I am disappointed. I had hoped that Chad Henne would be healthy. He was not. While the first pass left me thinking he might be healthy, a bomb down the west sideline, the next floated pass as quickly proved he was not. The Game continued that way. When Chad threw the ball was high. It was also thrown with virtually no velocity. Chad has a great arm, but there was just no "pop" in the passes.
I am also disappointed that Jake, Henne, Hart, and mostly Lloyd couldn't go out with a win. I really wanted Lloyd to go out with a win. Really. Badly. He deserved it.
In the second half, Chad came out. Mallett came in. There was such a difference in the velocity of the passes, it was really amazing. Mallett has a strong arm, but no stronger then Henne when healthy. Of course, the coaching staff doesn't trust Mallett, nor did I, and I cheered with the rest of section 6 when Chad came back onto the field from the tunnel. (Speaking of tunnel did anyone notice the extended video of the lockerroom to tunnel to field before the game -- pretty cool). While I hoped that the cortizone would help, it didn't.
Of course, neither did superimmatureMario. But, despite superMario's failure's it is doubtful it would have made a difference. Henne's subpar health gave us really no chance. Michigan has been woefully bad at sustaining the run this season. With a gimpy Hart, that ineffectiveness was amplified.
The offensive and defensive lines crushed Michigan. I was a little surprised not to see more of Minor and Brown after it was clear that Hart wasn't 100%. But it would not have mattered without a passing attack. Our line simply couldn't effectively run block. Which is something that will certainly change next year once we abandon the zone blocking scheme. So, next year, I look forward to greater confidence in the run game, particularly short yardage running.
Said and done, the story of the game was told by the offensive and defensive lines. We were pounded. Our sole chance of success in light of that pounding was our passing and outside skill players. Chad wasn't up to the challenge, as you saw.
I give Ron and the D credit. While tofu blew up out defensive line on numerous occasion, we actually held tofu to a respectable yardage and point total. Some of that was due to conservative playcalling (2 passes) some due to the rain, and some due to the D. The only big play of the day was Wells run. A run that could have been stopped without a missed tackle (subject to my review of the replay, it looked like the backer should have had him, or at least slowed him down enough to allow help). So, Ron, I again spare you the spankboard. I also must mention the Englemon interception, which was a nice play and should have set up a score.
Zoltan the Inconceivable. I am buying a shirt for next season.
The Crowd. I stood (with the rest of my section) the ENTIRE game. While we stand a lot in section 6, it is typically only OSU for which we stand the entire game, and stand and clap and yell we did. Even the 3rd and 4th quarters, which all things considered for this game, was pretty damn good.
Line play. Mike Hart. Mario Manningham. Carson Butler penalties. The weather. Uggh.
Ghoston is ugly good. How did we let him get to Colombus. Not good. Oh yeah, and the twelve Buckeyes in the three rows either side of me, really ugly. One dude, who called Zoltan the Inconceivable a "European Gypsy" on 13 separate occasions during the game. Zoltan proceeded to kick a 70 yard punt inside the Buckeye 10 yard line. This guy was wearing 70's style white rimmed glasses with red tinted lenses -- LLLOOOOOOOSSSAAAHHHHH!!!
The coaching staff does not trust Ryan Mallett. He got his head chewed off after the only series he played. By looking at Henne, you know that if they had any faith in Mallett, he would have played. They don't. He didn't. While I hope he can get his head out of his ass because it appears he has all the physical tools to become an exceptional quarterback, I doubt his mental and emotional ability match his physical skills. Steven Threet may be competition next year, which would truly be a shock considering the fanfare with which Mallett entered.
There is a realistic chance that tofu will be in the MNC. They are not that good. They are a shadow of an Oregon team with Dennis Dixon. That said, I would like to see our future coach kick some Buckeye ass in the MNC. Would be nice, wouldn't it.
If Penn State gets taken ahead of us after losing to us and to little brother, there is something seriously wrong. I will boycott the Outback Steakhouse or Capital One if that happens. In the case of Outback, I would actually be kind of bummed because their sirloin, filet, and tuna appetizer are all very good. As for Capital One, not so muc . . . . Wait! I mean I control millions of billions of dollars, capital one. Yeah, and sure, they happen to all be stuck with a foreign bank in Nigeria, but I have a way to get that out if you can just send me a check. Not that San Antonio is all bad -- they really cook some fabulous food down there. And, hey, the odds in are in our favor this time if we need our tight end to do anything other than run out of bounds on the last play of the game. On second thought, our tight end is Caron Butler.
Monday, November 19, 2007