitner and most of the other 2005 Buckeye football players attended. I couldn't figure out what he was talking about at the time, but Whitner said that he would be playing corner in the spring, but playing his customary safety position in the fall. He then stated that Tyler (Everett) would be playing corner in the fall. Well, it turns out that Everett will miss the spring recovering from minor knee surgery. It makes a little more sense to me now, but I can't imagine that the coaches would play Whitner at cornerback in the spring unless they feel he is capable of handling the job full-time, opposite Ashton Youboty. But it has been said that Whitner is not thrilled with the idea of playing corner. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.
--Tight End Marcel Frost is not listed in the depth chart, although the chart goes at least three-deep at most positions. This could be because the depth chart is indeed dated. Frost had some injuries last year and it has been somewhat hush-hush as to his health status since then. Frost was at the charity event that I attended, so he is still with the team. If Frost is healthy, some think he could get a look at DE again, if the coaches feel they need more bodies there. However, everyone raved about Frost at TE in practice last year before he got hurt.
--Other injuries - Mike D'Andrea will be held out of spring drills as he recovers from knee surgery. D'Andrea expected to be full-go in August. John Kerr, Brandon Underwood and Mike Kudla will participate in spring drills but may be held out of contact drills because of medical restrictions. When Kerr does play, he may get looks at both MLB and WLB.
--Doug Datish is listed as the #1 RG on the depth chart released today, but there is a good amount of talk that says Kyle Mitchum and Ben Person will stage a battle (possibly with Datish) for a starting job.
--Noticeable absences from the depth chart - EJ Underwood, Albert Dukes and Brandon Maupin.
--It looks like Anthony Schlegel will play in the spring and will be unrestricted. Schlegel has recovered quickly from off-season knee surgery. Chad Hoobler will likely start the spring playing with the two's.
Thursday, March 24, 1:15 PM
Here is one of Gregg Watson's OSU football 'Visuals'. Gregg's visual works include virtually ALL things related to OSU football. Anything that goes with Game-Day, is a fair subject for his works. We are working on a temporary way for you to see and purchase Gregg's work until we can get a fully integrated Photo Shopping Facility in place. Let us know what you think!
Wednesday, March 23, 7:45 AM
You may remember that we recently added two new people to our staff; JOE-S-U and Gregg Watson (Watson Photography). JOE-S-U's first article has been published. However, coming soon to the Buckeye 50 YardLine will be the photographic works of Gregg Watson. Gregg's "hobby" is OSU football photography. We will soon be carrying his work exclusively. You will be able to view and order his work right here from the Buckeye 50 YardLine. We will have a few samples up in a day or two, with hopefully much more to choose from in a few weeks.
Also, Gregg was able to confirm for me that the Penn State game this year (@ Happy Valley) will be a night game. "Penn State-Ohio State Clash Set for Primetime Kickoff on ESPN/ESPN2 STATE COLLEGE, Pa., March 23, 2005 - ESPN will nationally televise the gridiron clash between Penn State and Ohio State in primetime, marking the first time the border rivals have played each other at night.
The Buckeyes will visit Beaver Stadium on October 8. The contest will begin at either 7:00 p.m. and air on ESPN2 or 7:45 p.m. and air on ESPN. A determination on the kick time may not be made until 12 days prior to the contest."
Monday, March 21, 7:45 PM
Time for Another Run?
Well, spring is here and Coach Tressel and some of the players don’t seem to be shy in regards to their expectations. National Title run? Seems like Tressel and the boys think it is a distinct possibility. Why? Let’s take a look….
- The offense that sputtered through the first half of last season is now very dangerous. Average quarterback play with a little protection from the guys in the trenches should allow Teddy, Santonio, and Gonzo to make life very difficult for even the top defenses. If someone figures out a way to stop Ted Ginn, then I will assume that person has also figured out a way to defy physics. Ginn scored at least once in five of the last six games last year, and it is going to be hard for any team to keep him out of the end zone in any game this year.
- This team has experience at QB, unlike the team heading into last year. Troy Smith showed everyone his multidimensional skills against the school up north last year and Justin Zwick showed the heart of a lion in the Alamo Bowl. You would have to think that one of these two, if not both of them, would be able to effectively lead this talented offense.
- For the first time in a number of years, the offensive line has some depth and looks like one of the best units in the league. Four of the five starters from last year’s Alamo Bowl return, with the fifth projected starter, Doug Datish, a player that started 10 games last year. Guard TJ Downing and right tackle Kirk Barton are both looking like diamonds in the rough. Center Nick Mangold could challenge for All-American honors. 2nd year players, Steve Rehring, Kyle Mitchum and Ben Person will push the starters. And, the most highly touted incoming O-lineman in years, Alex Boone, arrives in August.
