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3 Games In - Opinions on Ohio State's Spread Offense?

  • Razorback

    Thought this would be a fun topic.

    Overall, I am really pleased. I think we're seeing what I expected to see.

    * Not firing on all cylinders consistently with the installation of a completely new offense which is expected
    * Only attempted one field goal which I love
    * Aggression in 4th and 1 situations as well as goal line situations -- I love how we execute a plethora of different plays in the red zone -- loved the jump pass against Cal, it was perfectly executed and looked beautiful! The 2 pt conversion was also awesome.
    * Definitely need to improve our running game via the RBs, but as Urban said in his post-game presser on Saturday, he feels like defenses are starting to load us up so we're going to have to start throwing more to get them to back off.
    * I've really enjoyed the up-tempo style. I wish we had done more of that against Cal -- seemed like we were going really slow between snaps which differed greatly from the first two games.

    What have you all thought so far about the offense and where it's headed?

  • I feel like it has done pretty good considering we have only run it for three games so far. 56, 31 and 35 points should be plenty of points to win all of our games. With the personnel we have being geared more towards power football than spread and the fact that we are implementing a completely new offense, I give it a B+ so far. I would like to see more down the field throws trying to get deep. My thoughts at the beginning of the season were, I felt like the offense would struggle and that the defense would have to carry us. So far I was semi-wrong. I think the defense has been less than stellar and the offense has been hit more times than miss. My concern with the offense is the lack of consistency. It almost cost us Saturday with the "holy crap" third quarter. They need to get a couple first downs and prevent our d from being out there so long.

  • I welcome the change and grade it highly when as you put it "firing on all cylinders". Cal game showed that the athletic ability of UCF and Miami did not measure up and we mis-fired against better athletes. Certainly some dropped balls which hurt us and Braxton's last pass showed he is learning to look downfield more. I am interested to see if/when there is a downfield component to the passing game, as well as better use of Jordan via tailor made plays.

    How firm thy friendship O-HI-O

  • The downfield passing game and running game (running game other than BM) are not working.

    I also have concerns about play calling. In the cal game, we completely shut down the offense in the 3rd quarter and ran the same 2 plays over and over again. In the 4th, when we opened up the play calling, the offense started moving again.

    This post was edited by bucksandsurfing 22 months ago

  • Razorback

    lol, I like that "holy crap" third quarter name you gave it. That's definitely what it should be called.

  • yea teams are going to start loading the box and force Braxton to beat them with his arm, we all went through this for 3 years with Pryor. UAB is a good team to practice throwing before MSU who is going to crowd the line of scrimmage.

  • Great points 16

    How firm thy friendship O-HI-O

  • Still a work in progress. Miller is a freak of an athlete and he makes uop a lot for the problems we have. One thing that I don't like is this is more or a finesse offense. We can't move the ball in a power set and I think we will have issues on short yardage situations unless we spread the field and have Miller do his thing.

  • The short yardage issues are already here.

  • I am pretty pleased. Like the play calling. I would prefer more up tempo more often. When we spend more time between snaps things do not progress as well. Considering this is a brand new offense just put in, I expect late in the year things to be more productive. Next year, watch out.

  • We did have a real nice last scoring drive which tells me we're capable of much better play. It'll come, it's the 3rd game of a new era...there were some highs and lows but it's clear how much potential we have from watching those highs. Overall I'm pleased, I think we have some real good players on the team.

  • Proph...how did you enjoy your trip?

  • Aesthetically, I can't stand this offense! Dink and dunk; quarterback sprints up one side, stops, and throws the other way; handoffs in front of the QB; few deep balls; and no power I!

    It saddens me to see USC (until yesterday), Alabama, LSU, Stanford, etc. line up and play the power football we used to play, and win!

    I was also disgusted that the likes of Cal and UCF were more physical than the Buckeyes, and featured better running backs.

    Can we at least line up in the "I" once or twice a game, just for the frumpy old traditionalists?

    I hope this offense continues to gel, and that we put more and points on the board, but I wonder if we'll ever be able to beat physical defenses with undersized "finesse" players. Remember what the Bucks did to Oregon in the Rose Bowl, and what TSUN did to Tebow and Co. in '07?

