Friday, September 26, 2008

I Know Nothing

Well, that's not entirely true but when I see Ohio State get BLASTED by USC, then see Penn State manhandle Oregon State and then see Oregon State dominate USC (that game wasn't as close as the score) it leads me to take some aspirin and go to bed and then to rationalize that Penn State is the best team in the nation and will beat OSU by 40.


OK, maybe not.

The Minnesota game on Saturday will tell us, I think, a lot about what Ohio State will really be in 2008. When OSU traveled to USC it was a team that, if you believe the former players who were on the sidelines, had lost its confidence. A team that was waiting for something to go wrong.

It started when OSU marched down the field in the 1st quarter and had the ball 1st and goal at the 5 -- and then proceeded to lose 15 yards and had to kick a FG. For all intents and purposes the game was over right there -- with Ohio State leading 3-0. It was over. The team on the sideline started doubting. "Here we go again," said one of the starters. When Boeckman tossed the TD pass to Robiskie that was called back for a weird holding call (the guy tripped over his own foot)-- it was game, set, match. The team was done.

I know a lot about nothing but I do know that in sports if you lose your confidence - your belief that you can and will win -- you're dead meat. OSU lost that when Chris Wells popped his foot against Youngstown State and Sr. QB Todd Boeckman failed to take command of the team. Without Beanie to lean on, OSU was in serious trouble and USC smelled blood in the water.

But here's the rub. The team that played against USC and thought coming in that it needed to play a perfect game to win has a chance to redeem itself because Wells makes his return this week and Terrelle Pryor is the full time starter at QB. I hate Freshmen QBs. Hate them. They're idiots. It's part of the journey.

But Pryor brings a needed spark and (I hate this word) "swagger"to the team and his 4 TD performance against Troy (who is actually pretty good) turned a lot of heads. He looks effortless on the field -- like Vince Young used to at Texas. If Pryor continues to develop into the star that many feel he will be and Beanie is healthy and gets his Heisman form back -- don't rule Ohio State out.

I know that made some of you throw up in your mouth a little. But don't overlook the Bucks.

IF OSU catches fire with Pryor and Beanie and starts to put away teams like they should -- beating highly ranked teams like Wisky, PSU and Illinois they're going to be right back in the mix and I'll bet you a shiny dime that the media will start to look at OSU different with Pryor calling the shots.

I like OSU's chances more than I do USC's right now mainly because USC plays zero ranked teams the rest of the way. The computer will hate them. OSu even though they lost bad at USC -- they lost EARLY. Big wins against ranked teams will smooth that out a bit -- if in fact that happens. OSU is #13 right now. Think that's out of the question? Know your history, folks.

Of course this brings me back to Minnesota. It's a game OSU should win -- at home -- Beanie back -- Pryor getting more comfy. If OSU wins 21-20 ignore everything I just said. (If they lose...well...that would be like losing to Stanford at home...which will suck)

If they win 31-6 and dominate the game with this new offense -- it could start the train a rollin.

It's still very early and much can happen -- unless you're a Browns fan.

That team is done.