COLUMBUS, Ohio — Do you have got a query that you simply’d wish to have answered in Hey, Buckeye Discuss? Grow to be an Ohio State textual content subscriber right here or by texting us at 614-350-3315 for a two-week free trial. Nathan Baird and Doug Lesmerises will reply an OSU soccer query every single day for textual content subscribers, after which share one of the best of these solutions right here twice per week.
Hey, Buckeye Discuss: “I used to be listening to the AP ballot pod on my stroll, and also you guys talked about how unhealthy Oklahoma quarterback Spencer Rattler was to start with of final season. I’m undecided it’ll occur for our first-year starter, but it surely’s a chance whoever the starter is has a tough begin. If the starter has a Spencer Rattler-like begin to the season, how quickly does Ryan Day make a change, or do you assume he would? I don’t assume Oklahoma had the expertise to make a change, however we clearly do.” — Subscriber in Northeast Ohio
Hey S.N.O, it’s Nathan: There are some vital variations on this comparability. Rattler didn’t face the identical wide-open competitors for Oklahoma’s 2020 beginning job. It was all the time his to lose. Second, you might be right — the Sooners didn’t have some other reputable possibility behind the redshirt freshman.
So when Rattler struggled out of the gates, Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley needed to journey out the storm together with his subsequent gifted younger prodigy. Rattler threw three interceptions in a house loss to Kansas State within the second sport of the season. He seemed fairly odd in opposition to Texas two video games later, although the Sooners received in 4 overtimes.
But you additionally anticipate to take the unhealthy with the nice with a younger first-time starter. After that Kansas State mess, Rattler threw solely 4 extra interceptions in 236 makes an attempt over the remainder of the season. He completed the season with a 172.6 quarterback effectivity score. That was good for eleventh nationally, one spot behind a quarterback you might have heard of — Justin Fields (175.6).
If I mentioned whoever wins the OSU quarterback job this fall will put up effectivity numbers to rival Fields, most followers would gladly take that. As we noticed final yr with Fields, although, even veteran quarterbacks typically expertise ups and downs en path to statistical excellence.
Ohio State’s new starter doesn’t catch a lot of a break on the early schedule. A mid-week evening sport to open the season, adopted by a house sport in opposition to potential top-10 opponent Oregon, is a a lot more durable 1-2 than Fields expertise in 2019.
I’ve beforehand mentioned it would make sense for OSU to work in a second quarterback through the first halves of early video games, so if and when a real backup is required that participant has extra actual sport expertise.
But Day additionally should give whoever he anoints because the starter the room to fail early on. Jack Miller, C.J. Stroud or Kyle McCord would wish to start out off a lot worse than Rattler did in 2020 to warrant a benching. That flip-flopping would hurt the boldness of each the quarterbacks and sure the whole roster.
Hey, Buckeye Discuss: “Summer time of 2019 we talked quite a bit about find out how to decide the success of Ryan Day. How would you establish his success now, for 2021? The place would you draw the road for “underwhelming”? Playoff semifinal loss? New 12 months’s Six bowl loss? Huge Ten championship sport loss? I neglect what phrase we used, however what would pop the Ryan Day bubble?” — Evan in Oregon
Hey Evan, it’s Nathan: Two playoff appearances in two years has set a excessive normal for Day — although actually no decrease than he would have set the bar himself. To completely reply your query, although, we have to introduce some nuance.
When you had informed Ohio State followers previous to the 2019 season that Alabama wouldn’t make the playoff and Fields can be a Heisman Trophy finalist, then most would have assumed OSU a minimum of made the nationwide championship sport. Clearly that was earlier than we knew about Joe Burrow placing up online game numbers, Fields’ late-season knee damage and a few questionable calls within the playoff semifinal in opposition to Clemson.
Identical with 2020. Popping out of that Fiesta Bowl loss, many thought of Ohio State a nationwide championship favourite. Then got here COVID-19, with penalties that affected the roster all over the nationwide championship sport.
Which is one other approach of claiming every thing else I’m about to say could be adversely affected by the surprising.
We shouldn’t have any proof another person is able to dethrone Ohio State as Huge Ten champion. It will likely be favored in each common season sport it performs — even that journey to Indiana, even when the Hoosiers are additionally undefeated at that time. Failing to win the East can be underwhelming.
The potential Huge Ten championship matchup is extra intriguing, as Doug lately wrote about in one other Hey, Buckeye Discuss. Northwestern and Wisconsin each enter the season with the potential to hit a house run at quarterback. When was the final time OSU performed a sport in Lucas Oil Stadium when it needed to absolutely respect an opponent’s offense?
But the expertise steadiness will nonetheless tip within the Buckeyes’ favor in that sport, and the taking part in circumstances ought to once more favor their talent and velocity edge. Not making the playoff with this roster — even with reputable questions on protection — can be “underwhelming.”
After that, all bets are off. The playoff matchups are largely out of a group’s management, each when it comes to opponent and seeding.
Hey, Buckeye Discuss: “How a lot credit score does Corey Dennis get in QB improvement for the three potential guys contemplating Day was with Fields all final yr and separated Fields from the others for COVID protocol?” — Subscriber in Cincinnati
Hey Cincy, it’s Nathan: A very honest query since we spent a lot time lately on Ryan Day’s QB whisperer identification.
You may argue Dennis is in one thing of a no-win scenario underneath Day. If the quarterback competitors yields a star in 2021, who will get the credit score? The coach with established credentials for turning first-year starters into stars or the coach beneath him? However, if issues go sideways, how a lot blame will land on the perceived nepotism rent in his first full-time job?
That is what Dennis signed up for, although. If Ohio State’s quarterback play underwhelms over the subsequent few seasons, he’ll take the blame.
However, he already will get some credit score for serving to touchdown Quinn Ewers based mostly on the connection he constructed there. And if CJ Stroud, Kyle McCord and Jack Miller all look sharp in no matter position they play this fall, a fair proportion of the credit score should go to Dennis as nicely.
Fields’ Bears jersey: Ohio State soccer followers can buy Justin Fields’ new Chicago Bears jersey right here. It’s out there in white, blue and orange – and in males’s, ladies’s and youth sizes. There’s additionally a less expensive T-shirt possibility.
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