    We're nowhere close to running the spread as well as either of those losing teams, at least not yet.

    Time will tell, but I miss great running backs, the deep ball, and a big, mean offensive line.

    Go Bucks!

    This post was edited by bleuboy 22 months ago

  • Overall not bad about a B, but I see it may take longer then expected considering what was left for Urban. Not many playmakers and the o-line struggles. Urban has to hit the recruiting trial to get his style of players.

    Defense deserves an F. I seen more confusion and receivers running free last year and this year then I can remember for a long time. The common denominator is Luke Fickell

  • Chad L

    Im happier that a Pig in Sh!t! I think we are way ahead of the game here. Its going to take time, but the up tempo and agressive nature of the offense is refreshing to me. Braxton at any second can disappear for 6. The offense is much more controlled, as far as the no huddle than I thought. To be honest with you, I thought it would be a disaster at times. Im happy with where the O is at and scratching my head with where the D is at. Braxton is getting better all the time and if the receivers can hold on to more balls the wounded ducks that BM occasionally throw should never hurt us. I yelled at the TV for two things this weekend.

    1)For the D- TACKLE THE F-ING GUY!!!!!!!!!!
    2)For the O- KEEP IT BRAX AND TAKE IT TO THE HOUSE!!!!!!!!!!

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    “Look down at me and you see a fool; look up at me and you see a god; look straight at me and you see yourself” Sig pics by jrgdds.

  • Believe me I understand what you are saying.

    In the end....regardless of what kind of offense you are running....defense is always going to be the one who ends up winning the games.....

    But the offense does need to score points. Mark my words....I don't think Oregon will ever win a NC ...not necessarily because of their offense...but because they have yet to figure out that all that offense doesn't amount to squat without a superior defense to boot.

    I'll miss having the 1,000 yard rushing seasons of running backs of our past. Instead you'll see the QB being the leading rusher with this style of offense. It's just different and fresh.....it's fun to see for now....

    But i'm like you and my preference is for a pro-style offense. When executed properly it's very efficient, time consuming, field controlling and difficult to stop. This is football not basketball...any game where you score more than 35-40 points.....I'm not as impressed with our own offense as I am understanding instead that the oppositions defense sucks.

    Honestly....I like watching a QB get crunched for a 10+ yard loss......way more than I enjoy seeing touchdowns.

  • This is the first time in 10 years that I cannot predict plays with 75% accuracy.

    Up tempo and aggressive approach, including some shifts and running guys in motion is an incredibly refreshing change from Tressel-ball. I cannot believe anyone on this website would be pining for a return to those stale and bland schemes.

    Braxton is a year away from mastering the offense and making sure he is on the same page as his running backs and recievers. If he can continue to gain confidence, grow as a leader and stay injury free, he will be the leading heisman candidate going into next season.

  • I really like most of the concepts that Meyer & Herman have tried to implement, but my one big criticism is that they haven't retained anything under center, or out of a power formation. I think with the talent here, lining up behind a fullback and running iso/power downhill to pick up 2 yards would be better than lining up in the 'gun... it'd certainly lessen the pounding Miller is bound to take. To boot, 4th and inches is a hell of a lot easier to pick up with a QB sneak than it is with a QB/HB/FB dive from the gun. IMO, utilize the best of everything, line up under center occasionally and ram the ball down the defense's throat.

    Additionally, I'm still nervous about so much of our offense depending on one guy. I realize that the QB touches the ball on every play, but, I feel that we need to be distributing the ball a bit more to people who can step up and become playmakers.

    Badger Alumni, Lifelong Buckeye.

  • I LOVE not being able to predict the plays like before.....Its definatly not perfect yet.....Miller needs to learn when to hand off and when to run better.....We wont see this offense look like it did at Florida until Meyer gets his guys in here that fit the system perfectly...then.....LOOK THE HELL OUT! Marshall, Zeke, baugh and Jacobs will make a world of difference next year....accompanying the experience gained this year by Smith and Spence....

