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Today is Tuesday, Sept. 13, and this is your Ohio State Wake-Up Call.
Defense ready for fast-paced Oklahoma offense
The numbers for Ohio State’s defense so far in 2016 are completely bonkers, if we’re being honest. In two games against Tulsa and Bowling Green, the Buckeyes defense has allowed just one field goal in each game. Bowling Green’s lone touchdown in the 77-10 beatdown came on a J.T. Barrett interception that was returned for a touchdown.
So technically, the Buckeye defense has only allowed six points in their first two games to two Top 15 offenses from a year ago. Turnovers galore and big stops like the one below also have been giving the Ohio State offense great field position and momentum so far in two games.
— Lantern TV (@LanternTV) September 10, 2016
You may be thinking that it’s only been Bowling Green and Tulsa and that those games mean nothing heading into a showdown with Oklahoma. The truth is, you may be right. Those games mean nothing compared to what quarterback Baker Mayfield and the Oklahoma offense can bring to the table. The Sooners offense is one of the best in the country, and they can test you on the ground and in the air.
However, Buckeyes defensive end Sam Hubbard thinks the Buckeyes’ first two games actually have helped them prepare for what comes Saturday night in Norman, Okla.
“Getting the tempo that Tulsa threw at us — and Bowling Green even, really — prepared us because they are going to do tempo, too,” Hubbard said. “All good teams do tempo just like our offense does tempo. Especially for the young guys to get the field for how fast things are going to go in this big game, it was really good to have that under our belt.”
With a defense that has given up only 216 offensive yards per game so far going up against an electric Big 12 offense, the matchup should be a big test for both sides. The defense does have a game plan in place.
“We have to stop the run first to even get an opportunity at their quarterback, so we are going to focus on stopping the run and making them throw the ball,” Hubbard said. “Once they throw the ball, that’s when we will get after them. We just have to play fast, tire them out, wear them out.”
This game is far more than a top 15 matchup, though. Ohio State linebacker Raekwon McMillan said this game may affect the future of this program.
“It’s definitely another opportunity for us to show what Ohio State really is, not only for our university and the college playoff system, but also to recruits we’re trying to get to come here to Ohio State,” McMillan said. “The expectation every year is to win the national championship and the Big Ten championship.”
Familiar face gives Buckeyes tips
With a 33-23 win against Oklahoma in Week 1, former Ohio State offensive coordinator and current Houston head coach Tom Herman has a unique perspective on how to beat a Sooner team that is regarded as one of the best in the nation. So with that unique perspective to give, Ohio State coach Urban Meyer said he did reach out to Herman before next week’s contest in Norman.
“We did talk to Tom,” Meyer said. “Just got their thoughts on personnel, because you see what you see on videotape. It was more about personnel because they have a couple of new players as well in the back end of their defense, and what’s their thoughts on the defensive line. Schematically, not as much because we get the same videotape that they have. It was more about their personnel.”
This may be shocking to some because of the Cougars’ likely chances to make the College Football Playoff at the end of the year. However, Herman is still a trustworthy voice to many people in the Ohio State football program.
Ohio State QB J.T. Barrett says he'll speak to Tom Herman on the phone tonight. "(Herman) is not a FaceTime guy." pic.twitter.com/dorEZTOJR3
— Tim Shoemaker (@TimShoemaker) September 12, 2016
“Me and coach Herman, we talk on Monday nights, kind of just to see how he’s doing,” Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett said Monday. “I know he’s getting up there with the top dogs now as a head coach, but I call him and my high school coach on Mondays, and I’m going to talk to him tonight. I’m pretty sure he’ll tell me a little something about Oklahoma, but when we talk, it’s more about just how you’re doing in life, not football.”
Barrett and the rest of the Buckeyes will take anything to give him an advantage taking on No. 14 Oklahoma on the road.
In other non-football related Buckeye news
After becoming the Buckeyes’ new women’s hockey coach, Nadine Muzerall already has added a new face to her coaching staff. Jess Koizumi, a former assistant coach at Yale, has been named the associate head coach for the women’s hockey team.
— Ohio State W Hockey (@OhioState_WHKY) September 12, 2016
After an impressive hockey career in the National Women’s Hockey League and at Yale, Koizumi is excited to extend her career in Columbus.
“I am a big believer that everything happens for a reason and this incredible coaching opportunity at the Ohio State University just felt right,” Koizumi said, “My time had come to hang up my skates and wear my permanent coaching hat.”
Muzerall is excited for a new face in the locker room as well as her perspective from being in professional hockey.
“She has an immense amount of experience as a player and coach, and I couldn’t be happier to bring her to Ohio State,” Muzerall said. “She is the complete package and she wants to help build this program.”
The Buckeyes will start their season in Troy, N.Y. on Sept. 30th, where they will face Rensselaer Tech.
Another day, another weird Harbaugh story
Another day in the books, another news conference for Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh. This one is pretty self-explanatory.
The message is good, but he puts it in a creepy way that Harbaugh does so well.
So Freddy P. Soft is the one who told him to pick his nose, though the Khaki Kook says it was definitely, absolutely, certainly, not a pick.
Jim Harbaugh: It was not a pick. With analysis and obligatory "Seinfeld" reference. https://t.co/0MfYt8t4GN
— Rachel Lenzi (@RLenziCMG) September 12, 2016
Big Ten Injury Report | Iowa Depth Chart released for Saturday | Harbaugh is pretty humble, not| Indiana already focused on basketball | Michigan State’s logo best part about their program | How will Coach Meyer prepare for Oklahoma?