- The D-line returns seven out the eight guys from last year’s two-deep. Quinn Pitcock will be a pre-season All-American. The coaches think Jay Richardson could be the next big-time pass rusher at Ohio State. Youngsters Vernon Gholston and Alex Barrow are names you will here about a lot in the next few years.
- One day people will look back at a group of LB’s whose names include: AJ Hawk, Bobby Carpenter, Anthony Schlegel, Mike D’Andrea, Marcus Freeman, John Kerr, Chad Hoobler, Curtis Terry and Freddie Lenix and say, “There is no way a team had all those guys on the same roster.” Hawk is already being called the clear-cut favorite to win the Butkis Award. Outside of Big Ten country, Carpenter is the best kept secret in the country. Now add the tandem of Schlegel and MDA in the middle and you have to wonder how Coach Fickell is going to keep the rest of the bunch happy.
- As always, the defensive backfield will be loaded. Ashton Youboty may take over the reigns as the top cover-corner in the Big Ten. Nate Salley, Donte Whitner and Tyler Everett are the likely other three starters for a unit that has to be considered one of the best in the league.
- Make no mistake about it; last year’s blowout wins over Michigan and Oklahoma State to finish the year were both even bigger blowouts than the final scores indicated. Ohio State gave up two early scores to a 9-1 Michigan team and then ransacked them. Oklahoma State was dominated in every phase of the game by an Ohio State team that was basically playing without a quarterback. 33-7? It could have very easily been 50-0. The offensive line jelled just in time to salvage a mediocre season and a defense that was maligned early in the year was playing as well as any defense in the land before it was all said and done.
Hope spring eternal…it’s time to get excited.
Sunday, March 20, 9:45 PM
Buckeye Meat and Potatoes
--Linebacker Marcus Freeman has changed his number to #1.
--When asked recently if he would be playing in the spring, Anthony Schlegel replied, "Yes", but then added, "...if I have any say in the matter." Sounds to me like the coaches may make Anthony sit out this spring as he recovers from off-season surgery. Mike D'Andrea may be held out of spring drills for precautionary reasons as well. If this happens, look for John Kerr and Chad Hobbler to share time with the one's at the MLB spot this spring.
--Donte Whitner and Tyler Everett may be auditioning for the boundary cornerback spot opposite Ashton Youboty (although Donte is thought to like safety much better than corner). So, as of right now, it looks like both are starters - one at cornerback and one at strong safety. But, there is a lot of football to be played between now and September 3rd's opener against Miami (OH). Look for Jamario O'Neal to throw his hat in the mix at corner when he arrives (assuming he passes admissions which is not yet a certainty). Teddy Ballgame may throw his hat into the mix as well, although it is more likely that the coaches mix Teddy in at cornerback slowly during the season and never play Ginn full time on defense.
--Four of the five O-line positions look to be pretty much set for now, with Rob Sims at LT, Nick Mangold at C, Kirk Barton at RT and T.J. Downing at RG or LG. The other guard spot could be a battle between two talented redshirts, Kyle Mitchum and Ben Person. Also, Steve Rehring could play a good deal at LT, pushing Sims to LG, as he did last year. If Doug Datish were to progress, he could earn some time at center, sliding Mangold to one of the guard spots. (Mangold was recently timed at 4.96...pretty fast for any O-lineman.) However it plays out, this appears to be the deepest and most talented Ohio State line in recent memory.
--It has all but been 100% confirmed that Roy Hall has moved to TE.
--It is still not a 100% certainty that Troy Smith will sit out the opener, although that still appears to be the most likely scenario.
--Most of the recent talk says that E.J. Underwood and Brandon Maupin will not be returning. It is up in the air as to whether or not Albert Dukes returns.
--Recent recruiting news is very good in terms of Ohio State's chances for Pickerington blue chip offensive lineman Justin Boren. Boren is calling Ohio State his clear leader, despite the fact that his old man played linebacker at TSUN in the early 80's. Ohio State could sweep the "Big 3" O-linemen from Ohio; they lead for Boren, Aaron Brown and Conner Smith. OSU offered these three O-linemen early in the process, an unusual move by the Ohio State coaching staff. They obviously are very high on these three kids.
--There has been some talk that Erik Haw has struggled to stay eligible, but as of now, it looks like Haw is making the grade and the word is, he is turning some heads. Look for Haw to take the #1 TB job this spring, assuming he continues to keep his grades up. Antonio Pittman may still be in the coaches' dog house.
--Sounds like it could be 50/50 whether or not Marshall hires Ohio State defensive coordinator Mark Snyder as their head coach. If they do, the #1 candidate to replace Snyder may be ex-OSU assistant Gary Blackney. Another name that is being thrown around a lot is ex-OSU LB Thomas "Pepper" Johnson. A couple of other ex-Buckeyes, Bo Pellini and Tim Walton are being mentioned as potential targets as well. BUT....it is still not a certainty that Marshall offers Mark Snyder the head coaching position. If they do offer, the word is Snyder will jump on it.