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  • The spread is not an offense. Its not! Its a formation. Its the same thing as everything else just moves the defense to different positions. I hate hearing about the spread offense. Its the same thing as anything but you are positioning defensive players away from the play. Everybody seems to think the spread means passing every down. Not even close. Its a formation not an offense.

  • Correct.

    I also want to add is the screen plays. We have seen more bubble and jail break screens in 3 games then all of 5 years now. It doesn't look pretty, but I think it's because we haven't run many screens and these kids have no idea how to run it. Just look at Cal and how they ran the screen play. Everytime it was a screen they picked up 8-14 yards. I just hope over time, we will see our screens come together.

  • Offense has pretty much been the strength of this team over the last three games. Urban needs to get his players especially receivers, tight ends and power backs. Need a Trent Richardson/Eddie George hybrid for this OSU team. Buckeyes need an Aaron Herdandez and Percy Harvin type of player. Big time receiver is needed like an A.J. Green or Calvin Johnson type. They don't have that right now. Devin Smith is a #3 receiver who is extremely inconsistent. Buckeyes need a power running back. Hyde is okay. Hall is too small to run between the tackles. Rod Smith aka Mr. Fumbles isn't the right guy to run or to catch the rock. I expected more out of 5 star recruit Brionte Dunn. Mr. Dunn needs to spend less time doing recreational activites and more time spent learning the Buckeye offensive schemes. He had to have known he would have gotten significant playing time this season due to the paucity and overall quality of the running back position. So far offense will improve and it is getting better. Defense is the major weakness!

  • Actually the spread is an offense. I understand what you are saying and yes it does force the defense to adjust to different positions...but make no mistake, the spread is indeed an offense. Much like the power I, the wishbone, the veer.....all are offenses. A player in motion forces the defense to adjust positions too....and all of these "offenses" force a defense to make adjustments.

    The spread offense begins with the quarterback in the shotgun formation most of the time, and often employs a no-huddle approach. The fundamental nature of the spread offense involves spreading the field horizontally using 3, 4, and even 5-receiver sets. Some implementations of the spread also feature wide splits between the offensive linemen.

    But it is an offense.

  • Fair point, but don't you think that if we went from the pistol to a power I formation on short yardage, it would be a dead givaway of what play was coming? We haven't been successful in ramming it down the throat of the defense in decades, very few teams have. This isn't 1975 when we had unlimited scholarships and a fullback who outweighed most defensive linemen. The more men you have in the backfield, the more the defense can put in the box. Why bring the fullback in to block somebody that you could simply take out of the play by making that man cover a receiver lined up outside?

    Short yardage sets that Meyer used led to a TD and a 2-pt. conversion on short, easy passes to wide open Stoneburner. What's wrong with that?
    Keeping the defense off balance and using the athleticism, decision-making ability, and possibility of the QB ad-libbing is what the Meyer offense is all about.

    I do agree that if Braxton goes down, there is no doubt that we are in trouble. Guiton is a quality back-up, but he cannot do the things that Miller can. I was glad to see the number of times Miller ran went down against Cal. It was good he seemed to trust Jordan Hall, but this needs to be extended to the other backs. Use of Dunn and Smith would have helped against Cal as there is some benefit to using a larger back to do some ramming as you say. This could be particularly effective if your opponent is defending against the spread with smaller, quicker and faster players that aren't as well equiped to take on a 225 lb guy with a head of steam. This shouldn't be limited to short yardage though, and they may need to do it without the benefit of a lead fullback blocking for them.

  • Also think about the Oline as well. This is a very new group of guys, which have been playing Ok, but they seem like better pass protectors than run support.

    On the note with if Spread is a formation or offense, I think it's a formation that is used, but people use it so much that it becomes their offense. When you break down the film from Urban's UF days, they ran the same system, and their was a lot of power running. I just don't think that the Oline has the run blocking down to open holes for Jordan and Hyde. The only time that it opens is when Miller does that QB run up the middle for huge runs. That's been pretty much our savior. Now we saw nice option plays to Jordan last week, we just need to get that off tackle or dive up the middle to start to click.

  • You want up tempo - watch the AFA! We don't have up-tempo yet. Then you need to keep defenses off balanced as Meyers did to us in the NC game. There is nothing surprising about this offense - load the box and Brax is done.