BankBag: Big Ten Season PART-TWO

Ohio State is still ranked number-one in the country as they enter into Big Ten play. How are things in Buckeye Land? Bill Greene answers questions from BSB subscribers.

mrbigbux: Just how much do the Buckeyes miss Heuerman? Last year the jet sweeps seemed more effective with him and Vannett on the field together.

BG: I don't think all that much really, even though he was a heck of a player. Until the QB's play like they did last year, nothing is going to look like last year's offense for Ohio State.

WBURGBUCKI: What Big 10 schools are looking for new coaches at the end of the season?

BG: Well, Rutgers is a mess and I think Kyle Flood is history, even though he's a pretty good coach. Illinois should be, but they just might keep Bill Cubit there if he has a decent season. Randy Edsall is in trouble at Maryland, and I don't see him making it to next season. Iowa gets mentioned a lot lately, but I think Kirk Ferentz and company are going to have a pretty good season, so he should be fine. Would think Purdue will give Hazell one more year to try to get something going. This could be a big year for Kevin Wilson, but he should be safe. The rest are all on good standing, I believe.

ohiostate2002nc: biggest disapointment on the OL ??

BG: A little too soon for that, but I don't think Jacoby Boren and Billy Price are playing at the level they finished last season at. Chase Farris has been decent, so no dropoff from Daryl Baldwin.

ohiostate2002nc: has JT lost some confidence or what do u think is cause of his subpar play so far ??

BG: He definitely looks tentative and scared, two qualities nobody saw out of him last season. I do not think he is 100% healthy, and he's not running well in my opinion. He's not going to be a good gunslinger to come off the bench blazing. He needs all the reps in practice, all the game reps, and all the attention from his position coach to play like he played last season. Unfortunately for him, that's not reality in 2015.

ohiostate2002nc: offensive issues can be attributed to many things (OL, playcalling, execution, etc) ....if u had to list the top 3 reasons we are not firing on all cylinders on offense, pls list them with a quick opinion on fixable or not ??

BG: To me, number-one would be the QB play being average or below average. This is the offensive era, so you need your QB playing great to be a great offense. Second, I would look at the offensive line, because they haven't been as good as they were last season, but were better last weekend. Third, I think the combination of new position coaches and their defined roles within the system hurt a little bit. In short, when Cardale or J.T. start to play like championship QB's, everything else will fall into place.

ohiostate2002nc: Bosa ... to me, the stardom and press has gotten to him and he isnt focused ... assess his play this year ... is he truly a top 3 DE in the country right now ?? will he be by years end?

BG: He's getting a lot of attention from opposing game plans, and rightfully so. I still think he's a heck of a player, and Yes, he's a top-3 defensive end in America. The numbers might not be there this year, but he is still drawing a lot of respect from the opposition. No worries with Joey.

ohiostate2002nc: Eli Apple ....missed some tackles ... several PI penalties ... doesnt see the ball when in the air ... I think he is good .. but not NFL good (yet) ... needs to clean some things up .. lacks moxie and confidence.

BG: Nobody plays a perfect game, and we heard the same things a few years ago about Shazier and Roby, and they both did the 100% correct thing in leaving early. Apple is one heck of a player, and I think you are nitpicking a few things here. In four games, Ohio State has allowed 192, 85, 59 and 158 passing yards. This is the passing era, so those numbers are amazing. Apple draws the toughest wide receiver every week, so he can't be doing all these awful things and still have Ohio State as a Top-10 pass defense overall. I do not agree on Apple at all.

peeblesbuck: Will Gibson make an impact this year?

BG: From all we heard leading up to the Virginia Tech game, it sure seemed like he was on his way. Then he got hurt and that set him back. Still a lot of games left this year if he can get to 100% health.

curt414: Can and will we see Braxton throw from the wildcat? On the Browns if and it seems likely they win 3or4 games does Haslam make more wholesale changes in the front office, head coach? And if he does who would want that dumpster fire position?

BG: Yes on Braxton, and I'm sure they're saving it for a game when they need it. It's coming for sure. As far as the Browns, they just aren't very good offensively, and in that league you need a bigtime QB, which they do not have. Yes, I expect changes at the end of the year if things continue to go poorly. Who would want the job? There are only 32 in the world, so that won't be a problem. Maybe they offer part ownership to Saban or Meyer, and let them write their own ticket? Hiring the next up-and-coming coordinator seems foolish. Haslim has the money to go get a proven winner from somewhere.

woodyl: Will the offense get in gear before the end of the season and attain the level it was at in the last three games last year?

BG: Yes, I think so. Just look at what they did against Virginia Tech in the opener. Those same players are on the field right now. I think they are going to be fine if the QB position starts being great again.

woodyl: Will Urban be successful in recruiting one or more elite DT's in 2016 or will we hafta wait til 2017?

BG: I think they have a great shot at Antwuan Jackson, and recruiting will continue until Signing Day. I saw both Terry Beckner and Christian Wilkins last year at Under Armour, and it was easy to see why they really wanted those two over the two they ended up getting. Beckner and Wilkins are the types of D-tackles missing from the current roster, save for Adolphus Washington.

woodyl: Who, if any, are prime candidates to leave the coaching staff at the end of this year besides Chris Ash? I am assuming Ash will be gone.

BG: I also think Ash is going to be moving on, to a college head coaching job more than likely. But he could also get NFL coordinator looks as well, which would be hard to turn down. Not sure how much longer Tim Hinton and/or Kerry Coombs plan on coaching, but the rest of the staff seems stable to me.

woodyl: What team(s) during the regular season is tOSU most susceptible to lose to. How would you rank them 1-3 as our biggest threats for a loss and why?

BG: I only see Michigan State and Michigan as viable losses, but if they screw around with Penn State or Minnesota, things could be troublesome. I really want to see where Michigan is in another month or so, because they sure look good right now.

WraithBuck: Our playcalling still seems to be very vanilla. There are many plays we could call that will better utilize our speed. Screens, etc. Also, why do we rarely utilize our tight ends as receivers. I know we use them to block and pass protect, but we have had tight ends who could catch very well.

BG: Well, last year Heuerman and Vannett caught 36 passes in 15 games. This year, Vannett has seven in four games, so not much difference. The playcalling has to suit Cardale Jones this year, which eliminates the speed option that J.T. ran so well last year. Also, J.T. completed nearly 65% of his passes last year, where this year they are at 55%, so they're not as efficient, which makes them look pretty vanilla.

daddy34: Bill -- Putting you on the spot 7 months in advance: Give me your best guesstimate on OSU first rounders in the 2016 NFL Draft. And using the same crystal ball, where does Braxton get taken after a season at WR & killing it at the combine.

BG: Very tough to say right now, as you know, and I'm not the best at predicting this NFL draft stuff at all. The first rounders I see are Joey Bosa, Taylor Decker, Ezekiel Elliott and possibly Darron Lee. Braxton needs to show he can play the position consistently, and he's only done that for one game so far. I think he gets drafted, but his round will depend on how well he plays the position. Right now, there's not much to go on.


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