--Are you a big-time OSU football fan and a casual OSU basketball fan? If so, you may not know these names yet. The Buckeyes will add these three players in '05-'06: Brayden Bell, Utah, Center, 6-9, 240 - terrific shooter for a big man; Sylvester Mayes, JUCO, Shooting Guard, 6-2, 195 - unanimous league MVP, 20.3 ppg; Ronald Lewis, BG Transfer, Guard, 6-4 - averaged 17.0 ppg as a soph, shooting .810 % from the line and averaging almost 5 rb’s per game. Things look very promising for Thad Matta's Buckeyes next year.
Sunday, March 20, 2005 12:59 PM
We all knew it was bound to happen. And today is one of those days. A day that during football season we all knew would happen, but dismissed it quickly because we were having too much fun in the Fall to think about it then.
What kind of day? A day where absolutely NOTHING OSU football related is going on, as well as no college football news. So I thought this would be a good opportunity to start familiarizing everyone with certain features of our new site you may not have found yet.
Today, I want to highlight an area on the bottom left of the scarlet column named, 'Famous Links'. This section is the beginning of an area that we will collect clips of audio, video or multi-media that represent great moments is OSU football history. THIS SECTION IS CLEARLY NOT COMPLETE YET.
The first link is titled. "Holy Buckeye." It probably needs no explanation, but it is the famous 4th down play against Purdue in 2002 - one of MANY plays that season where fate was on the line, again.
It was very late in the game and Ohio State was trailing 6-3. We were undefeated in the season, and ranked #3 in the country. Tressel decided to go for it. OSU lined up..., well....., see for yourself here. Truly, one of the single most stunning moments in OSU football history. You will need Apple Quicktime to see this, which you can download for free from our download link bottom left. It is a little slow loading and not that long in duration, but VERY worth the time. ENJOY!
Tuesday, March 15, 2005 2:12 PM
Within the past couple of weeks, the Big Ten announced the conference portion of the 2007 and 2008 football schedules. Unless I missed it in the paper, I've checked the Big 10's website and several others and haven't found a complete listing anywhere. In checking the school sites, I've
pieced together partial schedules..
2007- The Bucks will travel to Washington to face the Huskies on September 15th. There's no game listed for 2008 so I'm guessing this is the return game for the August night game here in '03. The only Big 10 games I've found so far for '07 have us at Penn State Oct. 27th, home vs. Wisconsin Nov. 3rd and at Michigan Nov. 17th. What a stretch run!
2008- Looks like everyone will be back to a 12-game schedule this season. The Bucks go to Wisconsin on Oct. 4, host Penn State on Oct. 25th and host Michigan on Nov. 22nd.
As some of you may have heard, our feathered friends at Iowa do not play us OR Michigan in '07 and '08. Kind of reminiscent of when Joe Pa came into the Big 10 and got bye weeks before playing us and Michigan for his first two years, not to mention us having to go up to Happy Valley two years in a row which was never reciprocated. Someone at the Big 10 office must love
Kirk Ferentz. Or it could be ESPN who's still ticked that we didn't play Iowa in 2002. But I'm sure Iowa's schedule was randomly done by computer. Yeah, more famous last words!
Monday, March 14, 2005 10:32 PM
We have made a slight modification to the home page. The column on the right is now underneath the original column to the left. We will be additionally modifying both columns on the left for a more efficient look via consolidation of links. The whole purpose of this is to allow for more print area as we anticipate more updates, more frequently.
Sunday, March 13, 2005 8:32 PM
We mentioned a while back that we would be bringing on additional Buckeye 50 Fifty Yard Line staff members. I am very proud to introduce our newest team members; Gregg Watson and Joe Hylton.
Gregg Watson is a graduate of Ohio State and lives here in Columbus, Ohio. In addition to having a full-time professional position, he also has a private photography business, 'Watson Photography.' Beginning April 1, 2005, The Buckeye 50 Yard Line will be the exclusive dealer for all of Gregg's excellent OSU-related photography. In addition, Gregg will be a regular contributing columnist providing game coverage, and analysis. Welcome Gregg - a true Buckeye in every sense!
Then there's Joe. I think Joe is going to be a character and a lot for us to handle (all in a good way). His nickname given to him by co-workers, which is what he will go by here on the Buckeye 50 Yard Line is, "JOE-S-U". In Joe's own words, here's why:
"Hello fellow Buckeye fans!
My name is Joe Hylton (pronounced like Paris but I don't claim to be related) and I'll be a new "voice", if you will, here at "Buckeye 50". Periodically I'll be commenting on the upcoming 2005 season as well as looking back at the illustrious history of Ohio State football. I'm thrilled to get this opportunity and sincerely hope you'll enjoy our coverage of the Bucks.
