Drew Thurman (11:58 pm)
After the Oregon State beatdown in Corvallis (quack, quack), the Buckeyes look like they have a BCS bid in their reach. I like many of you was ecsatic at the chance of another BCS bowl, but I wonder if we have totally put things into perspective. Are the Buckeyes ready for a BCS Bowl?
This '08 team is not battled tested the way I feel they should be. Against the two best teams the Buckeyes played, USC and Penn State, the Buckeyes lost. I understand that there were a lot of things that went wrong against USC, but the team still got embarrassed 35-3. Outside of these two teams, I am not sure the Buckeyes played anyone of national importance. Michigan State and Northwestern were the best the Big Ten had to offer outside of the Nittany Lions, and both have proved that they are products of the Big Ten being down this year.
I am not trying to be negative because I am as big of a Buckeye fan as anyone, but I think it is important to look at the facts. So let's draw some comparisons. Let's predict that the Buckeyes happen to play Texas in the Fiesta Bowl (there are many other situations that could indeed happen), but let us imagine. To me the Longhorns are way more prepared to play in a BCS game, not because of talent or coaching, but because of their schedule. For example, they went through a four week stretch of playing Oklahoma, Missouri, Oklahoma State, and Texas Tech. That to me is battled tested!
Second, the Buckeyes have not been in many nail biters this season. The games against Wisconsin and Penn State are the type of games the Buckeyes could use much more of. In 2002 the Buckeyes had one hard fought battle after another that prepared them for a National Championship victory. That season the Buckeyes had six regular season games they won by 10 points or less. Compare that to this season where the Buckeyes have only won two games by 10 points or less.
I understand that a lot of this is out of Ohio State's hands, but the facts are facts. The Buckeyes got to breeze through a lot of games this season, and this only hurts the team in the long run. This was a similar problem last year, and the Buckeyes ran into an LSU team that was much more prepared due to their schedule.
So where do this leave the Buckeyes? Well, I am not sure I can really be the one to predict. Of course the Buckeyes could come out and look like world beaters, but at this point I still have my reservations. There is nothing wrong with reservatons, and as fans it is important to ask ourselves the tough questions. Questions like:
*Does this team have the offense to play with a top tier team?
*Is this team that much better than the one that lost to USC and PSU?
*Are the Buckeyes being set up for another BCS disaster?
What do you think?