Open Thread: Purdue

Posted by Vico in Buckeye Football, Open Threads |

Hero of the Day
I had planned a What to Watch for feature for yesterday, and typed it all up.  However, WordPress swallowed it and invited me to try again.  I didn’t feel like it, so here’s only the second post of the week.

Nevertheless, Purdue — home of the World’s Largest Drum — is up next and it’s cause for us to celebrate some of the better moments of the Purdue-OSU series in the past couple years.  A few days ago, I uploaded a Drive-Thru compilation of the Holy Buckeye game, perhaps the most celebrated in all the series.  It’s a toss-up between the 1968 or 2002 games for most celebrated in Ohio State lore, but the common denominator there is that the victory over Purdue paved the way for a national championship.  Today, I give necessary props to Ben Jones, my hero of the day1 for November, 15 2003.  It is Purdue’s first visit to Columbus since that game.

So, here’s what I’m chewing on about the Purdue game.

  • Dane Sanzenbacher, as you might have guessed, is out for the Purdue game after getting his brains scrambled by the Badgers.  Ray Small, though, is not a certain go for the Purdue game either.  This means DeVier Posey gets moved to second in the depth chart at split end and, potentially, Lamaar “Flash” Thomas gets moved to second in the slot.  Opportunities abound for the freshmen in a season that was supposed to be dominated by seniors.
  • When Steve Rehring came back from injury after the USC debacle, the consensus seemed to be that he would be inserted back in at left guard, moving Cordle back to center and Michael Brewster back to the bench.  However, Brewster has established him as the center, an impressive feat in and of itself for a true freshman and one with no previous experience at center.  Now, Rehring, Browning and Person will be part of a three man rotation for the right side of the line.  To be honest, and though I was critical of him early on, I see no reason to shuffle Browning in and out of the game on offense since he’s become a solid performer.  So far, it looks like Rehring will be at right tackle and Browning and Person will exchange time at right guard.
  • I’m finally getting my wish: with Boom Herron’s brains also being scrambled by the Badgers, Lamaar Thomas will take his kickoff return duties.  I’m getting ready to yell at him through the TV for carrying the ball like a loaf of bread (a problem all freshmen have), but I’m a bit surprised why he wasn’t in the mix earlier.  Technically, it’ll be a 3 man rotation on kickoffs, also including Mo Wells.
  • Boom Herron should also be missed in the backfield.  I’m not sure who the no. 2 is on the depth chart, or at least most importantl, who would stand behind Pryor in the Buckeye Pistol.  Saine is now listed as no. 2 in the depth chart, so if he’s the guy, there’d be no time like the present to show that he’s not just a track player trying to play football.
  • I’m convinced Purdue’s offensive line isn’t very good.  It’d be easy to throw stones on that regard, but the truth is that our defensive line is probably even worse.  The fact that only 50 percent of respondents to my totally scientifically valid poll question think that our defensive tackles can dominate against Purdue is both damning and depressing.  Our defensive line is among the worst in college football in the important dimensions of sacks (77th nationally) and TFLs (103rd) and our tackles constitute a large part of the problem.  I’ve touched in this in past game synopses here, but often times, our defensive tackles don’t even register a statistic.
  • I know people have taken shots at our linebackers (specifically Laurinaitis) for being overrated.  Whatever kernel of truth there is to that is ultimately a function of how poorly the defensive line has been.  If you look at the past couple games, or even try to infer from statistics, you’ll see that the linebackers have been getting quite a workout.  The solution for the defense so far (on passing plays) has been to keep the deep options covered and force the underneath throw so Homan and Laurinaitis can jump it and end the play for minimal gain.  So far, so good.  It’s not a reliable solution to the problems on defense, but it’s working for now.
  • On the flipside, I really like how well our offensive line is gelling.  I see consistent improvement across all players — probably sans Ben Person.  I see flashes of Alex Boone’s inner mean drunk, Browning becoming more well-rounded and a true freshman under center looking more and more like an upperclassman.  I feel confident we can the trenches while on offense.  Of course, I felt that way against Ohio too.  Hmmm.
  • I really hope the staff takes a cybernetic approach to Terrelle Pryor, encouraging himself not to get too lost in the details for now.  Wisconsin really chewed him up for huge losses when he tried to do too much.
  • On a recruiting note, Marlon Brown and Ra’shede Hageman will be in town for this game.  This represents the first official visits for the Buckeyes of the 2008 season.  Brown is definitely in the DO WANT category, and with each passing day, there’s more optimism that he would commit.

We should be around for this game.  Feel free to leave a comment.

  1. I know my freshman roommate reads this still… I’m trying to see if he can pick up the reference here… []


Written by: Vico | full bio

Vico is the nom de guerre of the founder and current website chair of Our Honor Defend. He is currently living in exile in Alabama.


40 Responses to “Open Thread: Purdue”

  1. 1 Travis

    I too came over for that game. It’s been my only visit to the ‘shoe. While i was impressed by the campus and everything, it was a looooooong drive back to Indiana.