I am a graduate of Ohio State (Class of 1990), and during my days as a student I experienced some of the high times (the Iowa game of '85, the LSU and Minnesota comebacks) and dark days (4 losses in 5 years to Michigan, the firing of Earle Bruce) in OSU annals. Actually the first game I ever attended at the 'Shoe had been in 1982 when John Elway took Stanford 80 yards in a little over a minute to knock the Buckeyes off. I figured after that things could only get better...
Ohio State football has been a lifelong love affair. If any of you are regular listeners to 1460 The Fan in Columbus, you may remember last summer they had a contest called the BFAT (Buckeye Football Aptitude Test). Registered listeners got to take a 100-question test about Ohio State football with the winner receiving season tickets to the 'Shoe for 2004. I was fortunate enough to win the contest, and I mention all of this not to brag but to let you all know how much I've enjoyed learning about Ohio State pigskin history. I hope that the games, players, moments and traditions that we reflect on here at "Buckeye 50" will bring back great memories or even perhaps inspire our readers to study up further on Buckeye gridiron history.
You will also have the opportunity on our site to enjoy photographs from another new addition to the "Buckeye 50" staff, my longtime "Buckeye Brother" Gregg Watson. Gregg will be bring a unique perspective to our coverage. Fans all over the country have enjoyed his pictures (particularly from the memorable 2002 season) and I'm sure you will, too.
It is our hope that you'll make "Buckeye50" a regular stop as you're browsing for information on the Buckeyes, and personally I welcome any questions or feedback you may have along the way.
Go Bucks! "
Joe and Gregg are both going to be tremendous additions to our staff. Brent and I are both ecstatic to have them and their skills as part of our team! Please welcome them and feel free to e-mail them here as they are now listed in the "Contact Us" section to the left.
(p.s. in case you are wondering, JOE_S_U's score on the 100 question test was 94. Jack Park, look out!)
Friday, March 11, 2005 6:32 PM
"Everyone knows we have the best damn band in the land, now we have the best damn TEAM in the land."
Jim Tressel, in January 2003, at The National Championship Fiesta Bowl post-game celebration.
It is said that imitation is the most sincere form of flattery. I think the second most sincere must be acknowledgement by competitors and peers. Well, it just so happens that the VAST majority of Michigan State band supporters and fans feel that Ohio State IS the Best Damn Band In The Land (TBDBITL).
In an on-going poll at Michigan State's Marching Band website, almost 60% of ALL RESPONDANTS chose The Ohio State University March Band when asked the question; "Other than the SMB (Spartan Marching Band), what is your favorite big 10 band?" When I looked at the statistics, they had a total of 96 responses, of which 56 were votes for TBDBITL. The next closest band was (believe it or not) Illinois(?). Here is the table and a link to their site: http://www.spartanband.net/forum/index.php
Out of Polls
"Big 10 Bands"
Other than the SMB, what is your favorite big 10 band?
Illinois (13 votes)
Indiana (8 votes)
Iowa (1 votes)
Michigan (9 votes)
Minnesota (1 votes)
Northwestern (2 votes)
Ohio State (56 votes)
Penn State (1 votes)
Purdue (1 votes)
Wisconsin (2 votes)
The graphic is a little odd at the site, but you'll get the drift!
Tuesday, March 8, 2005 9:12 PM
Some things are best enjoyed only once, others are just as sweet a second time around. Before the final glow wears off, let's take a last look at the post-game celebration from the playing floor at the Schott from last Sunday's thrilling 65-64 win over #1 Illinois:
Sunday, March 6, 2005 3:22 PM
"Greatness, no matter how brief, tends to stay with a man."
From the Movie, 'The Replacements'
With about three minutes left in the game, you could physiologically see the fatigue of the OSU players - they were spent. You could see it in their posture, their legs, their speed, their shoulders. You could see it everywhere on them EXCEPT two places; in their eyes, and in their hearts. If Illinois had looked closely enough in both places, they would have seen fire, determination and pride.
Illinois was brilliant again today; hot shooting, hot rebounding, beating our guys down the floor, steals, and defense. Yep, for most of the first half it looked like another classic case of Illinois and everyone else. However, during halftime, someone in the locker room forgot to tell Thad Matta and the team that they were supposed to continue rolling over and playing dead the second half as well.
Ohio State came out and was no longer intimidated. They no longer saw themselves as the next victim. They believed and played 20 minutes of basketball as if their season depended upon it. Actually, it did. While everyone contributed, two hero's stood out; Terrence Dials and Matt Sylvester.
