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Ohio State Athletics Fan Community

1. Last week, Ezekiel Elliott passed Chris "Beanie" Wells for 4th place on Ohio State's career rushing leaders. Zeke now has 3,384 yards rushing, and he needs 170 yards to surpass Tim Spencer (3,553 yards) for 3rd place and 385 yards to pass Eddie George (3,768 yards) for 2nd place. Unless Zeke returns to Ohio State for his senior season, he has no chance to pass Buckeye career rushing leader Archie Griffin (5,589 yards).

2. Zeke has 1,244 rushing yards so far this season, which is already the 18th best single season in Ohio State history. If Zeke hits his season average (138 yards) against Illinois, then he will move into 12th place on the Buckeyes' list of single-season rushing leaders.

3. Zeke has 14 rushing touchdowns so far this season. Pete Johnson holds the Buckeye single-season record with 25 touchdowns rushing touchdowns in 1975.

4. Elliott now has 34 career rushing touchdowns (tied with Jim Otis). Zeke needs just two touchdowns to tie Tim Spencer and Harold "Champ" Henson for fifth place on Ohio State's list of career rushing touchdown leaders, and three touchdowns to tie Carlos Hyde for fourth place. Pete Johnson tops the list with 56 career rushing touchdowns (1973 to 1976).

5. Michael Thomas has 1,406 receiving yards for his Buckeye career, good for 21st place at Ohio State. Thomas needs 14 yards receiving to pass Bobby Olive (1,419 yards) for 20th place, 24 yards to pass Brian Hartline (1,429 yards) for 19th place, and 76 yards to pass John Frank (1,481 yards) for 18th place.

6. Michael Thomas has 96 receptions for his Buckeye career, tied with Brian Stablein for 18th place at Ohio State. Thomas needs 4 receptions to pass Jeff Graham (99 receptions) for 17th place, and 11 receptions to pass Doug Donley and Ken-Yon Rambo (106 receptions) for 15th place.

7. Joey Bosa has 45.5 TFLs for his Buckeye career, which ties him with Will Smith for 5th place. Bosa needs 4.5 TFL to tie Andy Katzenmoyer (50.0 TFLs) for 4th place. Mike Vrabel leads...
1. Ohio State has played Illinois 101 times since the series began in 1902; the only team that Ohio State has played more often is Michigan (111 games since 1897). Ohio State leads the series 67-30-4, for a .683 winning percentage.

2. Ohio State got off to a very slow start in the series, with a 0-0 tie in 1902; a 46-0 loss in 1904; and a 37-0 loss in 1914. The Buckeyes finally managed a field goal in 1915 to force a 3-3 tie with the Fighting Illini. Ohio State's first win came the following season, when the legendary Chic Harley led the Buckeyes to a 7-6 road victory.

3. With Chic Harley leading the way, the Buckeyes compiled a 7-0-0 record in 1916 and an 8-0-1 in 1917 (including a 13-0 win over Illinois). During that 16-game unbeaten run, the Buckeyes outscored their opponents by a combined 550 to 35 (or 34 to 2 on a per game basis) with 10 shutouts. When Harley left to serve in World War One in 1918, the team fell into a state of mediocrity, posting a 3-3 record which included a 13-0 loss to Illinois.

4. Harley had one year of eligibility left and he returned to the Ohio State squad for the 1919 season. The Buckeyes quickly regained their lost greatness, beating their first six opponents by a combined 169 to 3. In the seventh and final game of the season, Ohio State faced a 5-1-0 Illinois squad with a Big Ten championship on the line. Trailing 7 to 6 with two minutes left in the game, Illinois quickly drove into field goal range. With their best kicker (Ralph Fletcher) sidelined with an injury, the Fighting Illini turned to Fletcher's brother Bob. It was a desperate move, as Bob Fletcher had never attempted a field goal before. But apparently Bob quickly learned place kicking from his brother Ralph through osmosis, as his 25-yard attempt was good. Ohio State was unable to score during the final seconds and Illinois won the game by the score of 9-7, handing Chic Harley the first and only loss of his Buckeye career.

