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Looking ahead to Wisconsin

Discussion in 'Buckeye Football' started by BrutusBobcat, Sep 22, 2004.

  1. BrutusBobcat

    BrutusBobcat Icon and Entertainer

    Sorry for jumping the gun, Clarity. :)

    This is the game I am revved up for. We've got a bye, then NW to get tuned up for Barry and the boys. So what do we know?

    We know some Jim Leonhard returning punt and creating some special teams mayhem. I like the way Sirjo was down field and in the returner's face a few times against NCSU, and he's going to need to be bringing some of that.

    Anthony Davis may or may not be back. He's due to be re-evaluated this week, I believe. Booker Stanley has been solid in replacing him, but either way, we're going to be facing a team that will test our rushing defense. Given that TA McLendon saw only marginal success, I'm optimistic on that matchup if it's Stanley. I am little more wary about Davis, but he may be rusty with a long layoff this early in the year. He's only seen Central Florida so far.

    Wisky hasn't seen much of a defense yet, but Stocco has done alright for them so far. He hasn't made a lot of mistakes, and has seemingly thrown well enough to keep the ball moving. He's used a lot of receivers, particularly Stanley coming out of the backfield (8 rec for 65 yards, no TDs) and WR Jonathan Orr (5 rec for 70 yards, 1 TD).

    Their third down efficiency has been right around 40%, and surprisingly, they have 3-4 tries at fourth down per game. Here's why:

    Their kicking game looks weak right now, with kicker Mike Allen at only 50%. He's 1 for 3 beyond 30 yards, and his lone "long" FG is 40. Advatage Buckeyes, and in a big way.

    Summing all of that up, I don't see Wisconsin putting many points on the board. Certainly, the weather in the Arizona game was a big factor. We'll see a lot more about them when they play Penn State this week. I think that's a "must watch" game for us Buckeye fans. Both Wisky and PSU have some things to prove in that contest.

    Wisconsin's defense has been outstanding, giving up 6, 3 and 7 points in their first three games. Their rushing defense is the core of what they do. None of their first three opponents have managed 100 yards on the ground, so we're going to need to get better quickly. It could be a long day for Mr. Ross. That is also not from lack of effort. UCF managed 53 on 35 carries; UNLV got 72 on 27 tries; Arizona managed 96 on 33 attempts.

    What their defense hasn't done much of is earn turnovers. One INT and one fumble recovery against UCF, and that's it. They are negative on the year in turnover margin, with three lost fumbles and one INT.

    For the season, they're giving up around 10 yards per catch, and holding opponents to under 50% completions. They've given up one TD in the air and had one INT. No opposing quarterback has had much of a game against them so far, with UCF's Moffett reaching the high water mark of 177 yards. They lead the B10 in passing D, followed by OSU, and are second in total defense, also followed by OSU.

    With 9 sacks on the year, they're not only bringing solid coverage, but they are also bringing pressure. Erasmus James is their sack leader, but DT Anttaj Hawthorne is another guy you need to get some bodies on, as we well know.

    This game is going to be a fun one. Wisky in many ways looks similar to OSU. They take care of the football, commit few penalties, their defense is build on a solid D line, and their secondary players cover and tackle well. Alvarez coaches the same fundamental game that Tressel does -- field position, defense, special teams, no mistakes. For people who love well played football, this should be the game of the year.

    Where we have the edge is in place kicking, a better passing game, and a defense that has started taking the ball away. The return games are probably a wash, and the defenses may be close to equal (other than turnovers). Right now, you'd have to say Wisconsin's running game has a solid edge, and a bigger one when Davis returns. I think we have the better linebackers; they probably have some better individual talents on the d-line, whereas we have more depth.

    So, watch the PSU-UW game this week! There's a lot we're going to learn about Wisky. It's our next big test now that the Wolfpack has been tamed. The Badgers may march in unbeaten and well into the top 20, with their next two games being PSU and Illinois at home in Madison.
  2. StoRMinBrutus

    StoRMinBrutus Great 2 B A Buckeyes !!!

    Thats always one heck of a dog fight

    I think these next two weeks our O-line is going to be working on fundementals and communication all day long and hopefully we'll see a stark improvement, against NW and then Wisconsin, in our running game. If OSU gets some good long Offensive drive we got that game , but if not ... long day but STILL have to give it to our BUCKEYES (Mainly cuz I will never admit to anything other than a win haha).
    No matter what though its going to be a GREAT and tough, hard hitting game.
  3. stowfan

    stowfan Senior

    I hope that kid Hawthorne gets the flu that week or something. I still have nightmares with a number 77 in them.
  4. scooter1369

    scooter1369 HTTR Forever.

    I concur.
  5. Sdgobucks

    Sdgobucks Pig on a wing

    I see like a 1960's 5-3 score in this one with us on top ... just because its in the shoe.
  6. JXC

    JXC 17-3 since 2001

    Gotta get by Northwestern first. That game wasn't so easy on our way to a national championship two years ago. If we struggle running the ball against Northwestern, I don't know what we are going to do against Wisconsin. We won't win the big 10 without being able to run the ball.

    I hope the Northwestern game is a breakout day for our rushing offense and defense.
  7. DEBuckeye

    DEBuckeye It ain't easy, bein' cheesy.