Dials got the ball early and often. He turned out to be more of a force to be reckoned with than anyone else Illinois saw all year. Rebounding, going to the basket and staking his territory like a predator, he played like a true champion. At one point, I didn't think Terrence had enough glucose in the tank to walk down court, let alone run. But he ran and jumped when there was seemingly no fuel left to burn.
Matt Sylvester just simply wanted it. In the second half, his game contained another gear and he shifted into that gear and stayed there the rest of the game. With 7 plus seconds left in the game and Ohio State down by two points, Matt pulled up several feet short of the three point line, launched the ball, and before the sound of the ball coursing through nylon untouched by the rim could resonate throughout The Schott, the crowd exploded.
It was now 65-64, the Good Guys in front of undefeated number 1, Illinois. At this moment, you saw heart, pride and determination come together at a time when there seemingly was nothing left. Illinois missed the last shot - game over. If there is any blood on the floor, in the locker rooms or on the bench, unmistakably it IS Scarlet and Gray - for CHAMPIONS BLEED SCARLET AND GRAY.
Guys, you made yourselves and ALL Buckeyes proud today; not because you won, but because of HOW and WHY you won. For you see, THAT is the secret of what being a Buckeye is really all about. Not so much the W's and L's, but at least as much for, HOW and WHY.
As for me? I just proved scientifically for the first time in history, that you can actually quantify "heart" in sports: It IS exactly,
Thursday, March 3, 2005 8:12 PM
Our re-designed website is just the beginning of what we hope are going to be many additional features, capabilities and coverage we plan to install over the next 3-6 months. We will be adding staff researchers, a photographer, additional writing help and our very own "Mini-Jack" that is, a Jack Park-like fountain of knowledge about OSU football. Don't laugh, this guy went toe-to-toe with Jack Parks last year.
Since not much is going on with football right now, over the next several weeks we are going to introduce some of the photos and tidbits of research on the front page here. Once we have things finalized with these individuals, we will formally introduce everyone so you know who to go to for whatever you need.
Here is our first photo. These will come from various sources.
Yes, you are reading this correctly. They are from the teams from '91 and '92 - 1891 and 1892, that is. This is a picture is courtesy of the Ohio State University Archives, and the players are actually wearing their game uniforms. Future photos will include the cover photo we will be using for our 'THE GAME' section to the left when it opens later this Fall. I have to tell you, this picture is SO SWEET you won't believe it.
Tuesday, March 1, 2005 3:50 PM
Who will play and who will watch? Andy Steger has an analysis and projection for the incoming freshman class now available. See, "New Blood."
Sunday, February 27, 2005 9:45 PM
Saturday, February 26, 2005 3:25 PM
Did you ever wonder just who all is actually at the NFL Combines this weekend? We now have the complete list of players and their schools. We have it available in a Microsoft Excel file. Simply go to the Editorial link (left-hand scarlet column) and click the NFL Combine List file to open.
Tuesday, February 22, 2005 10:57 AM
Troy Smith spoke to reporters this morning for the first time since his suspension last year. He was clearly happy to be back in the fold with his teammates and appeared to be sincere and remorseful about his actions.
He refused to go into details about the incident, but did say he felt particularly bad about letting down those who might follow him from his community. It appears his teammates have forgiven him and accepted him back into the family.
While the NCAA investigation remains outstanding, Troy is back participating with the team and preparing for the upcoming 2005 season. He indicated that he learned a lesson from this and seems intent on not repeating past mistakes.
Sunday, February 20, 2005 7:58 PM
Brent has performed a significant update on the recruits that OSU is following. This is a very complete list. You can access it by clicking the "Recruiting" link to the left.
Sunday, February 20, 2005 2:40 PM
Thanks to Brent for reminding me why Jim Cordle was not selected for the "Big 33" game. Jim is enrolling at Ohio State early and therefore ineligible for the game.
Saturday, February 19, 2005 4:00 PM
There is a traditional game in July of every year for the best graduating high school football players from the states of Ohio and Pennsylvania called, "The Big 33 Game." For players in these two states and their respective colleges they will attend in the Fall, this game is a big deal. To even be selected to play in this game is an honor. Last year for Pennsylvania, Chad Henne (now of TBGUN fame) was the star for Pennsylvania while (duh) Ted Ginn was one of the stars for Ohio.
The rosters for both states has just been released. Of the 18 OSU players that signed in early February as incoming Fall freshman for 2005, 10 of them are on the Ohio Big 33 roster. In case you were wondering, there were only 11 Ohio players in this class. The lone OSU player not selected was OL Jim Cordle of Lancaster. No, I don't know why.
Here is a link to the Big 33 website (link), and here is the link to the Ohio roster (Big 33 Ohio Roster). The link to the Ohio roster actually has a downloadable Microsoft Word file for those who want it.
