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Ohio State Reaction: The Good and the Bad

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In almost every game, good things will happen and bad things will happen. This post will be a recurring feature after each game, an easy way to break down some specifics. We'll address offense first, defense second, and special teams when necessary.


The Good

  • Lamar Miller! What else can be said at this point? Somehow he was actually underrated coming into this season. As I mentioned on Twitter on Saturday, Miller was left off the preseason all-conference team in favor of Boston College's Montel Harris and Clemson's Andre Ellington. At the moment, Miller is fourth in the country with a 151 yards per game average. Ellington, meanwhile, is averaging a flat 100, and Harris has yet to play this season.
  • The balance of carries between Miller and Mike James were a bit more sane this week. Miller rushed 26 times to James' 12, and while the team should be weary of overworking Miller, this 75/25 split makes a lot more sense than the 50/50 split we saw versus Maryland.
  • Allen Hurns continues to emerge as UM's go-to receiver. Hurns is the classic type of player that dopey announcers love: he's not the biggest, he's not the fastest etc. etc. But, sometimes cliches fit.
  • The protection for Jacory Harris was pretty good all night, and that was with redshirt freshman Jonathan Feliciano making his first career start at right tackle, and Brandon Washington sliding over to left tackle for his first ever start at that position. Likewise, the blocking in the running game, was also clearly very good, and that includes the tight ends and receivers, who busted some holes open on tosses.

The Bad

  • Jacory Harris! What else can be said at this point? He made some great throws on Saturday night. Both of his touchdown passes to Allen Hurns had perfect touch, and he threw a nice little fade pass to Tommy Streeter at the end of the first half. But, the interceptions! My god, the interceptions. For the love of god, the interceptions. Harris' first pick was spectacularly boneheaded: both the TV and radio broadcasts of the game noted that LaRon Byrd was shockingly wide open downfield but that Harris' throw was just beyond late. His second interception looked to be caused by a deflection in another instance where Harris took way too long to pull the trigger, but in a press conference yesterday, Al Golden blamed the pick on the running back on that play. I'll just leave that one there.
  • UM cleaned up the penalties on Saturday night, but at home and with a senior at quarterback, that should be expected. That said, a Clive Walford touchdown did get wiped off the board by an illegal formation penalty, and we're getting pretty close to that kinda thing being unacceptable.
  • Defense

    The Good

    • It's hard to find fault in a defense that allowed barely over 200 yards. Granted, Ohio State's quarterback play was epically bad on Saturday night, but generally speaking it was an encouraging performance by a defense that probably needed a confidence boost.
    • Miami's lone interception proved just how valuable Sean Spence is to the Canes. Against Maryland, Miami was routinely beaten over the middle, most notably on a 1st and 20 from inside Maryland's own two yard line. But on Braxton Miller's first pass on Saturday night, Spence disregarded a play fake, dropped back into the middle of the field and deflected a pass that was eventually grabbed by JoJo Nicolas.
    • The Bad

    • Miami's pass rush still was not very impressive last night. They totaled two sacks, but both were coverage sacks more or less, or maybe plays where better quarterbacks would've made a play. Getting Marcus Forston back surely was a boon to the defensive line, but there's no doubt that Olivier Vernon is still sorely missed.
    • Though Miami eventually figured Ohio State's run game out, there was a point in the first half where they were getting gashed for huge chunks of yards on every play. Miami outrushed Ohio State by nearly 70 yards, but that was also a function of the Buckeyes being behind for the entire game. The Canes' defensive tackles need to play better.