The Ohio State Buckeyes won the Fiesta Bowl over the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, as they finished the season 12-1.
Rapid Reaction: First Half
I do not care how much of a homer you are, Ohio State defensive end Joey Bosa deserved to be ejected for targeting. As the rule is written, he put his head down and drove it into Notre Dame quarterback DeShone Kizer. It looked crystal clear in slow motion. Yes, it was awful to see the best player on your defense get booted so early in a bowl game, but it was the right call.
It was equally difficult to watch Notre Dame linebacker Jaylon Smith go down with a knee injury after a play where he really was not hit. Smith landed funny trying to gather himself at the end of a play. When you watch the replay, it was obvious something was wrong. Unfortunately, the injury is pretty serious.
When Buckeyes offensive coordinator Ed Warinner moved up to the booth for the Michigan game, it was very evident how much faster the Buckeye offense played. Well, that tempo continued to be effective early against Notre Dame. 28 first half points was excellent, including a couple of very quick drives to put points up early and often.
I tried to warn all of you that Kizer could play. He caused issues (at least in the first half) for a beleaguered Buckeye pass rush and was instrumental in the two scoring drives that the Irish had in the first half. Kizer was particularly effective on the last drive of the half, where he was able to showcase his running skills en route to a one yard touchdown run.
Next: Rapid Reaction: Second Half