Bank Blog: Quick Thoughts Offense

Ohio State capped an undefeated season by defeating Michigan 26-21 Saturday in Columbus. The offense appeared unstoppable early, but went nowhere in the second half? Who stood out offensively?

- Was this a great offensive showing against Michigan? Absolutely not, and they left a ton of points out on the field. It was definitely a tale of two halves for Ohio State, but this is the sign of a great team, and as they did all year, when the offense needed to score, they scored. And YES, this is without a doubt a great team. Regardless of the conference, the schedule or how pretty it might have looked, if you go undefeated today in college football in the regular season, you are a GREAT team. It's a shame there isn't an excellent BCS Bowl as a reward, but that's another story for another day.

- And now you see why Urban Meyer is at/near the top of his profession, and why the College Football Hall of Fame is his ultimate destination in the sport. When you combine his recruiting skill, his game-day coaching prowess, and his ability to recognize and hire great assistant coaches, it's pretty obvious that Ohio State has an unbelievably bright future under Meyer. It's tough to envision too many, if any, "down" seasons at Ohio State on the horizon. The 2012 season was probably as challenging as any Meyer faced in his coaching career, especially with all the changes he brought to how Ohio State would go about their business on a daily basis, and he went undefeated.

- Braxton Miller through the ball accurately and made great decisions in the first half, and with Michigan taking his running away he needed a good day passing the football. He did appear tentative in the pocket at times, and took too many sacks, but seeing him throw the football well bodes well for the future. The hope is that next year he is more quarterback, and less runningback. He will be a Heisman Trophy favorite heading into next season, and he made great strides over last year's performance.

- As we saw last week, it still seems like Carlos Hyde did not get the ball enough, especially with Michigan totally scheming to take Braxton Miller's running away. Which they did. Even though Hyde ended up with 26 carries, it seems like there should have been 8-10 more. And if Hyde needed a break, Rod Smith has proven to be a capable power runner. Carlos Hyde's improvement has been as dramatic as one could imagine this year, and he is twice the player he was last year when he was pretty darned good. And Hyde gets no cheap yards either, so to average over five yards per carry against this tough Michigan defense says a lot. He now makes people miss, when in the past all he could do was run people over. He came up real big in this game and deserves all the props that come his way.

- Philly Brown had the muffed punt, but was a big threat in the passing game. In the past few years, Philly was known for dropping footballs, but that problem was corrected through hard work and he has had a great season. Devin Smith got deep once again, and that has been missing lately. Smith will need to work hard in the off-season on becoming a more rounded receiver, but he has the skills to be a great player. These two should be ultra-productive next season as the passing game improves.

- Weird day for the offensive line, as they opened holes for the running game, but seemed lost in pass protection against the Michigan blitz packages. They played physical and moved bodies running the football, but a Michigan team that wasn't very successful sacking quarterbacks this year had great success attacking Miller in the pocket. Overall, this unit grades out very high for how they played as a unit this season. Hard to believe not one starter went down with an injury for any extended period of time.

- Meyer definitely brought flash and dash to the offense, but what was interesting is how many times Ohio State played "Tressel-ball" in so many hard-fought wins. Seems fitting that on a day when the former head coach was honored, that Ohio State rallied to beat Michigan with two second half field goals, reliable punting, and pitching a second half shutout. Tressel-ball, indeed.

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