It’s an unofficial bye week for Ohio State as it travels to Maryland to play a not-so-good team.
Under normal circumstances it would be a trap game as a game at Michigan State looms. But Sparty is horrible so there is little chance the Buckeyes won’t be focused on the turtles.
And since the College Football Playoff committee did a complete 180 from week one to two of the ratings (taking a one-loss team with a good resume over an undefeated team, then taking that same undefeated team over a one-loss Ohio State team with a good resume), the Buckeyes will be looking for some serious style points.
I see a serious beatdown coming.
What else do we want to see?
A convincing win: Let’s thrash the Terps. No offense. But lets put 70 on them.
A shutout: Why the heck not?
Health: No major injuries.
Let them play: Get the backups some quality minutes.
Rest the wounded: Don’t risk losing the workhorse Mike Weber. If the shoulder is a problem let him sit this one out unless absolutely necessary. Demario McCall has earned the opportunity and this will be a good chance to see what he does early in a ballgame.
Keep the momentum: Don’t let up; whatever was firing on Saturday keep it. It’s got a lot more to do with execution and preparation hasn’t been a problem. Play calling has been suspect but so has execution. Keep the hammer down and leave little doubt.
Silver Bullet statement (again): Let the rest of the world know just how stingy this defense is. Not only are they not giving up rushing TDs but they are the best secondary in the country and continue to keep teams from be able to go over the top for big plays.
Tempo: I want to see tempo early. Get the offense moving the way they want to be moving. I’m OK with getting way out and slowing down a little, but I still want to see some sense of urgency.
Build on last weekend: There were a lot of things that went right last weekend. I want to see that continue. Trusting teammates, making smart decisions with the ball, gang tackles … I want to see it all.
Beat Michigan: I mentioned it in the game preview, but this is OSU’s first chance to face a team coming off a beatdown by Michigan the week before, and I want to return the favor to the former Michigan assistant coach, and beat him by at least one more point than UM did to Ash and Rutgers. In other words, I want a statement game in the B1G.
Continued offensive improvement: Dominate on both the offensive and defensive lines. With William Likely out for Maryland, Noah Brown should be a major target. Mike Weber should pass the 1,000 yard mark this game J.T. Barrett should pass Drew Brees for B1G all time TDs accounted for in the next three games. Feed Curtis Samuel the ball.
Keep the foot on the gas pedal: Start off quick and fast. Don’t play conservative. Build up a momentum to carry into East Lansing. Feature Curtis Samuel and K.J. Hill in the passing game. Dominate the line on both sides of the ball. I want to see wide holes for Mike Weber/Demario McCall to run through. I want to see the defensive line live in the backfield, pressuring their quarterback on every single play.
More playing time for the younger players: Weber has no reason to play more than the first half. Get McCall plenty of touches. I want to see Ben Victor and Austin Mack gaining experience.