5. In retroactive national title...
We are now in that time of year where just about everybody seems to pack on a few extra pounds. The weather is a little less pleasant and the football more compelling, so we end up sitting on our asses eating more nachos and drinking more beer. Thanksgiving is right around the corner and only adds to that. Christmas too. There are parties and get-togethers and food and drink are about endless.

Poobert knows all about this. He used to be a skinny-mini. Just look at him in this picture, taken not long after he was adopted:

Poobert when he was young, before the dreaded Freshman 15.

It didn't take long for him to become fat as hell. Here he is just a couple years later:

Picture 020 (2).jpg
After he was adopted, Poobert realized he didn't have to impress anybody anymore.
Only Bret Bielema has gotten fatter faster. As he waddles around the house with his belly flopping back and forth...
1. The Ohio State Buckeyes (9-0; 5-0) kept their perfect season and national title hopes alive with a 28-14 victory over a pesky Minnesota Golden Gophers (4-5; 1-4) squad that has played tough against #3 OSU, #8 TCU, and #17 Michigan so far this season. Quarterback Cardale Jones, subbing for a temporarily suspended J.T. Barrett, had a decent game by the numbers: 12/22 passing for 187 yards, one TD, no INTs; 12 rushes for 65 yards including a game-clinching 38-yard touchdown run with under two minutes left in the game. Running back Ezekiel Elliott had his 14th straight game of 100+ yards (26 carries, 114 yards, TD). Wide receiver Michael Thomas was his steady self with 4 receptions for 39 yards and a TD, while Jalin Marshall and Braxton Miller each caught long balls (44 yards and 45 yards, respectively). Even with all that production, the Buckeye offense still seemed out of sorts for much of the evening (7/16 on third downs, 7 punts, 4 sacks, fumble). On the other side, Minnesota couldn't run the ball worth a damn (26 carries, 33 yards, 1.3 ypc), but Gopher quarterback Mitch Leidner lit up the Buckeyes' vaunted pass defense (#2 yardage, #4 efficiency entering the contest) for 27 completions on 44 attempts (61.4%), 281 yards, and a pair of touchdowns (but also a very costly pick six to Buckeye safety Vonn Bell). Leidner's primary target was K.J. Maye who hauled in 10 passes for 116 yards (long of 57 yards) and a touchdown. The Buckeyes still look like a playoff contender, especially with so many other hopefuls going down this week (previously undefeated Texas Christian, Michigan State, Louisiana State, Memphis, and Toledo all suffered their first loss), but there seems to be some magic missing from this year's squad.

2. The Michigan Wolverines (7-2; 4-1) staked their claim to be the best two-loss team in the country with a resounding 49 to 16 win over...
1. Last season, Minnesota was down 17 points with 10:08 left in the game; at the 1:19 mark, they were attempting an onside kick for a chance to tie the game. Last night, Minnesota was down 21 points with 14:42 left to play; at the 2:03 mark, they were attempting an onside kick for a chance to tie the game.

2. Last night, Alabama beat LSU 30-16 at home. The Tide held the Tigers to 54 yards rushing on 26 attempts (2.1 ypc). Last night, Ohio State beat Minnesota 28-14 at home. The Buckeyes held the Golden Gophers to 33 yards rushing on 26 attempts (1.3 ypc). So who will get credit for having the great victory? Granted, LSU was undefeated and ranked top-5 in all polls and Minnesota was a 4-4 team. But LSU had struggled in several games this season and proved themselves to be a one-dimensional team, while Minnesota had a highly-rated defense and played #8 TCU and #17 Michigan to within one score. The Minnesota win was a quality win, but the Buckeyes will get zero credit for it from the national pundits.

