Helwagen Chat: Oct. 3 Archive

No, there is no Ohio State game today. But you can stay current on everything concerning the Buckeyes and the Big Ten by clicking on this free link and reading the archive of Friday's Chat session with Bucknuts.com managing editor Steve Helwagen. He conducts these Chat sessions each Friday at 1 p.m. for Bucknuts.com subscribers. A bonus Chat has been tentatively set for 9:30 p.m. Monday as well.

Here is the archive of Friday's Chat session with Bucknuts.com managing editor Steve Helwagen. He conducts these Chat sessions each Friday for Bucknuts.com premium subscribers. Gary Housteau also hosts a weekly session each Thursday at 1 p.m.

This week, Helwagen has tentatively scheduled an evening chat for 9:30 p.m. Monday night. Here is the archive from Friday:

Craig Krenzel Is My Dad (Oct 3, 2003 9:56:45 AM)
Well Ill ask the first question,k but lets wait for others before a response, hows the running back situation, i thought lydell was gonna have a breakout year but he seems to stay injured. maurice hall has been missing the holes and is slow to hit them. Are there any big time prospects out of state we may get or is our best luck to take ray from benedictine, and do you think tressel will offer

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:02:02 AM)
CKIMD, for those who didn't see the question, asked about the RB situation. Here is my take: Lydell Ross is the one guy they can not afford to lose for any more appreciable time. Problem is he seems to get dinged up at the drop of a hat. When healthy, Ross is the closest thing they have to an impact TB. Hall has not shone, but part of it is scheme and blocking. Why keep sending him into the middle? Because they wouldn't think you'd run him there? I don't know. I don't see OSU offering Ray Williams. Too small and some grade problems, I believe. Could be wrong, but I'm not sure they'll be after him.

BuckeyeDave (Oct 3, 2003 10:00:43 AM)
I've been frustrated with Coach tressel's "platooning" of RBs. It seems to me that we need to get one in the game and let him run 22-27 times. Do that on a consistent basis and I'm sure we'll see that RB picking up 130-140 per game. My guess is that Coach Tressel wants to do that but feels that Hall isn't the right man for that scenario and Ross isn't healthy enough.

Craig Krenzel Is My Dad (Oct 3, 2003 10:01:30 AM)
i agree, lydell worked way to hard and got stronger in the off season for him to be playing this lousey, hes the man but he keeps getting hurt

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:02:47 AM)
BuckeyeDave, you're right. Ross would be the guy if he can ever start and finish a game. He had a real good game against BGSU (except for the fumble).

BuckeyeDave (Oct 3, 2003 10:03:17 AM)
What about the O-Line? Why aren't they punching gaping holes? Too many injuries? Defenses putting 8 in the box? If defenses are putting 8 in the box, would short out passes and pitches or sweeps tend to fix that?

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:04:42 AM)
In the games I reviewed, I saw isolated breakdowns. One play it would be Bishop, next play Olivea and so on. They just haven't been consistent. I think Tressel, in calling plays, has overestimated the effectiveness of his line. I agree, they needed to do more to get the ball out on the edge quicker.

Craig Krenzel Is My Dad (Oct 3, 2003 10:04:30 AM)
What big out of state RBs are the buckeyes in on or is it most likey gonna be the Haw/Pittman combo

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:06:57 AM)
Charlie Jones from Miami and Darius Walker from Georgia are two guys I think they have offered, but I wonder if both will be long shots. Not sure what direction they will go, but I think they need at least 3. Ross and Hall are gone after next year. I doubt Clarett will ever play another down there and Guilford is supposed to be a DB. You need to build the numbers back up.

BuckeyeDave (Oct 3, 2003 10:05:46 AM)
Bring back Joe Montgomery or Vaughn Broadnax!

Craig Krenzel Is My Dad (Oct 3, 2003 10:06:50 AM)
maybe they could pull clarke and make a nice sweep out of it, that would be an option that outside lbs would never think of, pulling clarke...getting back brandon joe also should help

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:08:02 AM)
CKIMD, I agree, Clarke has been their best lineman to date with Stepanovich dinged up. But even on some plays where I've seen him pull, he gets to the spot he's supposed to be at and doesn't hit anybody. Definitely having Joe back in there will help.

BuckeyeBK (Oct 3, 2003 10:08:06 AM)
Steve, what are you hearing about Malik Hairston? Are we going to get him or is MSU going to? (I don't think UM gets him with Crawford, who will probably re-commit). Any shot at Holford?

