Night Games: Get ready to stay up late as Ohio State will be playing three night games in 2012. The Department of Athletics has announced that the Buckeyes will appear on prime time television a trio of times in the month of October:
October 6 – Ohio State will host Nebraska at 8 p.m. in a game that will be televised on ABC, ESPN or ESPN2. The game will be Ohio State’s Homecoming and it will be the Cornhusker’s first visit to Columbus since playing at Ohio Stadium in 1956.
October 13 – Ohio State’s road game at Indiana in Memorial Stadium will be at 8 p.m. on the Big Ten Network. I wonder if the late night will keep OSU fan's from overtaking the stadium as usual.
October 27 – Ohio State’s game against Penn State in State College will be a 6 p.m. start with either ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 broadcasting the contest.
Although night games are good in the sense of attracting a national audience I hate them, because it means nervously waiting all day for kickoff. Oh well, the B1G didn't ask my opinion!
Just a couple thoughts on the Spring Game, which Ohio State won! Urban Meyer starts his career at tOSU with a win, while Luke Fickell’s Gray Squad lost another heartbreaker.
Offensively, the passing game looked pretty good, for April. Of course that’s all we saw, since Urban & Co. kept the running game under wraps for most of the day. Both QB’s looked like gamers and Michael Williams appears to be emerging as a playmaker that Urban needs. Hard to get a read on the offensive line play since a) it was a split squad game and b) play calling was pass-heavy, so they were playing in pass-block mode most of the afternoon.
Defensively, it was also hard to get a good read, other than the line is talented and deep, the linebackers are talented and shallow, and the backs, although needing some work, can make plays. Overall, I was satisfied with what I saw.
Regarding special teams, I thought that Drew (back it up another 5 yards) Basil performed well, while under a critical eye.
It was also quite the recruiting weekend for the Buckeyes, wasn’t it? They landed a top notch defensive lineman in Joey Bosa as well as two athletic linebackers in Alex Anzalone and Lewis Neal. Maybe because OSU had to play a QB at LB in the Spring Game indicated to Anzalone and Neal that they have good chances of getting on the field next year.
Hoops Recruiting: It has not been a productive year for Thad Matta, who has cut his teeth in coaching as a big time attractor of talent. The weekend did provide an up tick when swingman Amedeo Della Ville committed to Ohio State. He brings a nice skill set to the Buckeyes, and Ken sees him as a cross between Jon Diebler and David Lighty. We can only hope!
Unfortunately, All-Everything front court player Tony Parker decided to shun his home town school, Georgia, as well as Ohio State, to sign with the UCLA Bruins. Despite acknowledging that Columbus is a good place for a "big man", it appears that he was looking for a challenge. The Bruin basketball program is such a mess, it will be a test for him. Nonetheless, we wish him well.
Which brings us to transfer Anthony Gill. Not for long, though, since he decided to transfer to Virginia.
So, the Buckeyes still have three scholarships available, and we’ll have to see who Thad can line up to fill out the squad.
Running the Ball: Although Urban Meyer and Tom Herman want to pass the ball more in 2012, it looks like OSU will be loaded at running back. If Jordan Hall, Carlos Hyde, Rod Smith, and Bri'onte Dunn aren't enough, consider that incoming freshman Warren Ball is receiving rave reviews from the Ohio North-South Classic. Ball, who was used more as a pass receiver than a runner (fitting I guess) was named the South Offensive MVP, and players and coaches both had great things to say about him. You have to feel good about the backfield for the next few years.