5. Gophers’ abysmal QB situation
All teams are flawed, so having the fewest is best when considering how much worse off it could be. To the Buckeyes, this means having a less than satisfactory pass defense. Last weekend, the Buckeyes were torched for 322 yards and three touchdowns through the air.
However, it is worth noting that the Hoosiers are actually a decent passing team. Hoosiers’ quarterback Peyton Ramsey can sling the rock as he showed off his considerable arm strength in the Shoe last Saturday evening. It was fortunate that Ramsey didn’t have a much bigger day as he misfired on a couple deep balls that were actually overthrown.
Though the Hoosiers’ quarterback was more hit than miss last weekend, the Buckeyes were letting the receivers get as much space as they wanted on the back end. There was a lot of separation created especially around the edges. The Hoosiers passed the ball over twice as many times as they ran it.
Teams that have had some success against the Buckeyes have been able to win the game with solid quarterback play. This has been the case with TCU’s Shawn Robinson, Penn State’s Trace McSorley, and most recently the Hoosiers’ Peyton Ramsey.
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Each of these quarterbacks have been able to either run the ball effectively, throw the ball effectively, or both in order to keep it close with the Buckeyes.
The Gophers are playing with a freshman quarterback by the name of Zack Annexstad. He’s been very average this season as he has the 10th most passing yards in the Big Ten, sixth most touchdowns, and had thrown the third most interceptions.
The Gophers’ rebuilding process is in full effect as their team is led by a freshman quarterback. It would have been better served if the quarterback was a veteran so the others could learn under him but they’ve opted to have everyone come up together from square one.
It will be difficult for the Gophers to make their mark against the Buckeyes with below average quarterback play.
The result from when Rutgers played the Buckeyes tells the story. Rutgers quarterback Artur Sitkowski came into the match up as one of the lower tier quarterbacks in the Big Ten and their team ended up getting demolished. Expect the Buckeyes to do much of the same against the Gophers this weekend.