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Battles

Discussion in 'Buckeye Football' started by KillerNut, Feb 28, 2004.

  1. The KSB

    The KSB 4-4-11/11-5-11

    I feel Mike would beat out everyone but Kudla. I think Kudla is going to be a killer this year. If Mike wasn't showing signs of progressing then I'd be worried. But IMHO he has been showing continueous improvement since he started. He's getting off blocks better and he's making better decisions. I think by the time he's done at OSU he'll be ready for the NFL.

    btw: LordJeff, I wasn't directing the DE comment at you or anyone in particular. But with the Fox, D'Andrea debates sometimes I get the feeling that people think of DE and Saftey are the booby prize for those that can't make it as a LB or CB. I think they forget that the two biggest impact players OSU has had the last 2 years held those positions.
     
  2. FKAGobucks877

    FKAGobucks877 The Most Power-Drunk

    LB: I personally would also like to see D'animal at DE, but from all accounts, the coaching staff is not even considering this. I think LB is a position that will be sorted out in spring ball. Right now I would say that MD is the fourth LB, behind Schlegel, Hawk, and Carpenter. I've never really watched Schlegel play (outside of the spring game last year), but if even 1/3 of the rumors are true, he will be the starting MLB. He WILL need to beat out D'Animal for it, though. Kerr will be in the mix, but I think there is plenty of work for five LB's at tOSU. Last year we played five, and they all saw plenty of action (Pugac, Hawk, Carpenter, Reynolds, D'Andrea).

    RB: I agree that this is a lock for Ross, as long as he is healthy. Oh8 made a good point when he said that Tressel won't sit a senior (especially one with 3 years experience) for a frosh, and Hall has lost the battle every time he's gone up against Ross (for 3 years now). A great example of Tressel's position in situations like this is the Freddie Pugac. Pugac (I think I'm spelling that right) was at tOSU for 4 years before starting, yet was injured EVERY year. He still started over D'Andrea, even though many would say the talent levels were the same (or even in favor of Mike) and D'Andrea was "the future". Yeah, Ross has had some injuries, but so has Hall--and look at Tressel's history. Ross will be the starting RB.

    QB: I think this is a closer battle than many think, but at this point it is Zwick's job to lose. Smith is a QB, and will remain so while at tOSU. He will back up Zwick, and challenge him for the starting job. Boeckman will redshirt this year, giving him a two year "cushion" between Zwick and Smith, which also leaves Smith as the only other QB available. If you paid attention in 2002, you would know that Smith was actually the #3 QB behind Krenzel and McMullen. In 2003, Zwick moved ahead of him. To me, that means Zwick will be the starter. If you watched the spring game last year, you also know that Smith is one hell of a QB, with an accurate, very powerful cannon for an arm. He will challenge Zwick for both playing time and the starting job, although I do NOT think we will see any type of platooning at the QB position. I would not be surprised to see double-QB sets with both Zwick and Smith in the backfield, and given our RB woes of the past, I would not at all be surprised to see Smith line up at RB every once in while either.

    OL will be the most important battle, both in the spring and fall. We MUST have a better OL to be successful this year. DL will be a battle, but no worries there, the talent is proven. The LB's and secondary will be fantastic. Overall, I really like the D. Maybe not as good as last year, but damn close. And who knows? Maybe better. The offense obviously will be no worse, and the only thing they need to improve is production from the OL, which is a big "IF" at this point. No matter what, I really wish it was September...

    Just my thoughts.
     
  3. ashlandbuck

    ashlandbuck Banned

    Lordjeff

    You describe Fox as "functional".
    I equate functional to "average" and he is certainly above average.
    This kid has spent a lot of time starting for this defense and seems to never get the respect he deserves.
    He's basically been forced to play out of position and still does an outstanding job. I sure would like to see him at a safety position but it seems he will finish his OSU career at CB.
     
  4. BIATCHabutuka

    BIATCHabutuka out of chaos comes playoffs

    i am thinking that smith ans zwick will platoon at least early on still, but if zwick does win the job i don't want to move smith full time to another position. a backup qb is a valuable player on any team. i would like to see us experiment with smith like penn state did with michael robinson though in that case. zwick is big enough that he could flex into a tight end type if they were both in on the same play but i would try like hell to not let a defensive player get a shot at a starting qb pretending to be a tight end on gimmick plays.


    man, i think i contradict myself nearly every other sentence this post, i am in midseason form already.
     
  5. LordJeffBuck

    LordJeffBuck Illuminatus Emeritus Staff Member BP Recruiting Team

    Man, I'm taking a lot of heat on this thread ... re Fox, "functional", "average", "uninspiring", whatever, it's all a matter of semantics. Dustin is a great kid, a good student, a fine ambassador for the program, and is willing to sacrifice personal gain by doing what is best for the team, namely playing out of position at CB. That being said, he is (IMHO) a "middle-of-the-road" Big Ten CB, and not in the same league with many of OSU's recents CB's (Springs, Winfield, Plummer, Clements, Gamble, or even Ty Howard). He usually does a nice job, gives effort on every down, makes a big playhere and there, and gets burned every so often, which is about what I expect from a starting CB. His overall play doesn't hurt the team, but he's not a difference-maker, either. In sum, he's "functional".
     
  6. Oh8ch

    Oh8ch Cognoscente of Omphaloskepsis Staff Member

    Don't mean to be piling on in regards to Fox - and you are certainly not alone in your skepticism - but Dantonio made a comment near the end of last season that in over 1,000 defensive plays Fox had NEVER let his man get behind him. He also said he was one of the surest tacklers on the team.