    I'll tell you what we're going to need to beat Wisconsin- Pittman.
  8. MegaWoody

    MegaWoody Newbie

    Great analysis of the game, Brutus.

    Absolutely correct that Wisconsin will be a huge game for us and right on about the Wisky-JoePa match-up. I'll be watching, glued to the tube.

    I don't think JT will ever abandon the run, even if it's not producing much. He likes it because it eats up the clock and keeps the defense honest to set up lightning-strike passes. He probably won't even abandon the up-the-gut stuff that has been so frustrating this year.

    But what I am hoping for is more success in the four and five wideout formations. We have some unbelievable talent on the field when Bam, Santonio, Teddy, Roy and Ryan are eligible. Wisky will be forced to cover the whole field, not just bunch up in the middle. And if Zwick can get the ball to any one of those guys, we can score at any time -- or at least move down into Nugeville, just beyond mid-field.

    I continue to believe that this will become a terrific offensive football team, despite the first three games and despite Lydell's struggles. There is just too much talent there. Think of the guys who haven't really had a chance to perform yet -- Antonio Pittman, Branden Joe, Teddy Ginn, Roy Hall, Eric Haw, Troy Smith, Devon Lyons, Albert Dukes. If just one or two of these guys break out this year, along side Zwick, Childress, Hamby and Holmes tOSU will be very hard to contain.

    So I'll be watching this Saturday and will 'keep hope alive!' for the Buckeye offense.

    Great post, Brutus.
  9. DCBuckFan

    DCBuckFan Fark You

    Didn't TA, and Washington for that matter, do pretty darn well against us? I thought they averaged over 6 ypc... I am optimistic we will do better vs NW and wiscy, but NC St lit us up a little, and probably should of exploited that more..
  10. brnzfan57

    brnzfan57 Newbie

    My thoughts:
    A team has to be two dimensional to beat us. They need to be able to run and pass the ball well to beat us especially in the shoe. If Our defense can make a team 1 dimensional the other tea will not win. Wiscy will have to prove that they can throw the ball and throw it well for us to respect the pass or we'll simply stack the line like teams do to us. They don't to my knowledge have a deep play threat and with the possiblity of Fox being back I'm not worried on their recievers beating us deep. Therefore I see Sally and Whitner playing close to the line of scrimage and stuffing the run. I see this game being played as classic Tressel ball with field position. The variable will be if their D.T. get penetration like last year. If they start getting penetration and blow up Lydell in the backfield for lbig osses, moving us out of F.G. range, I see Tressel spreading it out and doing quick passes. I don't think Wiscy has the talent to matchup up with Holmes, Bam, Ginn, Hall, and Hamby when split out.

    In summary O.S.U. at home makes Wiscy 1 dimensional and takes this game moving us to 5-0 and #3 in the country.
  11. BrutusBobcat

    BrutusBobcat Icon and Entertainer

    TA had one big run, and he did a really nice job on on his TD run, but the rest of the game I felt that we had him pretty well contained. That guy is a major talent, so you don't shut him down completely.

    Washington was a different matter, and you're right -- he really came out of the gate fast and had a great game. Once again, we have trouble with a small, quick cutback runner. They also used a lot of misdirection to get our defense to overpursue and get RW into more open field. I don't see Booker Stanley as a Richard Washington type, however, and I don't see Wisky trying to live going off going to the outside like NCSU did with RW.

    Either way, we are going to have to step up the rushing D on UW. My main point was that Davis concerns me a lot more than Stanley. I think Stanley is the kind of back we can keep well contained, but Davis has the skillset that always seem to cause problems for us.

    BTW, I did some checking on the Badger boards, and the best info they came up with was that it's possibly an orbital fracture:

    Looks like he's still out for PSU and questionable for Illinois.
  12. zincfinger

    zincfinger Gert Frobe-approved

    That's a decent half-game for Santonio.

    They usually have a pretty solid D, but I'll give more credence to those types of numbers after they play a team with a somewhat dangerous offense.
  13. Oh8ch

    Oh8ch Cognoscente of Omphaloskepsis Staff Member

    TA had four runs for 10 yards or more. Washington had a 12 yard run and Hall one for 10. Overall they had 178 yards rushing at a 4.5 YPC clip. I wouldn't call that bottling them up.

    I strongly disagree with those who are saying Washington is the better back. He has great speed and nice moves, but TA can break a tackle the way MC used to do. A good DC can stop a back like Washington - albeit it with a compromise somewhere else. TA has the potential to break a play on any given down.
  14. souL

    souL I.bulldoze

    I'd have taken it in a half v. NCST
  15. KillerNut

    KillerNut Banned

    I could be wrong about this, but I believe Barry Alvarez is the only Big ten coach to have a winning record vs. Tressel.

    In my opinion this is what makes this game scary. Barry plays a very similar game as JT, and has out Tresseled Tressleball 2X out of three years. What makes it worse is that one of those wins was at the Horseshoe. We have not beaten Wisconsin in Columbus in quite a while.

    I know Wisconsin will try to run the ball on us, which will likely not be successful. We couldn't run the ball versus NC A&T Tech State, so running the ball vs. Wisconsin will be a chore.

    Wisconsin also has the personel and mindset to Blitz us. If we can't beat it, we will be in big trouble. This will be a very big game. Although we should be favored, I look for us to struggle to win this one.

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