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:10:27 AM)
No news seems to be good news, I guess. LaMonta Stone is working him as hard as he possibly can. If they don't get him it won't be for lack of effort. I guess they have a chance to get back in on Horford. I understand Amaker begged him not to de-commit and the dad may want him to look at Billy Donovan (Quin Snyder of the south) at Florida.

Craig Krenzel Is My Dad (Oct 3, 2003 10:10:44 AM)
Hey Kirk, I remember saying before the season I thought Will Allen could be All American,, you thought all conference; looks like we both might be right. Will could make it 2nd string A.A. and only behind Sean Taylor

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:11:41 AM)
CKIMD, I agree, I think Allen and Hawk are their best award candidates at present. I would Hawk to the discussion of guys they can ill afford to lose to injury, along with Ross.

Kirk (Oct 3, 2003 10:12:37 AM)
Will is certainly making noise with all his big plays. I definitely agree with Steve on Hawk too, and I think his stock will just continue to rise as he puts up similar numbers in some of these upcoming big games

BuckeyeBK (Oct 3, 2003 10:13:31 AM)
In your guys opinion, which three LBs start next year? (I am guessing Hawk, Schlegal, and Carpenter, although I realize happens from now till then).

Craig Krenzel Is My Dad (Oct 3, 2003 10:14:06 AM)
hawk, schlegal and either kerr or deandrea

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:15:45 AM)
BuckeyeBK, Hawk and Carpenter seem like definites to me. I didn't see as much out of Schlegal as everybody else. Real good battle it will be. I bet Snyder rotates those five guys (these 3 and D'Andrea and Kerr) and constantly changes the lineup. But Hawk is the constant, no doubt.

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:14:13 AM)
As a side note, anybody who thought they were going to watch Wisconsin on ESPN tomorrow will be sad to hear the Yankees playoff game will be on instead. They are bumping all early Big Ten games to ESPN-Plus. In Cols., they say we're still getting crappy IU-MSU, for some stupid reason. Don't they want people to watch? At least I can pay per view Wisconsin. I would get outraged if I wanted to make a stink about having to pay for the game and getting the fifth-best Big Ten game for free.

BuckeyeBK (Oct 3, 2003 10:18:33 AM)
Steve, I really like the idea of having more chats at night. Obviously I am able to today because I am off work, but I can't get through at work (proxy) and I really enjoy speaking to you and the others. Your chats on BSB were one of the best things about that site, along with Gary.. smile!

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:19:02 AM)
BuckeyeBK, tentatively we will do one like this at 9:30 p.m. Monday night.

Craig Krenzel Is My Dad (Oct 3, 2003 10:20:20 AM)
yeah monday night might work better for others, but i can't complain, i m getting all my questions answered

Craig Krenzel Is My Dad (Oct 3, 2003 10:18:43 AM)
How has Santonio Holmes been, I thought he was gonna be seeing alot more action. Don't get me wrong I think Drew Carter needs to stay in there since he can strecth a defence with his speed and maybe pull the Free Safety or nickel along with him down the field, but he seems to have the dropsies some and santonio i thought was gonna be able to do the same thing

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:22:40 AM)
CKIMD, I believe Holmes fumbled twice already this year (or that one at N.C. State only felt like 2 ... VBG). Plus, he got dinged up in one of the games. He will be fine. He made a great play in the N.C. State game off the goal line. As much as I hate to say it, he should field every punt in a "non-threatening" situation. That's the only way he'll get better and break himself of the fumbles.

BuckeyeBK (Oct 3, 2003 10:21:53 AM)
Steve.. what is the "buzz" around the basketball team? I saw that various publications have us all over the board (have we ever been thought of highly recently), but, do you think we are going to have the year that most of us expect, if not more?

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:24:25 AM)
BuckeyeBK, I don't know the exact rotation but Athlon, Lindy's and Street & Smith's had them 5th, 6th and 7th. Waiting on The Sporting News book. I don't think they're giving Sullinger and Stockman, 2 proven double digit scorers, their due. The whole house of cards depends on keeping Dials, BFC and others healthy. No missed games would be great after last year's disaster.

buckeye ron (Oct 3, 2003 10:23:40 AM)
Steve, trying to get my arms around the buckeyes offenese. With Step. back in the fold, do you see Mangold holding at center, what else will JT do to muster up any kind of production from this offense?

