1. The Buckeyes’ defense will bulldoze the Gophers
It’s been an up and down year for the Buckeyes defensively. Their group is still as flashy as ever with plenty of top-notch talent in every area. The inconsistencies of this defense has been the biggest issue. There’s been improvement over time, but there are definitely some areas that are in need of patching up.
First and foremost, the Buckeyes must get to the quarterback. Last game, the defense recorded three sacks and six tackles for a loss. There was decent pressure later in the game but there was still plenty of time for their quarterback to pass on several occasions. Hoosiers’ quarterback Peyton Ramsey was able to wait for some of the deep routes to develop before sending it down the field.
However, the Buckeyes did a decent job minimizing big plays. Other than their long run to start the game, the Hoosiers were mostly kept under wraps. In fact, the Hoosiers’ 45-yard run in their first drive made up half of their total rushing yards in the game. As a team, the Hoosiers rushed for just 84 yards total.
Most of the work that needs done is on the back end. The secondary got absolutely torched in this one for over 300 yards and three touchdowns through the air. Ramsey got almost whatever he wanted and if not for a few miscues he could have had a much bigger day.
The defensive backs were seemingly lost while covering their receivers as they paid no attention to where the ball was at. There was a few times where it could have been picked off if the defender didn’t have his back turned.
The Buckeyes still have one of the best defenses in the nation which is something that needs to be remembered in the end. Nit picking this defense is necessary but it’s not like these flaws are the end of the world.
Fortunately, the Gophers are ranked 96th in the nation in passing yards per game. This would be a great time for the Buckeyes to wise up in pass defense. Expect the Buckeyes to shut down the Gophers in the passing game on Saturday.