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Buckeye Bracket: Top OSU plays of the decade - D/ST Region

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You the fans can help us vote on the best Ohio State play of the decade until we crown a national champion!

Michigan v Ohio State Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

With everything in the sporting world shut down for likely the next few months, it gives us some time to reminisce on all the good times we’ve shared as Ohio State fans. While watching Buckeye football highlights to try and pass the self-quarantine boredom, it got me thinking: What is the best OSU play of the last decade?

Obviously, there is a nearly boundless amount of great plays from guys in Scarlet and Gray in the last 10 years, so it is hard to single out just one. That’s why I’m not doing it alone. Since there is no NCAA Tournament to fulfill our March Madness needs, we here at LGHL have put together a bracket of the 32 best plays in the last decade of Ohio State football, which you the fan will be able to vote on in the coming weeks as we look to crown a champion.

The bracket will be broken up into four regions, with the winner of each region competing in the Final Four before a championship matchup between the top two plays, as voted on by you guys. The regions are as follows: quarterback plays, running back plays, wide receiver plays, and defense/special teams plays.

We began with the quarterback region, and have continued with both the running back region and the wide receiver region. Today, we will move on to the defense and special teams region. Of course, with so many big plays in recent history, some may have gotten left out. We tried to focus on those that were the most flashy/came in the biggest games.

Voting for the first round will end this Saturday, with the second and third rounds continuing next week. Let’s get to debating!


Defense/Special Teams Region

Here’s how this region of the bracket shapes up. Now let’s get into the matchups.


No. 1 Seed (Hooker’s pick-six vs. Michigan) vs. No. 8 Seed (Hooker’s INT vs. Bowling Green)

Malik Hooker was one of the more electric defensive players to ever don the Scarlet and Gray. While he was a starter for just one season, he made the most of it as the safety was a walking highlight reel. The No. 1 vs. No. 8 matchups pits him against himself. In the 2016 edition of the Michigan game, Hooker got the Buckeyes on the board first with a pick-six, completely changing the complexion of the afternoon, and Ohio State would go on to win in double-OT. Against Bowling Green that same season, Hooker hauled in one of many spectacular interceptions, this one by tipping the ball to himself with one hand before snagging it with the other.

Poll

Who ya got?

This poll is closed

  • 73%
    No. 1: Hooker pick-six vs. Michigan
    (98 votes)
  • 26%
    No. 8: Hooker INT vs. Bowling Green
    (36 votes)
134 votes total Vote Now

No. 2 Seed (Miller’s pick-six vs. Alabama) vs. No. 7 Seed (Young’s tackle vs. Wisconsin)

Defensive lineman dream! Another memorable play from Ohio State’s 2015 Sugar Bowl victory over Alabama, Crimson Tide QB Blake Sims just straight up doesn’t see DE Steve Miller who dropped back into coverage off the edge. He throws the ball right into his hands, the D-lineman is able to rumble his way down the sideline for a huge touchdown that more or less put away the game. Our No. 7 seed may have been able to sneak in here because of recency bias, but it is still an awesome play by Chase Young. After cutting inside, the DE has the speed and athleticism to cut back and keep up with one of the best running backs in college football as he is able to hold Jonathan Taylor short on 4th-and-2 in the Big Ten Championship.

Poll

Who ya got?

This poll is closed

  • 96%
    No. 2: Miller pick-six vs. Alabama
    (126 votes)
  • 3%
    No. 7: Young tackle vs. Wisconsin
    (5 votes)
131 votes total Vote Now

No. 3 Seed (Olave’s punt block vs. Michigan) vs. No. 6 Seed (Young’s tackle vs. Penn State)

Man there really is just no better feeling than beating up on Michigan, am I right? Chris Olave came out of nowhere in 2018 to shred the Wolverines with a pair of receiving touchdowns, but his work on special teams provided the biggest highlight. His blocked punt was returned by Sevyn Banks for a Buckeye TD, and Ohio State would go on to dismantle UM 62-39. The opponent is again Chase Young wreaking havoc. I can’t imagine running directly at the best defensive player in the country on fourth down is a good idea, but I guess they never learn *Bosa Shrug*.

Poll

Who ya got?

This poll is closed

  • 68%
    No. 3: Olave punt block vs. Michigan
    (90 votes)
  • 31%
    No. 6: Young tackle vs. Penn State
    (42 votes)
132 votes total Vote Now

No. 4 Seed (Bosa’s sack vs. Penn State) vs. No. 5 Seed (Powell’s INT vs. Michigan)

A strong matchup of middle seeds in this region. Joey Bosa absolutely dominated Penn State on this one, driving a way-overmatched running back into Christian Hackenberg on fourth down to win the game for Ohio State in double-OT back in 2014. His challenger is a No. 5 seed that has a chance to make some real noise, as Tyvis Powell’s interception on Michigan’s two-point conversion attempt won the game for the Buckeyes in 2013. Powell gets the added bonus of his play turning Devin Gardner into a meme and, as always, sad Wolverine faces.

Poll

Who ya got?

This poll is closed

  • 59%
    No. 4: Bosa sack vs. Penn State
    (78 votes)
  • 40%
    No. 5: Powell INT vs. Michigan
    (54 votes)
132 votes total Vote Now

Make sure to cast your vote for your favorite Ohio State defense/special teams play of the last decade. The winner of each region will advance to the Final Four as we continue our quest to crown the Buckeyes’ best.

Just a heads up — the polls occasionally don’t load from the Twitter mobile browser, but show up fine when accessing from the regular mobile browser or a desktop.