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:26:46 AM)
buckeye ron, I think Mangold definitely has to play. I did a mock rotation. I had Mangold and Step almost splitting time at center with Step playing the other 50 percent of the time at guard. Then Bishop will sit some, maybe 30 percent of the time, and Clarke will move out to tackle at times. Kne also has to play.

Craig Krenzel Is My Dad (Oct 3, 2003 10:26:23 AM)
What has Dwane Long been up to lately, does he have anything new to say about some recruits??? Just cruious like everyone else is...

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:27:35 AM)
CKIMD, Duane is still working dilligently on calling coaches and recruits.

worthabuck (Oct 3, 2003 10:28:37 AM)
Steve, a couple of weeks ago we talked about Tressel using the plain vanilla offense the first weeks, then putting in more of the offense as we hit the Big Ten season. Against BGSU we saw running outside, last week we saw the tight end, and Irizarry down the sidelines. The biggest difference last week to me though was the decrease in penalties and turnovers. The D was never put in bad situations, the O was manageable and kicking was good as usual. That being said, I expect some new wrinkles to be brought out for Wisconsin. Any thoughts on what might be next?

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:31:21 AM)
worthabuck, I don't have a clue, but it better involve moving the chains and scoring points. Hopefully, Krenzel will be at or near 100 percent, so he can execute a wide array of throws. If I was setting up a defense to stop OSU, it would be predicated on shutting down Ross and make a rusty Krenzel try and beat me. For him to do that, he's going to need the full arsenal -- screens, swing passes, underneath stuff, intermediate stuff and deep stuff.

BuckeyeBK (Oct 3, 2003 10:28:39 AM)
Is our next football verbal Davis, or someone else? Anyone we get that "the experts" think we have no real shot at?

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:34:47 AM)
BuckeyeBK, I think the next verbal will be a complete surprise, somebody they've evaluated and fallen in love with, offered and he verbals. It will happen quickly. No, I don't think Davis is imminent. I agree with Gary that it will happen eventually, just not until Dec. likely. Not sure about somebody the experts don't think they'll get.

buckeye ron (Oct 3, 2003 10:30:36 AM)
On the recruiting front , Steve do you still felll Ginn is a so called "lock" as much as one can be with out giving a verbal. And is the hold up to get the other glennville kids exposure, or is their some question on him going elsewhere?

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:35:40 AM)
buckeye ron, I also agree with Gary that Ginn will be coming to OSU. I think, yes, they want the kids to get the exposure and he would like to make some visits.

Craig Krenzel Is My Dad (Oct 3, 2003 10:31:12 AM)
ginn is a lock, he wants to take his trips and also prepare for the olympic trials

worthabuck (Oct 3, 2003 10:34:55 AM)
It wouldn't surprise me, if Craig is having a good week of practice, to have him try a deep pass to Gamble on the first play. Even have him try to overthrow him on purpose, to get some of those thoughts out of Wisconsin's head.

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:37:23 AM)
worthabuck, not a bad idea. I liked when they did that against Washington.

stemmshady (Oct 3, 2003 10:35:32 AM)
Steve, a couple early questions. 1) What can you tell us about Jack Rafferty, I hear he is putting up tremendous numbers? 2) What about Brandon Smith, I think is his name, from Euclid, I saw him on ONN a week ago or so and he looked absolutely unstoppable. Finally, on a much different topic, does it seem to you that Hairston likely ends up a Michigan, the fact that he added them so late in the recruiting process worries me, and whats the latest about Horford now?

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:39:39 AM)
stemmshady, Rafferty is having a great year as the QB at Coffman, running, throwing and directing the offense. Not sure how big he is or if any I-A schools have offered. Euclid's Smith keeps coming to OSU home games. Maybe he gets a late season offer. Hairston could definitely sign with UM. That is a clear and present danger. My people say UM definitely did not drop Horford. He dropped them for some reason. Florida is suddenly involved ... ahem.

buckeye ron (Oct 3, 2003 10:38:25 AM)
I am not a coach, but what seems to be abundantly clear is that all teams are going to going to stack 8-9 in the box, to negate OSU's run. Obviously to this point in the season that has worked last in rushing offense 106 th nationally in total offense. Why not go to the spread, use slants, swings, bottleg to the tight end to keep, and use stretch the field vertically with a post, to get teams to back off/ JT continues these tight I formations and power O plays that everyone in the stands know thats what is coming. So the question is does he really believe this is the best strategy to play it 3 and out punt and play defense and field position?

