Every week – win or lose – there are players who stand out for the Buckeyes in the three facets of the game. We here at Land0f10, with a little help from readers via social media, will hand out our version of a helmet sticker every Sunday morning to those Buckeyes we feel were the players of the week on offense, defense and special teams.
Despite a 21-point victory over a pretty good Indiana team, there were a number of hiccups for Ohio State on Saturday that will give the Buckeyes coaching staff plenty to work on before next Saturday’s game at Wisconsin. Although there were plenty of coachable moments against the Hoosiers, there were still some shining stars for Ohio State.
Who earned player of the week honors? The staff of Landof10.com – and many of you – have made their choices.
Ben Axelrod – Yes, this was probably one of the three worst passing games of J.T. Barrett‘s career, up there with the 2014 Virginia Tech and 2015 Michigan State games. But unlike those inefficient efforts, the Buckeyes’ still walked away with a win. A big reason why was Barrett’s ability with his legs, as he compiled 137 yards and a touchdown, including multiple drive-sustaining runs. Don’t blame Barrett for Ohio State’s play-calling; give him credit for making the most of it.
Ryan Ginn – He wasn’t used much, but when he was, Curtis Samuel made an impact. Almost all of his carries came in the second quarter when OSU scored 21 points, and he averaged more than 9 yards per carry while also scoring a touchdown.
Jeremy Birmingham – Though he was certainly not his best, J.T. Barrett was still the man with the keys to the Buckeyes offense. And when Ohio State needed a big play, it was the redshirt junior from Wichita Falls, Texas, that made it happen. He ran the ball 26 times for 137 yards and threw a game-sealing touchdown to Dontre Wilson with just under five minutes left in the fourth quarter.
Social media vote – J.T. Barrett
@Birm Samuel. Yards per touch is stupid. They're trying to save him for later
— Nathan Daugherty (@NathanD_17) October 9, 2016
@Birm Barrett was awful throwing the ball today but when a big first down or run was needed he got it. Can't ask for more on a stale day
— Skippy Cox (@Skippy15275) October 9, 2016
@Birm mike Weber he set the tone early in the game
— dylan sampson (@DylanDylan1) October 9, 2016
Ben Axelrod – Even when he’s healthy, I don’t think Dante Booker’s getting his starting spot back. At least not his old one at Will linebacker, where Jerome Baker has excelled in his absence for the past four weeks. On Saturday, the Cleveland native led the Buckeyes with 11 tackles, including seven solo stops and two tackles for loss. On a day that saw Ohio State limit a potent Hoosiers rushing attack to 99 yards, Baker may have just solidified his status as a starter.
Ryan Ginn – Ohio State sophomore Jerome Baker was all over the place on defense, finishing with a team-high 11 tackles and two tackles for loss. His athleticism is a huge weapon for the Buckeyes in the middle of the defense.
Jeremy Birmingham – I’m torn here, because I realize that Jerome Baker played a great game, but I’m going to pick the underdog and give the helmet sticker to Tyquan Lewis. The Buckeyes defensive line was the difference maker on Saturday and held Indiana to 99 yards on 40 carries.
Social media vote – Jerome Baker
@Birm Hooker. Young Ed Reed comparisons are still my fav
— Kent Fagan (@KentFagan) October 9, 2016
@Birm Bosa, started dominating on the line the second half, after the Buckeyes were getting blown off the line. Was key
— Derek (@derek2k3) October 9, 2016
@Birm In person it's amazing the speed of BAKER. And He tackles like a freight train. I think N Bosa had a good one too
— P hulling (@P_Diddle1984) October 9, 2016
Ben Axelrod – Parris Campbell’s big kickoff return at the end of the first half may have been the game’s most important play, but I’m going to give Cam Johnston credit for keeping the Buckeyes on par in the field-position battle. While Indiana’s Joseph Gedeon had a heck of a day in his own right, Johnston stood toe-to-toe with him statistically, edging out the Hoosiers punter with an average of 49.2 yards on six punts. After not having to punt all day against Rutgers a week ago, the Australian senior certainly had plenty to do against the Hoosiers on Saturday. You’d be hard pressed, however, to say Johnston didn’t make the most of his plentiful opportunities.
Ryan Ginn – His kickoff return to the Indiana 5-yard line was one of the biggest plays of the game, and that’s why it’s Parris Campbell. That return allowed Ohio State to answer Indiana’s last-minute score in the first half and sent the Buckeyes to the locker room up by two touchdowns instead of one.
Jeremy Birmingham – I’m also going to pick Parris Campbell, and that’s not because Cam Johnston wasn’t his usual awesome self, because he was. As Ryan alluded to, though, Parris Campbell broke a big one at the end of the first that ripped momentum away from Indiana and gave the Buckeyes a huge score right before the half, made even bigger by the fact that Indiana opened the second half with the ball and scored immediately.
Social media vote – Parris Campbell
@Birm as great as Cam was, has to be Parris. The near TD KR killed any IU momentum.
— Brett Berliner (@brettberliner) October 9, 2016
There you have it, the helmet stickers for Ohio State’s game against Indiana.
- Offense: J.T. Barrett, Curtis Samuel
- Defense: Jerome Baker, Tyquan Lewis
- Special Teams: Parris Campbell, Cam Johnston