Grading The Defense: Ohio State

Istockbreadstuffing2maiam8_medium

Beanie's favorite meal.

It's been well-documented already, but the amount of holding by Ohio State's offensive line was beyond comical.  Aaron Maybin was held practically all night, and the interior linemen didn't fare much better.  We're talking blatant stuff here -- grabbing fistfuls of jerseys and whipping defensive linemen to the ground.  It was happening in the very plain view of multiple officials, and guess what?  Not one holding flag against Ohio State all night.  Sometimes, it truly does feel like 11 vs. 18 on the field in this conference.

Need an unbiased opinion?  Allow me to quote Mr. Orson Swindle, during Ohio State's final drive:

Screenshot8wh5_medium

And then there's this picture.

Anyway.

Defensive Line:  A  

Okay, one last example as long as we're on the subject.  On Pryor's first scramble, no less than three Penn State defensive linemen (Odrick, Okoli, and Evans) were clearly held.  The good news? If holding is such a widespread problem throughout a game, at least defensive line is raising hell.  The PSU defensive line was in the right place virtually all night.  Beanie Wells ate spoonful after heaping spoonful of stuffing.  Pryor made a few plays with his feet but didn't change the game in any meaningful way.  Maybin and Odrick were the stars of this unit.

Linebackers:  A-

Josh Hull and Tyrell Sales got the starts, and both played rather well.  Hull was getting a little more downhill than in previous efforts, and was more than eager to take on Beanie Wells. Still, he keeps getting stoned on blitzes.  The defense may as well play with ten players instead of forcing Hull to awkwardly dance with a random offensive lineman.

Sales made two especially great plays.  The first was sniffing out a screen pass to Robiskie and making a great open field tackle.  The second was throwing Beanie Wells to the ground after Mark Rubin knocked the ball away from Terrelle Pryor.  Oh, and then he poked the ball toward his teammates. 

Navorro Bowman, as always, was everywhere.  In the backfield taking down Wells, deflecting passes.  Truly awesome.  Now, imagine him and Sean Lee on the field together next year.


Secondary:  A-

They all played pretty well, but let's face it.  This is about Mark Rubin, who was tough from the very beginning.  He fought off a block on the first screen pass and stuck his nose between Beanie's numbers.  Then made the next tackle.  After a while, you expected Mark Rubin to always be the last guy in the dogpile to be peeled off Beanie Wells. Rubin was occasionally lost in pass coverage, but against such a run-heavy, one-dimensional offense, he was outstanding.

Coaching: A+

Stop Beanie Wells and let the chips fall where they may.   Not the most complicated gameplan you'll ever see, but it didn't have to be exotic.  Just effective.

 

Screenshot9fq2_medium

Oh, and waaaaaaaah, holding!

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Black Shoe Diaries

You must be a member of Black Shoe Diaries to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Black Shoe Diaries. You should read them.

Join Black Shoe Diaries

You must be a member of Black Shoe Diaries to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Black Shoe Diaries. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9347_tracker