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:42:08 AM)
buckeye ron, well, I know he doesn't want to go 3-and-out. But I agree, I think if you assessed OSU's formations and play calling there would be some definite patterns. How many hundred times have they run the QB draw out 5 wides, shotgun, empty backfield? Granted, it has worked and even Scotty Mac got a big gain with it last week. But you can almost guess when it's coming. They need to run out of pass formations (haven't seen that much) and pass out of run formations (usually the play action or bootleg stuff they run).

Craig Krenzel Is My Dad (Oct 3, 2003 10:39:55 AM)
put jenkins, holmes or gamble plus hartsock on one side, leave heartsock as a decoy and have him pick up a block, but carter on the other side an let him burn them one on one, its not a tressel play but it could work very well, if they blitz hartsock could drift out a couple yards for a 7-8 yard pickup

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:43:04 AM)
CKIMD, the QB just needs lots of options to outlet the ball because you know the pressure will be coming.

stemmshady (Oct 3, 2003 10:46:30 AM)
Steve, do you expect Guilford to get some carries at Wisky?, how about Troy Smith, seems he could be a huge weapon as a slash.

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:49:03 AM)
stemmshady, no, I don't think you'll see much of Guilford unless Ross gets dinged, they get up 7-10 points and have good field position. This is Jim Tressel football: you win the absolute surest way. Putting a freshman in a big night road game to carry the ball, particularly in a tight game, ain't winning the surest way. As for Smith, I want to see the cannon. He brings the fastball regardless of the count. Let him throw.

DADDYBLUES (Oct 3, 2003 10:49:24 AM)
What notable players do you see being left in Columbus when the team travels to Wisconsin? The travel team number does somewhat limit who you can bring. i.e. do you think Troy Smith will make the travel squad? (among others)

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 10:53:52 AM)
DADDYBLUES, I'm not sure what Tressel was getting at when he went on that soliloqy about the traveling team. I can't imagine why they wouldn't take Troy Smith. Usually, you take all of the available QBs. The main reason is so those young guys get a taste for how you prepare for a big road game and they get a feel for the atmosphere before they have to go to a place like that next year and win. There are like 80 or 81 scholarship players. The 10 guys who are redshirting would be a start on who isn't going. I imagine some of the older guys who are 3rd team or worst won't be going. Maybe some redshirt freshmen who don't figure to play (Coleman, Downing, Roberts). I'm sure they have a handle on who they need to take and who they don't.

stemmshady (Oct 3, 2003 10:58:29 AM)
Steve, do you think Minnesota is in fact a really good team or is Penn State really that bad? Do you think it is time for Paterno to move on?

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 11:00:57 AM)
I picked Penn State over Wisconsin, for some wacky reason. The stats show that Wisconsin should trample PSU's bad rushing defense. But I think those stats are also a product of PSU having played Nebraska and Kent State, which run almost exclusively. PSU just doesn't have the star power it needs to compete with the big boys. They've taken their eye off the ball and missed out on and just plain missed on too many kids. Yes, it is time for Paterno to go. I am a big fan of JoePa's, having interviewed him several times. He is the game's grand old man and it would be too bad if he can't go out on his own terms. But they've really just been treading water for the last 6-7 years.

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 11:05:24 AM)
i definitely plan on being camped for 7 hours for PSU-Wisconsin and Iowa-Michigan. As I said, I picked PSU to finally sack up and win. Then, I picked UM to get revenge for last year's terrible loss in the Big House. They are simply better.

CFAbuckeye (Oct 3, 2003 11:07:17 AM)
Steve, how concerned are you about Iowa? Don't they have a bye week before they play us. For me, they might be our biggest challege before Michigan.

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 11:08:45 AM)
Yes, giving Ferentz and his crack staff 2 weeks isn't good. But I think this game at Wisconsin and the later home game with Purdue (just before UM) are going to be tougher than that home game with Iowa. Just my opinion. I think Purdue is better than Iowa, Purdue is more of a complete team. I'm not sold on Chandler and the Iowa offense against good competition.

SteveHelwagen (Oct 3, 2003 11:17:55 AM)
Thanks everybody for participating. Remember tentative Chat for Monday at 9:30 p.m. Turn on the game and fire up the computer. See you then.


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