Ohio State Depth Chart: Rutgers

This is getting pretty boring, and that’s probably a good thing. In any case, here’s the latest Ohio State depth chart

What will Rutgers lineup look like? Here’s their offense:

Offense

While on the other side of the ball:

Defense

As usual, you can compare the Buckeyes most recent two-deep to their that from last game.

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Scarlet and Grey vs. Scarlet Knights

Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer previews Saturday’s game against Rutgers. Offensive coordinator Tom Herman talks about how their game plan would be different if Braxton Miller was still their quarterback. And co-defensive coordinator Chris Ash explains why the defense does what they do.



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Get to Know: Rutgers

It’s the Scarlet and Grey against the Scarlet Knights this weekend, the Joey Bosa-led Ohio State defense against quarterback Gary Nova and the Rutgers offense.

In addition to the Bosa-Nova match-up and the inevitable Flood of puns that will result from Saturday’s kick off, what should Buckeye fans expect to see this week?

Rutgers is 5-1, with wins over Washington State, Howard, Navy, Tulane and Michigan, and a loss against Penn State.

Nova threw 5 picks in that 13-10 defeat at the hands of the Nittany Lions. Since then, however, “he has completed 63.5 percent of his passes for 846 yards with seven touchdowns and one interception during a three-game winning streak.”

He’s ranked 31st nationally in passing yards, and his leading target is Leonte Carroo, who has 29 catches for 548 yards (an average of 18.9 yards/reception) and 5 touchdowns. Watch for the Knights to target Carroo on first down, as 51 percent of his catches this year have come on first down plays. Meanwhile, 21 of his 29 catches have resulted in either a Rutgers first down or touchdown.

And the Scarlet Knights are relying even more on the passing game these days, thanks to Paul James’ ACL tear. Even though James has missed the last two games with the knee injury, he still leads the Knights in rushing.

In his absence, Rutgers has only averaged 88 rushing yards a game, 2.9 yards per carry. That’s especially disappointing given what the Knights have up front. They returned all five starting offensive lineman this season, and those players have a combined 153 games under their belt. Plus, the line is only giving up 1.33 sacks a game, which ranks them 26th nationally and third in the Big Ten.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the ball, the team is ranked third nationally when it comes to getting to the opponent’s quarterback. They already have recorded 24 sacks this year.

Like many of Ohio State’s recent opponents, Rutgers has given up yards, although not necessarily points this year. The Scarlet Knights are ranked 70th in total defense (396.7 yards/game) and 42nd in scoring defense (21.7 points/game).

Given the fact that Rutgers has beaten the top-ranked passing offense (Washington State) and second-ranked rushing offense (Navy) this season, those numbers are even more impressive than they might first appear.

However, they aren’t doing this by forcing turnovers. They only have three fumble recoveries and four interceptions thus far.

What they do have is a pair of 6’4″ defensive linemen, David Milewski and Darius Hamilton, who can get into the backfield. Leading the team in tackles is redshirt sophomore linebacker Steve Longa.

Rutgers will present a special teams test, but they don’t present the same challenge as Maryland did, in that their returners aren’t as dangerous, and their kicker Kyle Federico is less of a weapon than Maryland’s Ben Craddock.

But the Knights are the only team in the country to have blocked five kicks this year. In fact, since 2009, Rutgers leads the nation with 39 blocks. They’ve also blocked 2 punts this season.

Rutgers head coach Kyle Flood is 0-4 against ranked teams. Perhaps more importantly, his team’s have tended to fall off later in the year. Although his head-coaching record in the first 6 games of the season is 10-2, his record in the back half of the year (including bowl games) is 5-9.

Ohio State and Rutgers will kick off at 3:30 pm this Saturday on 97.1 The Fan.

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Buckeye Bye-Week Updates

Ohio State is enjoying their second bye-week of the season. However, we were still able to catch up with the head coach, and representatives of the offense and defense, to find out what the Buckeyes are doing during what is only nominally a week off.



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Done Deal

Blue Jackets GM Jarmo Kekalainen took a few moments today to discuss the Ryan Johansen signing with 97.1 The Fan. The deal is for three years, $12 million dollars, and at the end of that time, Johansen will be a restricted free agent.

And here’s what he had to say at the podium when he spoke to the media at-large.

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Ohio State Depth Chart: Maryland

Ohio State released their depth chart for this week, as did the Maryland Terrapins.

As always, you can compare it to the previous week’s two-deep.

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I Don’t Buy It

Michigan coach Brady Hoke on Monday insisted that quarterback Shane Morris had an ankle injury. On Tuesday, he refused to say when he learned Morris had a concussion.

Now athletics director Dave Brandon, as you can see from the tweet above, is insisting Hoke found out about it Monday afternoon.

I don’t buy it, and here’s why:

1) Let’s say we accept the premise put forth in a statement by the Wolverines. Hoke didn’t see the play during which Morris was hit in the head as it happened Saturday. He didn’t even watch the replay as it aired on the video board. Are we also supposed to accept that he didn’t see the play during the course of reviewing game tape Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon? Oh, and he should have known to look for it. He was asked about it after the game.

2) Speaking of that same interview, Hoke can’t claim as his defense that once he did actually witness the play, he assumed trainers had cleared Morris. What he told reporters postgame proves otherwise. “I don’t know if he had a concussion or not, I don’t know that,” he said. So he didn’t know Saturday what medical treatment had taken place, and he was so incurious, once he saw the hit, he didn’t follow-up?

3) And do we believe that Hoke didn’t have any communication with trainers about the concussion before Sunday’s practice? He didn’t receive a written summary of the team’s injury situation from the medical staff? When he was told that Morris couldn’t practice, he may have assumed it was a result of the ankle injury, but he didn’t follow up by asking how long Morris would be out? That question surely would have elicited a response that would indicate a concussion, not the ankle was sidelining him.

4) Someone informed Hoke that the medical staff would be releasing a statement regarding Morris. (We know this because it was Hoke who informed the media a statement was forthcoming.) If Hoke thought there wasn’t a concussion, why did think the statement was necessary? Why didn’t he ask what would be in the statement?

5) Dave Brandon claims to have interviewed everyone involved in the Morris situation before releasing a statement Tuesday morning, but incredulously, that group did not include Hoke?

So, to me, this just doesn’t add up.

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