    I think DB is one of the hardest positions for the 'average fan' to evaluate. Not saying you are average - but I certainly am (or at least middle of the road as far as Big Ten fans go :) ). We see catches being made and make assumptions about what happened without knowing anything about assignments on a particular play. Other than Illinois in '02 (when he was injured) and the occasional missed tackle I have a hard time pointing to Dustin and saying here is where he screwed up. I can point to instances where projected early draft pick Chris Gamble screwed up. Fully agree Fox is not one of the top 3 CBs to come out of OSU in the past 10 years - but there is a lot of room between that group and 'middle of the road'.
     
  7. BuckNutty

    BuckNutty Hear The Drummer Get Wicked Staff Member Bookie

    Well said.

    I also wonder how much the scheme plays a role in Fox giving up the plays he does. I recall he played pretty darn well in the Purdue game, a day where he was in press coverage a good deal. He was solid in the scUM game the last two years. Played well in both Fiesta Bowls and other than the Illinois game of 2002 I don't recall him ever having a really bad day, and that was a game he played hurt. He may not be an All American candidate but middle of the road seems a little harsh. I still have yet to figure out why so many people are down on him. Maybe I'm missing something.
     
  8. LordJeffBuck

    LordJeffBuck Illuminatus Emeritus Staff Member BP Recruiting Team

    Hey, I hope that Dustin proves me wrong and has a great year in 2004 as one of the leaders of the Buckeye defense - I'd be more than happy to admit my mistake.

    BTW, I am not a Fox "basher", I was just trying to be objective. I really like Dustin - he seems like a great kid.
     
  9. FKAGobucks877

    FKAGobucks877 The Most Power-Drunk

    Don't take the abuse personally, LordJeff, a lot of this stems from the negativity that a lot of people seem to have towards Fox. Many posters here feel that Fox has been getting a bad rap for quite a while on these boards, so they are quick to defend him. Having said that, I'll go ahead and jump on his bandwagon (actually I've been there for a while), because I really feel he's way above average. He is fast, an excellent tackler, and does everything that is asked of him and more. He's gotten some PI calls against him this last year, but half of them were BS, and even if they weren't, I have no problem trading a TD for a 15 yard penalty. The other knock against him is that he seems to give up a lot of 3rd down catches (resulting in first downs for the opponent), but judging from his coaches comments, this is a result of the scheme and his assignment in that scheme, not his ability. I think he'll be the #1 CB this year, and will surprise all of his doubters.
     
  10. BuckNutty

    BuckNutty Hear The Drummer Get Wicked Staff Member Bookie

    No worries, LJB. Although I disagree with your assessment your opinion is your opinion. I'm pretty sure that's allowed here :wink:
     
  11. KillerNut

    KillerNut Banned

    More of my thoughts

    First I really don't think the TE will be much of a battle, Izzary has had off the field problems, Hamby has been a very solid contributor to the program, is, as of the end of last season, a better blocker, and had great hands. I actually thought he should have started ahead of Hartsook last season.

    Second I agree that at this point I think quietly it is Zwick's job to loose. I think the coaches have leaked just enough info to make that pretty clear.

    Fox is one of the most horrible starting CBs we have ever had at Ohio State since John Cooper's 1st Big Ten Championship. The only worse CB's I can think of are Cie Grant (playing out of position just as Fox has been no matter what people think), and was it Bobby Britton who had to quit due to injury? Those are the only two I can think of. He absolutely SUCKS at covering WR, or even a talented RB/TE. He is a good Tackler, Fast, and a big hitter, Sounds like a safety to me? If he doesn't move, we will lose a game because of his poor CB play this season.

    On the RB situation, I think that a rotation of Ross/Joe is likely to start the season, and I think Hall will be a 3rd back with limited time. This will have a lot to do with the blocking in pass protection situations. Early to mid in the Big Ten season Hall will disappear, Joe will move back to a Matt Keller like FB position, and one of the two freshman (my vote would be Haw) will take over as the featured back after a big game against a weak opponet. Also it will be interesting to see what happens to the talent level of our backs if we have a line that is willing to get nasty and block some people.

    As far as the D goes I think we are looking at a case of too much talent, a very good problem to have. It will be interesting to see what happens, but I don't worry about that as much. The biggest loss may be Dantonio, but we shall see.
     
  12. bucknut11

    bucknut11 Defense still wins Championships

    killer, that's pretty harsh on Fox. i certainly wouldn't say he's "horrible." here's hopin' he proves all the doubters wrong this year...
     
  13. buckiprof

    buckiprof 21st Century Buckeye Man Staff Member

    killer - I too think that was a little too harsh on Fox. But I do agree with you on one point. Fox would make a helluva safety. However, I also thought Steve Bellisari would have made a helluva safety :)
     
  14. FKAGobucks877

    FKAGobucks877 The Most Power-Drunk

    Fox is going to have a banner year at CB. What exactly does the guy have to do to prove his worth to you people? Look at his stat's, watch the game, and listen to his coaches (all of them) praise the kid for his performance. I'll match any bet on the table that Fox doesn't lose us a game this year, so put your money where your mouth is.

    Aside from that, Ross is the starting TB, and will be unless he gets injured. Period. Write it down, take a picture, do whatever you have to do. Remember how good Ross ran as a frosh when he was playing behind Wells? 129 yards against IU (at IU), then relegated to junk time after that. Tressel plays his seniors, period. Haw and/or Pittman and/or Kennedy will see time this year, but only to get them some real experience for next year. At least one or two of those incoming frosh will be red-shirted, unless injury forces them to play by necessity.
     
  15. 3yardsandacloud

    3yardsandacloud Administrator Emeritus

    FKA, I believe the new correct phrase would be: "They are painting the endzones even as we speak!" :biggrin:
     

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