"Everyone who asks about Adolphus, I always tell them I think he's going to have a ridiculous first half of the season until they find out who he is. Because they know about me on the interior and they're going to try to double team me or shut me down, and Adolphus is going to rip them apart with a single team."
- Michael Bennett, via Matt Brown, Sports on Earth
Were you looking for some Kool Aid? Because Michael Bennett has a big pitcher full. In Matt Brown's (not ours) piece on Urban's Buckeyes in his third season, Bennett offers some sterling praise of Adolphus, who was one of the most heralded defensive line recruits, but now is often forgotten when hyping up the line in season preview articles.
Brown's hype for the Buckeyes doesn't stop with the defensive line. Here's another line: "While a lot can go wrong and nothing is guaranteed, no team outside of Florida State has a better chance of putting the pieces together and going undefeated. Few coaches are better equipped to solve the puzzle than Meyer." You have to admit, it kind of makes you want to run through a wall to read that.
In case you needed anything more to get excited, Bovada has released new Vegas odds, with the money flowing in for the Buckeyes to win the B1G. Ohio State is now the favorite at 10-to-11.
"There are some really strong coordinators who will one day make successful head coaches...Picking just one is really difficult. But the assistant I hear most about is Tom Herman -- the offensive coordinator at Ohio State."
- Travis Haney, ESPN ($)
Sorry to link to a paywalled article, but this is a topic worth discussing nonetheless. Urban made a deal with his new assistants when he first got to Ohio State that none of them would pursue other opportunities for at least two years. Thankfully, we've got Tom Herman for at least three - but who knows if that could change after this season?
According to the preview in Haney's piece, he hears the most about Herman making the move to a head coaching position - even over the likes of Kirby Smart or Pat Narduzzi. While that's high praise for this MENSA member, it also could be a huge blow to this smash mouth-spread offense that Herman and Meyer have constructed over the past two seasons. It absolutely makes me wonder whether the offense's success last season (and wow was it successful using any and every advanced metric available) was due to Herman, Meyer, the offensive line, Braxton, or even Hyde? I'd love to hear some others' thoughts.
"A petition, addressed to President Drake & OSU Board of Trustees, has also been circulating from change.org that has more than 10,500 e-signatures as of 10 a.m. Aug. 5. Those who have signed say say the decision to terminate Waters was 'a miscalculated overreaction, and [we] urge you to reconsider.'"
- Amanda Harnocz, Cleveland.com
So we've all been reading and hearing about the controversy surrounding Ohio State band director Jon Waters' firing. Today he took to The Today Show to defend himself and his efforts to eliminate the offensive and sexualized culture of the ban.
However, Ohio State also fired back a retort today as well. Ohio State spokesperson Gary Lewis noted that any of the accusations would be enough to dire Waters and he did nothing to inform or consult with the appropriate school officials. Additionally, the school accused Waters of not being forthcoming during the investigation.
"Speed and playing well are two different things. It could be the fastest defense overall...Are they as smart as last year? They may be as fast or faster. But are they as smart, are they as physical, are they as seasoned? We don't know that. Probably not."
- MSU Defensive Coordinator Pat Narduzzi on MSU's Defense, via Detroit Free Press
In this roller coaster of a news day, we now turn to the rest of the Big Ten as season previews keep flowing in. First, from MSU's Media Day, Narduzzi notes that this could be the fastest defense he's ever coached...but what isn't making the headlines is what he says next. The Spartan defensive coordinator then suggests that while the current eleven are likely physically superior to his previous groups, it's absolutely unclear whether they are as experienced or smart as his Rose Bowl champions of the past. And that's great news for Ohio State fans, who can probably relate to that sentiment.
Turning to Madison, the Badgers have themselves a QB competition. Frankly, I thought the incumbant, Joel Stave, had it all locked up, but it looks like his challenger Tanner Mcevoy is giving him a challenge.
Finally, it really has become a do-or-die year for Brady Hoke. Rickman's preview notes the sub-par 7-6 season, lopsided rivalry with the Buckeyes, and losses to the Spartans as key reasons for his hot seat. I actually think anything over 7-6 will give him another year, mostly because of his Michigan Man status.
STICK TO SPORTS
- It's a good time to be a craft brewery (sidenote: go buy some Terrapin, my hometown brewery!).
- For all you Office (UK) fans - Ricky Gervais is back!
- Get ready for some new Star Wars - wait what is this?
- It's probably aliens, so let's just stay away, right?