We all know the talking points about Ohio State's 40-20 win over Buffalo by this point in time: It could've been better (but it also could've been worse); Jordan Hall did work, etc.; Braxton's mechanics and touch looked much improved, but he maybe didn't show that XBRAX 360 side early and often enough for many of our tastes; Taylor Decker/Armani Reeves are easy targets for criticism; Khalil Mack is really good at this whole football thing. I think that about sums it up, no?
Still, it's easy to forget that in the absence of a preseason in the college ranks, and with a sizable portion of Ohio State's key contributors sidelined with injuries and suspensions, all things considered, it was kind of, sort of, maybe an okay afternoon. There's certainly plenty of room for growth (and the Buckeyes will get that hammered into them over the course of the next week). But on the opposing end of the transition from Week 1 to Week 2 is a team that while schematically frightening on paper, just lost to the #23 team in the FCS ranks by almost the same margin OSU beat UB.
NFL Hall of Fame head coach Bill Parcells famously used to break the long NFL season into four quarters. It went against the conventional wisdom of "taking it one game at a time", but also helped compartmentalize a long grind and kept the players from ever looking too far ahead (it's human nature to think forward no matter how much you're Sabanized otherwise).
Ohio State's one third of the way through the first quarter of their 2013 regular season, and while their overall grade is probably something close to a B- at this juncture, with a San Diego State team coming off one of the worst losses of any team in Week 1 up next and then a Cal team, which while exciting, showcases a true freshman quarterback in an offense their team is still in the process of learning. Baby steps are OK when there's not a juggernaut looming in the shadows.
But that second quarter of the season's degree of difficulty goes from Varsity to Heisman pretty darn quickly. If yesterday's problems are still rearing their ugly heads circa Week 4, every bit of the Chicken Little-ing popular on social media and blogs right now may actually have some merit. But until then, you're certainly entitled to enjoy what did go well.