The Wake-Up Call: Golden Hurricane watch, J.T. Barrett as a Baylor Bear and more
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Today is Friday, Sept. 9, and this is your Ohio State Wake-Up Call.
Golden Hurricane watch
If you look at the radar for Saturday’s game, it looks as though a Hurricane is coming through. OK, that was a terrible pun (even though it is expected to rain), but the Tulsa Golden Hurricane are coming to town for a Week 2 matchup against the Buckeyes.
One of the things that Buckeye fans should be aware of before this matchup is Tulsa’s high-powered offense. Under head coach Philip Montgomery, a former offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach for the Baylor Bears, the Golden Hurricane have the ability to score in a hurry. In the first week of the season, Tulsa beat San Jose State, 45-10, while racking up 512 yards of total offense and four touchdowns.
Although you’d expect the “Baylor offense” to be pass-heavy, Tulsa employs a balanced attack. Their running game was a major factor in Week 1, led by junior tailback D’Angelo Brewer, who rushed for 164 yards on 22 carries and had three rushing touchdowns.
When Tulsa is not running, they have trouble protecting their quarterback. Even though he threw for 198 yards and a touchdown, senior quarterback Dane Evans was sacked four times in his 2016 debut against an undermanned San Jose State squad.
On defense, Tulsa limited the Spartans to just 53 rushing yards on 32 attempts. Their defense also scored twice: on a fumble in the end zone and an interception.
As the Buckeyes looks ahead to Week 2, they know that putting up 77 points again will not be an easy task.
“We expect them to be a great team,” wide receiver K.J. Hill said Wednesday. “Going in, they have some great defensive backs. We have been scouting them. I feel like if we go out there and play hard, we should get the job done.”
Will defensive backs be able to guard Mike Thomas in the NFL?
As Mike Thomas says, defensive backs, “can’t guard Mike.”
— Ohio State Football (@OhioStateFB) September 8, 2016
The former Buckeyes standout, a second-round pick in April’s NFL draft, will get a chance Week 1 with the New Orleans Saints to see if that rings true in the NFL.
Thomas was named a starting wide receiver on the Saints prior to their game against the Atlanta Falcons, although that’s not a surprise to Ohio State fans.
In three seasons at Ohio State, Thomas compiled 1,602 receiving yards, 18 touchdown receptions and was a go-to receiver for both Cardale Jones and J.T. Barrett. Now, he hopes to become that player for veteran quarterback Drew Brees.
The 6-foot-3 Thomas did not find many opportunities in the preseason, despite a big preseason opener. Even though he may have not found the ball in the preseason, Saints coach Sean Payton, according to an ESPN article by Mike Triplett, said Thomas is expected to do very well.
“No, I’ve got high expectations for him,” Payton said. “Listen, I think he’s gonna contribute early. I don’t follow fantasy football, but shoot, I’d try to have him. I think he’s gonna do well.”
We will see Sunday if Desmond Trufant and the rest of the Falcons defense can guard Thomas.
Picture J.T. Barrett as a Baylor Bear
As a quarterback from Wichita Falls, Texas, J.T. Barrett garnered interest among state schools, especially from Texas Tech, Baylor and University of Texas.
Tulsa coach Philip Montgomery was the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach for the Baylor team that really tried to sign Barrett.
JT Barrett says Tulsa coach Phillip Montgomery tried to recruit him when Montgomery was at Baylor.
— Lori Schmidt (@LoriSchmidt) September 5, 2016
“I talked to him a couple of times,” Barrett said. “I went to Baylor (on) Junior Day and sat down and talked to them, but it wasn’t – I guess it wasn’t anything bad.”
Even though he did not sign with Baylor, Montgomery, according to an Eleven Warriors article by Tim Shoemaker, still thinks highly of Barrett.
“J.T. is a good player,” Montgomery said. “I recruited him in high school, got a chance to know him a little bit. He’s an exceptional young man and really takes it seriously about being a quarterback.”
When it came down to it, though, Barrett felt as though he wasn’t going to be successful at Baylor.
“It was just where I was thinking about the whole Baylor system, like I really liked their offense,” Barrett said, “but, as far as winning a national championship, that’s all I wanted to do, and I didn’t see that happening at Baylor.”
To be elite you must have much more than raw talent! https://t.co/yYb1plOfnd
— Urban Meyer (@OSUCoachMeyer) June 16, 2016
Good decision, J.T. We thank you for helping bring the national championship trophy back to Columbus.
Women’s basketball back to work
After finishing second in the Big Ten with a record of 15-3 in the Big Ten and a 26-8 record overall, the Buckeyes women’s basketball team is looking to come back with a vengeance in 2016-2017.
Shayla Cooper, a senior forward, said that communication has been a key early on for this team.
— OSU W Basketball (@OhioState_WBB) September 8, 2016
With All-American Kelsey Mitchell and center Alexa Hart returning among a talented and deep team, the Buckeyes are an early favorite to go deep in the NCAA Tournament after losing to No. 7 Tennessee in the Elite Eight last season.
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