Saturday, February 19, 2005 10:10 AM
The first editorial on the new site is now available. Click here for, "Enough is Enough.." or visit the EDITORIALS link in the top left section.
Thursday, February 17, 2005 9:00 PM
Welcome to the new Buckeye 50 Yard Line home page!!!! PLEASE read the "What's New" section right under the logo at the top of the page. It will help explain the new site, what you need to have on your computer for some of the linked sites (plug-ins), as well as the latest and greatest features. The new banner headline repeating at the top will be used for headlines and announcements. Until a major event happens, I thought we would kick-off (pun intended) this new site with perhaps one of the greatest quotes ever about Ohio State football.
Woody Hayes was so incensed with beating Michigan that he decided to drive up the score of THE GAME. After a second half touchdown (I think it was the 1968 Game) and the game more than in hand for the Bucks, he decided to go for a two point conversion instead of the one extra point. When asked later why he went for two points, he looked at the reporter who asked the question and snarled, "Because they wouldn't let me go for three!"
The "intent" for the new site is to be more of a portal. We are trying to make this into an, "In your face Buckeye experience." We have a large number of creative ideas not even mentioned yet. However, one thing at a time.
I have buried a few fun "treasures" inside the depths of this site. You will know them when you ecounter them.
We hope you enjoy the new site.
Tuesday, February 8, 2005 7:35 PM
Ross Homan decided to end the suspense before it even got started. Once he received an offer from Ohio State, he wasted little time accepting. Homan knows the blood of champion's courses through his veins.
Ross will be a senior at Coldwater high school in the Cincinnati area this fall. However, he has already drawn a large attraction nationally as a linebacker that just won't be denied on a play. Through his first three years of high school, he has already made 500 tackles. Don't let his 6'1" frame and 225 lbs. frame fool you; he ran a 4.56 40 at the OSU camp last year. His nose for the football seems more like a magnet with his serious closing speed.
The 2006 class now stands at two and there are quiet rumblings that we could receive between 2-5 more verbal's in the coming month. Time will tell, but congratulations Ross!
Mark Snyder to Remain a Buckeye
January 23, 2005 12:30pm EST
Mark Snyder has decided that being a Buckeye is better than being a Tiger. He told reporters Saturday he is happy at Ohio State and wants to remain in Columbus with Jim Tressel. This is good news for the Buckeyes in many ways, not the least of which is the defense under his direction came on very strong in the last few games and returns most of their starters for next season. Mark has a lot of reasons and motivation to remain with the team.
Basketball Bucks Drop Another Road Game
January 23, 2005 12:00pm EST
In what has become a broken record, Thad Matta's group lost another road game, this time against Indiana in Bloomington. The reasons? Same as most every loss so far this year; no bench depth, inconsistent shooting, poor free-throw shooting. However, last night two new dimensions can be added to the list; unforced turnovers and uncharacteristically poor shot selection. I don't have the statistics but my guess is that Ohio State was called for traveling at least five times and many shots looked more like Hail Mary passes in football.
That said, I still think the Buckeyes are significantly improved and the future under Thad Matta and the rest of the coaches is bright and exciting. To me personally, the team has not looked or acted the same since that double overtime loss at LSU earlier this month. The team has looked tired physically and sluggish mentally. Their intensity since that game has also been sporadic.
I have complete faith in Thad Matta and the coaches. Also, last night Thad Matta was hit with what I believe was his first technical foul as a Buckeye head coach. I never did see why and don't recall hearing an explanation. It did not appear to impact the game at all.
Are You Ready For Some Football?
January 22, 2005 11:15am EST
Personally, I am almost in withdrawal from the lack of OSU football activity and news. Following recruiting, while an intriguing soap-opera, is like trying to get a hold of jello. Plus, signing day is still about two weeks away.
So what kind of news do we have? How about another pop-quiz?
What do USC, Tennessee and Iowa have in common?
They are the only three teams rated ahead of Ohio State in the first pre-pre-season poll.
Here is a final question for extra credit:
WHERE IS TBGUN RANKED:
ANSWER: NOT in the top ten!
Co-Defensive Coordinator Mark Snyder Interviewed for the LSU DC Job
January 21, 2005 11:45am EST
The Columbus Dispatch is reporting that Ohio State defensive coordinator (co-coordinator) Mark Snyder HAS interviewed for the defensive coordinator position with LSU under new head coach Les Miles.
I find this relatively confusing (at least to this humble soul). Mark is an Ohio boy (Ironton) with few if any "apparent" ties to the South or SEC. Thus, I am missing the attraction since he is already coaching at one of the top schools in the country.
So far, Snyder has been unable to be reached for further comment.
What is the Biggest Thing Going That is OSU Football-related Fight Now?
January 20, 2005 5:07pm EST
A) Understanding the Buckeye loss to Minnesota last night?