3. LSU running back Leonard Fournette began yesterday as the Heisman frontrunner; Alabama held him to 31 yards on 19 carries (1.6 ypc) and a late, meaningless touchdown. TCU quarterback Trevone Boykin was also garnering a lot of Heisman hype; Oklahoma State, not known as a defensive juggernaut, forced him into four interceptions including a pick six and a near pick six (down at the one-yard line) and stuffed him on a crucial 4th-and-goal from the one-half-yard line. Ezekiel Elliot began the day with 1,130 yards rushing (142 yards per game) and 13 touchdowns; against a top-25 Minnesota defense that was selling out to stop the run, Zeke had his 14th consecutive 100-yard game (26 carries, 114 yards, 4.4 ypc) and a nifty 15-yard touchdown run. So who leads the Heisman race now? Alabama's Derrick Henry, of course. S-E-C!

4. For the Ohio State offense to be effective, it needs a quarterback who can: (a) run the ball; and (b) hit the deep pass. Cardale Jones had runs of...
1. Ohio State has a record of 44-7-0 (.863 winning percentage) over Minnesota. Ohio State has won nine games in a row in the series. The Golden Gophers' last win over the Buckeyes came during the 2000 season, by the score of 29-17.

2. Ohio State has outscored Minnesota in the series by 1,568 to 661, or an average score per game of 31 to 13.

3. Minnesota and Ohio State did not play each other between 1950 (Buckeyes won 48-0) and 1965 (Buckeyes won 11-10).

4. It's hard to believe now, but Minnesota used to be one of the giants of college football. From 1900 to 1941, Minnesota compiled an overall record of 248-68-22 for a .766 winning percentage. During that four-decade period Minnesota had the third best record in college football, behind only Notre Dame (.822 winning percentage) and Michigan (.772 winning percentage).

5. From 1942 to 2014, Minnesota hasn't fared quite as well. The Gophers overall record since 1942 is 361-403-16 for a .473 winning percentage, which is 80th among FBS schools.

6. From 1900 to 1941, Minnesota had sixteen Big Ten championships and five national titles (1934, 1935, 1936, 1940, 1941).

7. Minnesota actually won a national championship in 1936 without winning the Big Ten title. That year, the Golden Gophers (7-1-0) lost to the Northwestern Wildcats (7-1-0) by the score of 6 to 0. Despite the facts that the two teams had identical overall records and the Gophers had lost the head-to-head matchup, the AP pollsters (in the initial year of the poll) voted Minnesota #1 and Northwestern #7. However, Northwestern still won the Big Ten title based on its victory over Minnesota.

8. From 1942 to 2014, Minnesota had only two Big Ten championships (1960, 1967) and one national title (1960). Needless to say, Minnesota (4-4 overall, 1-3 in Big Ten) will not win any championships in 2015.

9. Minnesota's 18 Big Ten championships ranks third in the conference, behind Michigan (42) and Ohio State (36).

It's November - one of Poobert's favorite times of year. It's all about quality time. We'll spend entire days together around the Thanksgiving holiday when I get some time off work. The weather cools down, which means the heater kicks on. We'll even hang out by the fireplace some. And of course, college football starts heating up too. The matchups are bigger and matter more than the ones in previous weeks, and the experience of watching and hanging on every moment becomes even more intense.

I've made it sound like he just sleeps through everything, but he's really caught up in the drama of the season. This past Saturday he came up to get me out of bed so I could turn on College Gameday for him. This took place right after the JT Barrett news had broken, and I caught is reaction on camera.

Poobert was like, "WHAAAAAAAA?!"
Poobert was sad to hear about JT Barrett. He's ready to move on though and ready to see the Buckeyes kick some butt. He doesn't care who starts, and always thinks the Buckeyes will win no matter what. That's why we get along so well.

The games don't look like they'll suck this week. Here are our picks...
This week was the Buckeyes' bye week. Including them about half of the current top ten was idle. Most of the games scheduled for yesterday sucked. That doesn't mean we didn't see significant things taking place. How has the playoff picture changed? What is the Buckeyes place? Here are all the things you know to not sound like an idiot talking about college football this week:

What We Learned About the Buckeyes:

JT Barrett was arrested for OVI. He has been suspended for next week's game against Minnesota. You won't find any sanctimony on this situation in this column - either as it refers to the magnitude of the mistake or the magnitude of the punishment. I'd rather focus on what this means for the team. They are still trying to win a championship after all.

