“Ohio State’s issue is clear. But if Meyer stays, there’s little Ohio State needs to change. Michigan’s issue is cloudier. As Harbaugh stays, he should wonder how he could possibly afford not to change.”
- Doug Lesmerises, Cleveland.com
If there was ever going to be a chance for Jim Harbaugh to finally get the monkey off his back and beat Urban Meyer, this was the year. Michigan entered last Saturday’s game with a stout defense, a well-balanced offensive attack, and the momentum heading into their final “Revenge Tour” game against Ohio State. Instead, the Buckeyes proceeded to walk over the No. 4 team in the country, winning 62-39 in a game that never really felt all that close.
Before that, there were plenty of questions about Meyer’s future at Ohio State in part due to his health, but also the bizarre season the Buckeyes have had since his return. Now those questions have fallen away as Ohio State prepares to face Northwestern in the Big Ten championship. Harbaugh, meanwhile, has some explaining to after failing to beat his biggest rival yet again.
“Haskins is doing things this season that no quarterback in the Big Ten has ever accomplished before at the quarterback position.”
- Stephen Means, Cleveland.com
From the start of the season, everyone got to see what Dwayne Haskins was capable of. It was clear he could contend for the Heisman Trophy this season. Now, after another magnificent performance in which he threw for nearly 400 yards and six touchdowns against the No. 1 defense (statistically) in the country, Haskins is yet again in the thick of the Heisman race. While Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa and Oklahoma’s Kyler Murray have been leading the way over the past several weeks, Haskins still should be considered.
This season, Haskins has thrown for 4,003 yards and 41 touchdowns. That’s coming at basically a completion percentage of 69, with only 7 interceptions to his name. That gives Haskins the most yards AND touchdowns of the three, and only a slightly worse completion percentage. Tagovailoa does have the advantage of having an undefeated team while Murray and Haskins both sit at one loss this season. At the very least, Haskins should be invited to New York as a finalist for the award.
“No team improved its playoff position more during Rivalry Week than Ohio State, upending the committee’s No. 4 team with ease, but was the offensive clinic against the nation’s No. 1 defense enough to leapfrog Oklahoma? If not, just how close are the Buckeyes?”
- Heather Dinich, ESPN
It was only a matter of time before the possibility of a controversy popped up in the College Football Playoff. Four spots are open, but it appears Alabama, Clemson, and Notre Dame have all locked in their spots for the top three (should the Crimson Tide and Tigers remain undefeated). The final spot did belong to Michigan, but after a loss to Ohio State, the committee will have its hands full with deciding who gets in. Georgia is currently sitting fifth, but they play Alabama in the SEC championship game.
That leaves Oklahoma, currently sixth, and Ohio State, sitting at seventh. Central Florida also is on the outside looking in with an undefeated record, but it’s obvious at this point that they won’t make it in unless some more chaos happens. So Sooners or Buckeyes? Both sit at one loss apiece, and the strength of schedule is pretty similar. Both play conference championship games, so it might come down to who impresses in those games. Regardless of which team makes it, they’ll likely face Alabama in the national semifinal game.
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