B) Trying to following the recruiting of Jason Gwaltney?
C) Speculating on Andy Geiger's replacement?
I say the answer is D) Other. What and why?
Just my own personal opinion, but I say it is TBDBITL's invite-only command performance at the request of the president of the United States during his Inauguration Ceremonies.
President George W. Bush requested that the Ohio State University Marching Band play and participate in the parade at his second inauguration today.
Again, being one to never pass up an opportunity to get digs in at TBGUN, conspicuously missing from this invitee/participant list (here) is the University of Michigan marching band, among others. But then again, also missing are other names equally as compelling as TBGUN such as, The Salvation Army Band and Little Richard.
The Inaugural Committee sought to have every state represented. With that said, here is a summary of the list from the state of Michigan and the state of Ohio:
MICHIGAN: 1 total
(1) Mid American Pompon – Farmington Hills, MI.
OHIO: 3 total
(1) The Ohio State University Marching Band (2) Lincoln Highway National Museum & Archives – Galion, OH (3) The Firecrackers - Maineville, OH
Seriously, this is an extreme honor. The Bad Guys Up North get to sit and watch with the rest of the world. The president wanted only the very best, which is why TBDBITL is in Washington D.C. representing our great state and university, while those of the Ugly Helmets can only watch.
Pompons? Are you kidding?
Wednesday, January 19, 2005 9:10 AM
OSU Hosts Minnesota Tonight
The basketball Bucks will host Minnesota tonight at the Schott. The Golden Gophers are 12-4, 2-1 and have been a surprise this year. Thad Matta thinks the two teams almost mirror each other.
One interesting story tonight will be how Ohio State reacts mentally to back to back losses. If this team reacts like it has in the past under Matta, look for a very tough and determined game tonight. Tip-off is 8:00 PM.
Sunday, January 16, 2005 8:15 PM
A WEIRD WEEKEND
IT was a very weird weekend for many Buckeye fans; we only received one commitment for football from the Army All-American game, but were expecting more. The good news about this is that we got one of the best tailbacks, and one we really need, in Maurice Wells. Unless he gets hurt, I expect to see him play this Fall. He didn't have much impact on the game and played sparingly. This of course means nothing, but he is very quick and shifty.
The BBall Buckeyes played MATTA-BALL well, taking one of the better programs in the country into DOUBLE OVERTIME before losing 113-101. This was a game of starts and stops, and hot and cold periods for the Bucks. We almost upset them in their own backyard. Every player wearing a Scarlet & Gray uniform on Sat. night was a warrior. As I have said several times so far this year, I am very proud of the team, their effort and progress, even in defeat.
This game just continued to underscore how thin we are depth-wise. Hang on though, help is on the way. The next game is home against Minnesota on Wed.
We will continue to try gamely to follow recruiting, but I suspect it will come in dribbles here and there until signing day.
Thursday, January 13, 2005 10:30 AM
A PERSONALIZED BUCKEYE PEP RALLY
IN UPPER ARLINGTON LAST NIGHT
You may have thought nothing was happening in Buckeye-Land last night, but that was not the case. A carefully planned surprise pep-rally was put in motion featuring TBDBITL providing a salute to Andy Geiger at his home in Upper Arlington.
Serious Buckeye fans remember when we did the same thing for Earl Bruce after he was released. Earl stood in his front yard and cried openly. I was not at the rally last night, but our friends at The O-Zone were and captured a great event in pictures. Go HERE for coverage of a personal, private salute to a true, great Buckeye, TBDBITL style. Make sure you follow the links for visual and audio coverage of the event last night.
Never being one to miss a opportunity to take a shot at a foe, I am JUST guessing this little event will not make ESPN news!? And for the rest of the world, this tribute is another private example of of what being a member of the Buckeye Family means.
Wednesday, January 12, 2005 12:35 PM
Weather Report: It was cold last night outside in Madison, Wisc., but even colder inside the Kohl Center for Ohio State basketball.
Ohio State lost to Wisconsin last night 72-66, but could have won the game - I mean, it was never out of reach until the last 50 seconds.
The story of the game was simply:
- Dials got in foul trouble early
- We shot very cold most of the game, and almost all of the second half
- Intensity, which is a classic trademark of MATTA-BALL was only sporadic last night. When the Bucks were intense, the Badgers simply couldn't handle us
- No depth to replace Dials meant while he was out our scoring slowed, we lost dimensions on both offense and defense and Wisconsin went on scoring runs
We play an unsual out of conference game next against LSU in Baton Rouge on Saturday night. I know nothing about LSU as of now, but will research them and try harder to give everyone a preview.
I still love MATTA-BALL.
Monday, January 10, 2005 12:13 AM
Finally, the 2005 Recruiting page should be complete updated. We will continue our football recruiting watch as this was a big weekend for OSU and have a Center-Court preview of the upcoming war at Wisconsin.