  2. 2 BuckeyeJay

    I would love to get a better look at the underclass speed we have on the team. Posey and flash are going to be special. As far as I am concerned Ben Person should be done. The defensive line needs bow up and we need to play more man coverge so we can stop the run early. This needs to be the game that we start hanging 40 or so on everyone we play. I like the changes we have made so far and look for more underclassmen to start contributing in a big way. Two big recruits are on campus this weekend so throw the ball to WR’s and TE’s to so they committ soon. GO BUCKS!

  3. 3 Vico

    Purdue was tough in 2003, and we certainly couldn’t run the ball against Purdue (or really anyone that year). Stuart Schweigert was scary as hell too. More tense games for the Buckeyes that year, and we were fortunate enough for Ben Jones that day. Thanks Travis for coming in and sharing (curiously enough, most Big Ten outsiders that visit Ohio State that I know of say the campus is ugly), and for not rubbing in 2004 in spite of the references here to Ben Jones and Holy Buckeye ;) .

  4. 4 Gabby Jay

    Why is Michigan tied 10-10 with Toledo at the end of the 3rd quarter?

  5. 5 Gabby Jay

    addendum: why is Michigan now trailing Toledo in the 4th quarter?

  6. 6 Gabby Jay

    Oh good Lord in Heaven, Michigan…

  7. 7 Vico

    at this point, I don’t even know what to say other than, well… wow. Just… wow.

  8. 8 Vico

    Jesus Christ, we got hoodwinked by ABC’s coverage maps. We’re getting UNC-Notre Dame

  9. 9 Gabby Jay

    what the fuck is this shit? Goddamn you ABC/ESPN. Goddamn you ABC/ESPN

  10. 10 Vico

    Oh great, just great. We have UNC-ND on both ABC and ESPN at the moment. Awesome, ABC and ESPN. Thanks.

  11. 11 Vico

    about fsking time, Rece Davis. Now I want an apology for missing a special teams TD.

  12. 12 Gabby Jay

    Thaddeus. f’n. Gibson.

  13. 13 Vico

    It was nice, but much of the defense sucked for that drive.

  14. 14 Vico

    The Stiffarm of Justice. Nice.

  15. 15 Vico

    I know Beanie needs a breather, but then why do we go I-formation tailback dive with Mo Wells then?

  16. 16 Gabby Jay

    double fuckup for Purdue’s defense. Nicely done.

  17. 17 Vico

    I really wanted six on that last red zone appearance. I loved the playcall for Flash, but wasn’t a fan of the horsecollar or offsides jump. Pryor is staring down Posey a bit too much for my liking. More observations to follow.

  18. 18 Vico

    Thaddeus f’n Gibson gets the big ol’ assist on that INT. Lawrence Wilson too.

  19. 19 Gabby Jay

    Our 3rd down conversion percentage… could be better. That field goal was miss all the way, sadly. Purdue desperately wants to lose this game, so why aren’t we helping them while on offense?

  20. 20 Vico

    I will never understand why we insist on running Mo Wells up the middle.

  21. 21 Gabby Jay

    we threw to Ballard! It’s a celebration!

  22. 22 Vico

    Goddammit Hartline.

  23. 23 Gabby Jay

    This is getting kind of silly. Purdue is doing everything possible to get routed in this game and our offense isn’t helping them.

  24. 24 Vico

    and Steve Rehring is in this game because… ?

  25. 25 Gabby Jay

    Our offensive line is an idiot. This game is an idiot.

  26. 26 Vico

    It really is pick your poison with Rehring or Person this game. This hurts.

  27. 27 Vico

    sigh… defense. That was hard to watch.

  28. 28 Vico

    Offense is optional this game, I see. Whenever the first down play gets snuffed for no gain, Beanie goes out, Mo Wells come in and the Buckeyes head backwards.

  29. 29 Gabby Jay

    Lamaar Thomas!

  30. 30 Gabby Jay

    Mo Wells in I-formation = NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOooooo…

  31. 31 Vico

    Maurice Wells = the Human Momentum Killer.

  32. 32 Gabby Jay

    Another promising drive, another 1st down handoff in the I-formation to Mo Wells, another drive killer. At least we got 3 points, right?

  33. 33 Vico

    open field tackles, dammit

  34. 34 Vico

    Nader Abdallah?!? Well how ’bout that.

  35. 35 Vico

    Our option game needs a LOT of help. Beanie doesn’t exactly know how to trail the QB and Pryor is too hesitant.

  36. 36 Gabby Jay

    A first down on this drive would be nice.

  37. 37 Gabby Jay

    this is really frustrating. After a while, Terrelle Pryor’s freshman mistakes become, well, mistakes.

  38. 38 Vico

    fucking 4th down conversions

  39. 39 Gabby Jay

    This game is an idiot. Tell this game that I hate it.

  40. 40 Poe McKnoe

    Some Buckeyes games make me want to tear my hair out. This one made me want to tear my eyes out for having had to watch it.

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