BCS #9 Ohio State v. BCS #3 Penn State

BCS #9 Ohio State v. BCS #3 Penn State
Penn State

BCS #9 Ohio State v. BCS #3 Penn State

Ohio Stadium, Columbus, Ohio
Kickoff: 8pm
TV: ABC

Ohio State came out this week with a chip on their shoulder and took it to Michigan State.  Penn State started their game playing not to lose and fell behind early.  At half time both teams came out with different attitudes.  Penn State attacked Michigan on both sides of the ball and played to win while the Buckeyes came out and ran the clock out for two quarters.  Penn State clearly is on a roll while Ohio State may have finally found their groove.  Momentum may be with the Lions but they visit Columbus this week and the cards are stacked against them despite being favored by two points.  Not only have the Buckeyes seemingly found a groove but the game is at night, it’s Homecoming for OSU and Penn State has never won in the ‘Shoe since joining the Big Ten.  Penn State will arguably be the most balanced team the Buckeyes will face all year and OSU will be the most talented team the Lions will face in the 2008 regular season.  This will be a fantastic game so buckle your chinstraps for this one.

By Pete Quint

OSU “O”

Call it a groove or a rhythm or whatever but the Buckeye offense seemed to have it during first half of the Michigan State game.  Some mistakes were made and assignments blown but overall the offense played very well.  The line was aggressive and attacked the Spartan defense, quarterback Terrelle Pryor keeps getting better and Beanie Wells played like a Heisman Trophy candidate.  The most important part of the performance was the fact that it looked like the players were having fun.  Somewhere between the Purdue game and the Michigan State game the Buckeyes realized that football was supposed to be fun and it showed on the field.  The coaching staff seems to be echoing the fun factor and mixed things up getting a long completion to wide receiver Brian Hartline and short passes to the fullback and tight end.  The Penn State defense is scary good with leading tackler Navorro Bowman (71) and sack machine Aaron Maybin (10) leading the way.  They and the rest of the PSU defense will do everything they can to stop Wells.  The Buckeye offensive line is still suspect and if they don’t get tough up the middle, Beanie won’t have a chance.  If the Lions can effectively stop Wells then the pressure is really turned up on Pryor.  Getting in a few middle and long pass completions early on would do wonders for the confidence of the young quarterback and the play scheme of the Buckeye offense.

OSU ”D”

The Buckeye defense stuffed MSU running back Javon Ringer last week and they will attempt to repeat their efforts against PSU running back Evan Royster.  The dazzling 6-1, 212 lb sophomore is averaging 111.6 yards per game, 7.7 yards per carry and has ten rushing touchdowns on the season.  The emergence of Royster has everything to do with the improvement at the quarterback position.  Daryll Clark has reenergized a Penn State offense that has been dormant since the Michael Robinson days.  Clark has a big arm and is an effective scrambler.  The Nittany Lion offensive line has been nothing but outstanding this season.  Though undersized by Big Ten standards, the PSU line is athletic and aggressive.  The offensive line, lead by senior center A.Q. Shipley, has allowed only six sacks on the season, however Penn State uses a similar blocking scheme to Michigan State’s which the Buckeyes had tremendous success against.  The Buckeye defense played a strong game last week and will have to equal that performance to keep the Lions in check. 

Summary

The intangibles are stacked in favor of the Buckeyes however the Nittany Lions are favored by two.  Head coach Joe Paterno wants to win one in Ohio Stadium and this might be the last chance he gets before he retires.  Winner of this one will almost assuredly win the Big Ten.  Running the table, Penn State has as good a shot as anyone to be in the national title game while the Buckeyes, running the table or not, will need some help to get back there.  The Nittany Lions are ready for this game and will come out looking to put the Buckeyes to bed early.  Are the Buckeyes ready?  OSU hasn’t won a game of this magnitude since the 2006 #1 Ohio State v. #2 Michigan game.  The Bucks can win this game but their potential to lose the game is just as good.  Until the team and the coaching staff prove it decisively on the field there will still be doubts in the minds of many Buckeye faithful. 

Prediction: OSU 27 – PSU 17

Why OSU will win: 

Play like you did last week and keep it up for all four quarters.  The Homecoming crowd will be good and lubed up for this one and the team can feed off the intensity of the fans.  Don’t get conservative on this team unless you  have a four touchdown lead. 

Why OSU will lose:

If the team that played OU shows up.  Coaches and players alike need to perform like the Big Ten and national title are on the line because…well…they are.  Loser of this game will be out of contention for both.

Crazy stat or the game:

-Since joining the Big Ten in 1993, Penn State has never beaten Ohio State in Columbus.
-PSU is averaging 45 points per game.

PSU players to watch:
Sophomore RB #22 Evan Royster
Junior QB #17 Daryll Clark
Senior WR #24 Jordan Norwood
Freshman LB #18 Navorro Bowman
Sophomore  DE #59 Aaron Maybin

BrutusReport.com
Tags: Buckeyes Football Ohio State
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