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The No. 2 Ohio State Buckeyes (9-0, 6-0) are heading into the final quarter of their regular season today as they host the Indiana Hoosiers (3-6, 1-5) at 12 noon ET at Ohio Stadium. Coming off of last week’s wind-swept contest against Northwestern, the home team is looking to get their offense back in gear before heading off to Maryland next Saturday.
So, we wanted to check in with Buckeye Nation to see how they felt about last week’s game, TTUN, and the score of today’s contest against IU
Question 1: On a scale of 1-10, how concerned were you after the win over Northwestern?
The answers to this question perfectly show the duality of Ohio State fans. Some are always going to be incredibly confident, and yet some are always going to be incredibly worried. I included a few descriptions in the original question.
On the scale, I defined 3 as “A bit, but the whole game was weird.” So, more than one-quarter of the Buckeye fan respondents were only moderately concerned about the ineffective play against the Wildcats in Evanston last weekend.
Conversely, 38% selected 8 on the scale, which was defined as “Passing issues were the wind, but no run game or run D is a problem.” To me, this seems fairly understandable, if not a little over-reactionary. The passing game is not a problem for the Buckeyes, so I think you can essentially dismiss any concerns about that. But, OSU’s inability to get consistent push from the offensive line in the running game could be a problem moving forward, especially if Day’s play calling doesn’t adjust to the fact that they are not a power-run team, even if they wish they were.
Personally, I probably would have gone with 5, which I had clocked as “I am an OSU fan; I am always half worried, half over-confident.” To me, that is, in a nutshell (pun intended) the essence of being a Buckeye.
Question 2: What best describes your feelings about The Game?
First off, nice! Secondly, I think this is the obvious answer here. I don’t know how any objective fan can look at Ohio State and think that they will absolutely dominate their rivals in two weeks’ time. However, I also don’t know that it is reasonable to say that the Skunk Bears “terrify” me, aside from have residual post-traumatic stress from defeats of decades past.
I do think that it is reasonable to have watched the Corn and Blue this season and thought that they might be overhyped. Like the Buckeyes, the Harboys have been uneven through nine games; struggling at times with lesser-talented teams before pouring turning it on. However, they are undoubtedly one of the best teams in the country, and they will pose an obvious challenge for Ohio State in the regular season finale.
Therefore, having watched the Buckeyes continue to struggle with the things that the Mitten Men took advantage of in last year’s version of The Game, I think that it is fair and conscientious for all OSU fans to think that their favorite team needs to get some things figured out before Thanksgiving weekend.
I still have faith that Day and company can do it, and the Buckeyes might be able to out-talent the Weasels even if they can’t, but if Ohio State wants to truly contend for the national title, they will need to figure out a way to be able to run effectively and efficiently, even in obvious running situations.
Question 3: What do you think the outcome of Saturday’s game against Indiana will be?
In our How to Watch article, I predicted 55-10 in favor of the Scarlet and Gray, so I suppose that I fall in with the 20% of y’all that said 40 or more. I do have a tendency to see these game predictions through scarlet and gray-colored glasses, so perhaps, you should shave a few points from my pick, but Indiana essentially can’t stop the pass, and Ohio State’s passing attack essentially can’t be stopped.
So, I’ll lay the points and take the Buckeyes to cover the 40.5-point spread (and no, I am not putting any money on that).