Monday, May 25, 2009

Why Terrelle Pryor Will Lead the Buckeyes to the BCS Championship

by Michael Periatt
BlockONation Analyst

I've been reading all the backlash from that recent Andy Staples article that basically said Pryor was better than Tebow and Bradford. And I have one thing to say...


Really, we can go back and forth all day and argue until we are blue in the face and still probably change no one's mind.

Why don't we talk about what really matters like oh I don't know, the BCS CHAMPIONSHIP?!

But we'll get back to that in a second.

I went up to the Ohio State Spring game a couple weeks go (along with the rest of Ohio) and just like everyone else, witnessed a vastly improved Terrelle Pryor.

His footwork, mechanics, and accuracy were all night and day compared to last year and it was really refreshing to see that the OSU coaching staff was doing what they're paid to do.

But then again, how hard can it be to teach a mix between LeBron James, Usain Bolt, and Ben Roethlisberger to do anything that involves athleticism?

It's like teaching Eva Longoria to be gorgeous or George Bush to epically fail when he was our President.

Anyway, it got me thinking about the potential of this team. They are young and somewhat inexperienced, but I think they are overall more talented than the 2007 and 2008 teams and pretty darn close to (if not better than) the 2006 team.

Both the 2006 and 2007 teams made it to the BCS championship and then got utterly embarrassed in front of the entire nation. Their reputation still has not recovered.

Don't get me wrong, both teams were very good, but I think think this team has something they didn't; Terrelle Pryor.

I think Terrelle Pryor is the piece in the puzzle that can put them over the top. In fact, I know it.

TP is so special that I guarantee the Buckeyes will win a BCS Championship.

Notice, I didn't say this year (it could happen), but before he graduates (or declares for the NFL Draft), TP will deliver the Bucks to the promised land.

And here's why...

1. As I was saying before, TP is one of the most naturally gifted athletes in the history of college sports.

Remember, this guy was a top basketball recruit, too.

But it's crazy to watch what Pryor did last year without really having the ability to consistently throw the ball. At times (especially when Beanie was out), Pryor was OSU's only offense.

He was getting by guys not because he was the most polished and skilled player, but because he was the most athletic.

I remember one play against Michigan State last year in particular. It was a PA fake roll out to the right. Right when Pryor turned from the PA fake, an unblocked DE was right in his face.

Pryor's raw athleticism took over as he brought the ball back like he was going to throw, jabbed forward leaving the defender in his dust, ran toward the sideline, and threw the ball across his body to Brian Robiskie in the end zone.

No one else in the entire nation could have made that play. And that's what makes him so great. He has the ability to do things no one else can.

2. Have you ever heard Pryor talk?

The guy expects perfection.

Pryor lost two games as a starter last season. After the Penn State loss (in which his fourth quarter fumble lead the games only score and interception ended the game) Pryor said,

"When you turn over the ball two times in a game, everyone can say that it's not my fault, but if you really look at it, it is."

Later when talking about the interception he said,

"I should have known not to throw the ball there. I should have known to throw somewhere else. I mean, that's the game. I feel it's on me."

I like seeing a guy take responsibility for his mistakes. That shows character and maturity. It shows he's ready to handle the pressure that comes with being a top flight athlete.

My favorite TP quote, however came right after the the Fiesta Bowl loss to the Texas Longhorns. He said,

"We got to get better. We got to improve. Next year, we got to throw points up on the board. Point blank. Period."

Minutes after a heart breaking loss and the end to the longest football season of his life, Pryor was already thinking about next year and getting better.

This kid expects to win and has the motivation and the work ethic to accomplish just that. Mentally, TP is wired to win.

Point blank period.

3. There have been super athletic players in college before, but not all of them won it all.


Because they didn't have the supporting cast. But the Buckeyes have proven year in and year out that they bring in quality players that can win games.

Pryor will have a supporting cast and they're going to be pretty darn good. OSU is bringing in top ten recruiting classes year after year. They have the talent to build a great team around TP. Pryor will be what makes the ultimate difference, but his talented group of teammates will be right there with him.

Also, Pryor plays QB. No position has more of an impact in football. Great athletes at RB and WR can only make so much of an impact because they can only get so many touches.

But at QB, Pryor has the ball in his hands every play ready to change the game.

The Ohio State nation has gone through some tough times as of late. They're seen as a slightly above average team in a below average conference.

But Terrelle Pryor is going to change all that. He's going to EARN the respect back.

So sit back and enjoy—I know I will!

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