Johnson: Ohio State vs. Maryland Final Thoughts heading into the game

Big Ten 2018 Bowl Projections And CFP Picks For Week 13 - Buckeye Wire

Johnson: Ohio State vs. Maryland Final Thoughts heading into the game

BuckeyeWire

Johnson: Ohio State vs. Maryland Final Thoughts heading into the game


Each week, we bring you some random thoughts before Ohio State takes the field. Here are some nuggets about this weekend’s tougher-than-it-looks-on-paper showdown with the Maryland Terrapins.


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  • This is a classic “trap door” game for the Buckeyes. After the Selection Committee left Ohio State at No. 10 in the College Football Playoff rankings, it’s only natural that the team would want to look ahead to the game with TTUN. However, Matt Canada and Andy Buh are two of the best in the business. If OSU doesn’t focus solely on the Terrapins, it could lose this weekend. That would reduce the Buckeyes to role of spoiler, which about as exciting as watching the Rutgers offense operate.
  • No one wearing Scarlet and Gray wants to see that happen. Regardless of what the committee says, this team is perfectly capable of winning the national championship. Let’s hope that it doesn’t give the SEC the benefit of a “do over” again this year.
  • Yes, I’m referring to LSU. I know that I said that the Buckeyes didn’t do enough against Michigan State to move up very far, I expected them to be in front of a two-loss LSU team. Didn’t the committee tell us last year that wins and losses matter or is that only when it works in the SEC’s favor?
  • Okay, back to what’s happening on the gridiron. The Buckeyes can make a major statement this weekend against the Maryland secondary. If Ohio State’s receivers torch the best secondary in the nation (in terms of interceptions), the SEleCtion Committee has to give them credit for that.
  • Of course, there’s nothing that says that Urban Meyer won’t decide to ram the ball down Maryland’s throat. In the last two meetings — both decisive victories — Ohio State averaged 265 yards per game and 5.74 yards per carry.
  • On the other side of the ball, keep an eye on Terp QB Tyrrell Pigrome. Although he served Kasim Hill’s backup this season, he did rally Maryland back from a huge deficit against Indiana last week. He also sparked the Terrapins to a 51-41 victory over Texas in 2017.
  • The key for the Ohio State defense is to get after Pigrome. Maryland’s offensive line ranks 61st nationally in sacks allowed, while the Buckeye pass rush is down to 26th after recording just one sack over the last two weeks.
  • Prediction: The Buckeyes know what they have to do in this contest. After blowing out the Terrapins in each of the last two seasons, OSU knows that it will get Maryland’s best shot in this year. UM will hang around for awhile, before the Buckeyes pull away in the second half.  Ohio State 56, Maryland 24.

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