As a fan, it's disappointing that right after we all thought that this season's interminable quarterback controversy was finally settled, it's suddenly up in the air again. Cardale Jones has an opportunity that he probably thought he wouldn't get - a chance to start without having to look over his shoulder. The last games he played under those circumstances were in December and January of last season. Perhaps against Minnesota he can rediscover a bit of that confidence and form. In light of the way he played earlier in the season though, it is a little scary to have him out there with no safety net. On one hand Jones might be able to play more loose and free. On the other hand, if he struggles as badly as he did against Northern Illinois he and the coaches will have to find a way to fix what's wrong instead of just switching to the other guy.

I've never particularly been a Team Cardale or Team JT guy. I've tried to hold off on making projections about what will happen and stick to reacting to what I see. That said, I hope Jones makes that most of his start against Minnesota and renews his claim to the starting job. It would mean that the Buckeyes would not miss a beat, and keeping the team's goals on track is the most important thing at the moment.

What We Learned About the Rest of College Football:
  • Nebraska is in a world of trouble. They are in the midst of a historically bad season for their program. They are only in the first year of coach Mike Riley's regime, and while many would say that the Cornhuskers can't fire him yet, there are plenty of reasons why it would be a good idea to do so...
1. There's usually a reason why a guy spends 20+ years in coaching and never gets the head gig. Staggering levels of ineptitude is quite often that reason. Exhibit A is Minnesota Golden Gophers (4-4; 1-3) interim head coach Tracy Claeys. After Jerry Kill abruptly retired for health reasons last Wednesday, Gopher defensive coordinator Claeys was thrust into the interim position, admittedly a tough task on such short notice. But what isn't such a tough task is clock management, something that even a Pop Warner coach should have a handle on. Trailing the #15 Michigan Wolverines (6-2; 3-1) by the score of 29 to 26 with 19 seconds left on the game clock, Minnesota quarterback Mitch Leidner completed what appeared to be a 23-yard game-winning touchdown pass to Drew Wolitarsky. Replays clearly showed that Wolitarsky made a clean catch but that his knee was down before the ball crossed the goal line, and the Big Ten replay official correctly (imagine that!) placed the ball at the 1/2-yard line. The game clock stopped for the first down and during the review, but it would begin again as soon as the ball was set for play. You knew that. I knew that. Everybody in the stands knew that. Even the freaking television announcers knew that. But apparently Tracy Claeys had no clue, because he called a play with multiple shifts that took 13 seconds before the ball could even be snapped and another 4 seconds to execute (and I use that term loosely). The play itself, an ill-conceived pass to a tight end who couldn't even manage to run his route into the end zone from 18 inches away, fell incomplete stopping the clock with just 2 seconds left. Then instead of kicking the game-tying field goal and playing to win in overtime, thus giving fans and pundits a chance to forget his massive blunder for the time being, Claeys called his final timeout to come up with that one unstoppable play that would guarantee...
This weekend is Halloween. There are plenty of scary and spooky things around, not the least of which are the state of me and Poobert's picks. The overall standings haven't really changed that much in the past several weeks - I've been hovering just inside the top ten in the standings and Poobert has been in the lower 20s - still ahead of several people.

The scariest thing of all this on Saturday won't be ghouls or goblins or monsters though - it's the fact that the Buckeyes aren't playing. That means we'll have some extra time this weekend that we won't know how to spend. That's a dangerous thing for cat people, and it's especially dangerous for cat people who blog about their cats (or whatever it is you would call this.)

The temptation for Halloween would be to dress the cats up. I'm some would suggest it as an idea for this week's post or want to see the funny pictures that might result from such a thing. The cats would have none of that though. One is too mean and the other is too scared for us to do it.
So, there will be no cats in Halloween costumes. Instead, keeping with the Halloween theme, I want to share some of the things that the cats think are scary...