Sunday, January 9, 2005 11:15 PM
Freddie Lenix, of Glenville High School, committed to Ohio State early this morning. The position he will play for the Buckeyes probably won't be known until at least Fall camp breaks. He has been looked at though as a possible LB, Safety, or running back. He is 5'11", 205lbs. with a 4.50/40 time. My guess is either Safety or RB, depending upon whether he performs better at one position during Fall camp.
He selected Ohio State over Wisconsin, Michigan State, Iowa, U. of North Carolina, among others. His high school coach, Ted Ginn Sr., says Lenix can play many different positions, is very durable, loves contact and is strong as a bull. Welcome Freddie!
Saturday, January 8, 2005 2:15 PM
CENTER-COURT COVERAGE of MATTA-BALL:
Final: Ohio State 81 Iowa 69
I predicted Ohio State would upset Iowa. I was wrong. It was no upset, we were the better team easily and Iowa is over-rated. MATTA-BALL was cranked up!
Our Bucks used a balance of inside strength and outside three's to keep Iowa off balance while an opportunistic Ohio State defense created turnover after turnover the first half. Iowa found themselves in a hole in the first half and never lead the game. I don't have final stats yet, but our Bucks controlled the entire game and had a much better day rebounding.
Later, we'll provide a few stats and a quick preview of our next game against Wisconsin in Madison on Tues. This will be one of, if not our toughest games of the entire season on Tues. Congratulations guys!
Friday, January 7, 2005 6:58 PM
For those who didn't watch the game Wed. @ Illinois, the game probably seemed like a whitewash on us. That is not how I saw the game. Here is what I think I saw:
- The Bucks played with tremendous heart the entire game, but in particular the first half and five min. or so into the second half
- The obvious lack on our part of a deep bench, particularly at power forward and center
- An extremely well coached Illinois team
- An even more talented Illinois team that I first thought
- An Illinois team that seemed to hit everything from everywhere. Yes, I am giving Illinois a lot of credit because I think it is deserved.
- The game was closer than the final score revealed until about the last ten minutes of the game. Illinois took over and we were spent
- I was proud of our team and coaches, even in defeat
I am going to be very interested in how our team and coaches respond to this defeat AND how we play at home in our first home Big Ten game.
There may be some who laugh at this, but I thought we had an outside possibility of upsetting Illinois. After watching them, no way. However, I think we will surprise many this season. Even head coach Bruce Webber said he was scared and concerned about playing us and that he was worried his team wasn't taking us as seriously has he felt they should. When we took the lead in the first half several times, I think it more than got their attention.
Dials was held in check extremely well and we were forced into a perimeter game that we couldn't pull off. Great effort though.
Against Iowa, I am predicting we upset them tomorrow at home! They are just coming off a bitterly close loss (65-63) against the Bad Guys Up North (Michigan - a.k.a. TBGUN) at home earlier this week. How THEY respond will also be interesting. I see the potential for a real chess match on Saturday and gut-check time for both teams.
Iowa comes in with only 2 losses this year; North Carolina (106-92) and TBGUN. I was at last year's game when we played Iowa at the Schott and was embarrassed to even be in attendance. I suspect Thad Matta will be using this as fuel for the fire.
Site Feature Update
January 2, 2005 1:30pm EST
We have updated our archives so they can ALL be accessed from one central main archive page. The previous archive link only pointed to one page and its time period, but now you can see all that we have. There are a very few missing or file-corrupt time periods we can't get to for various reasons, but the vast majority are now available.
BBALL Update - Alamo Coverage Comment
January 1, 2005 10:39pm EST
THE BBALL BUCKS:
Ohio State 72
St. Joseph's 61
Terence Dials had 24 points and a third consecutive double/double last night. St. Joseph's is probably one of the better teams we have seen in preseason play, but OSU was still somewhat sluggish.
It was 36-26 at halftime, but St. Joseph's climbed back to within 3 points in the second half. That's when the offense went on a 9-2 run and finished with a aggressive defense.
The BBall team rests up until this Wed. when we play #1 Illinois in Champagne. THIS will be a very tough game, but our young and confident team doesn't seem to be intimidated.
ON ESPN's COVERAGE OF THE ALAMO BOWL
I was going to write a lengthy piece about this, but got to thinking that ESPN didn't merit my time after all. I will leave it to say that I have NEVER in my life seen more unprofessional, biased, vicious and self-serving reporting journalism in my lifetime. All of their mothers' should be ashamed. I had previously held Mike Tirico in high esteem but see him now as the corporate sellout that he apparently is. This was very disappointing conduct by three otherwise intelligent and seemingly professional adults. However, Buckeyes are greatest when facing adversity. So let's circle the wagons.