Dwayne Haskins is the difference maker in the Ohio State Buckeye offense

Dwayne Haskins is the difference maker in the Ohio State Buckeye offense

BuckeyeWire

Dwayne Haskins is the difference maker in the Ohio State Buckeye offense


Managing Editor Terry Johnson reacts to quarterback Dwayne Haskins’ first career start and what it means for the Buckeyes going foward


Contact/Follow @TerryPJohnson

With Dwayne Haskins under center, the Ohio State offense is more explosive than it was under JT Barrett.

That’s not a knock on Barrett, who set several Big Ten passing records during his outstanding career. His astronomical stats and numbers tell you all you need to know about how good Barrett was in college.

In addition, this opinion piece is not an overreaction to a very solid win. While cynics will caution that we shouldn’t read too much into this contest because “it’s just Oregon State”, every Buckeye fan should love what he/she saw on Saturday afternoon.

Yes, I am serious. And please, don’t call me Shirley.

Make no mistake about it: Haskins brings a completely different dimension to the Ohio State offense. He’s got a powerful arm but is also incredibly accurate. That rare combination will keep opposing defenses honest, forcing them to respect both the run and the pass.

Just look at what happened on the first Buckeye touchdown. Oregon State was in man coverage since Ohio State had the ball near the goal line. The Beaver defense bit on the fake, which allowed Haskins to spot a wide open Terry McLaurin for the touchdown.

Haskins’ pinpoint accuracy was the key to this contest. With Oregon State worried about the passing game, Mike Weber (186 yards) and J.K. Dobbins (74 yards) both had a huge game running the ball. In fact, the offense was so successful in the first half that the first unit when seven for seven on third down conversions, scoring on every single possession, until some of the second teamers came on late in the second quarter.

That’s tough to accomplish against air, let alone a Pac-12 opponent.

Does this mean that the offense is going to put up half a hundred in every contest?

Probably not. As we saw in the third quarter, there’s still a little bit of work to do, especially in pass protection.

Yet, Saturday’s performance has to excite Ohio State fans about the 2018 season. While some worried that the offense might struggle because it would be a little different than in years past, the Buckeyes’ 77-point showing against Oregon State ought to calm those fears considerably.

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