When J.T. Barrett left Saturday’s game with an injury to his knee, we at The Hangout in the Holy Land feared the worst. Just last week against Illinois, backup quarterback Dwayne Haskins came in with Ohio State up 38-0, and promptly fumbled. Urban Meyer was not pleased:
Urban Meyer, on why he put his starters back in after Haskins fumble and Illinois defensive TD: "I was pissed...I didn't want it to turn into a clown show"— Matt McCoy (@MattMcCoyZone) November 19, 2017
The performance left us convinced that Ohio State would be in big trouble if Haskins needed to play against a stout Michigan defense. Boy, were we wrong.
Patrick Mayhorn and I kicked off the show talking about the bizarre injury to Barrett (1:55), and another awful first quarter for Ohio State (3:10). From the playcalling, to linebackers being out of position again, plus lots of Barrett runs, this one felt like the Iowa game all over, and was teetering on the edge of getting out of hand.
It almost did in the second quarter with Josh Metellus’ near interception in the redzone (7:10). This was arguably the turning point of the game, and that whole sequence —which ended in Barrett’s 21-yard touchdown scramble— was indicative of the Buckeyes staying in the game —and ultimately winning— in spite of themselves (10:20).
As the discussion shifted toward the second half, we lauded Haskins performance, and discussed why we were so impressed with his command of the offense (14:50). It was more than needed, as the defense constantly looked on the verge of giving up a huge play, even though they only gave up six second-half points (20:50)
We also looked back at two of the biggest plays you may have forgotten about: First, John O’Korn’s trip on second-and-one, which ultimately led to a Michigan turnover on downs (23:20), and the third-and-one handoff to Mike Weber late in the game that was stopped for a loss of three, leading to Sean Nuerenberger’s missed field goal (26:10). Safe to say that if UM would have won, we’d be talking about that play a bit more this week.
To close out the show, we discussed Ohio State’s resiliency (28:50), having a mental edge over Michigan (31:30), and previewed the Big Ten Championship versus Wisconsin (38:05).