Thursday, September 17, 2009

Matchup Preview: Can Ohio State Avoid a Rocket-Sized Hangover?

By Chip Minnich—OSU Featured Columnist—



Cleveland Browns Stadium (Cleveland, OH). 12 p.m. EST,

Toledo Head Coach:

Tim Beckman

Toledo Players Who Were Recruited By Ohio State:

N/A. There are not any players on Toledo's roster who were actively recruited by Ohio State. Freshman QB Terrance Owens is from Cleveland Glenville and visited Ohio State unofficially, but was never offered a scholarship.

Toledo Rushing Offense vs Ohio State Defense:

Toledo rushed for 305 yards last week against Colorado in a 54-38 win, and only 70 yards rushing in a 52-31 loss to Purdue. Ohio State was able to limit Navy's vaunted triple-option attack to 186 yards in its 31-27 victory in game one, and hold USC's talented rushing attack to 118 yards in its close 18-15 defeat last weekend.

Toledo averages out to almost 188 rushing yards per game, while Ohio State averages out to limiting opponents to 152 yards per game. I am going to give the edge to the Buckeyes here on this one.

Edge: Ohio State

Toledo Passing Offense vs Ohio State Defense:

Toledo's stellar offensive output so far this season can be traced to senior QB Aaron Opelt. So far this season, Opelt has been the MAC Player Of The Week both games and is completing 62% of his passes in Toledo's spread attack.

Ohio State was largely able to limit USC's Matt Barkley due to the intense crowd noise of Ohio Stadium as well as Barkley's inexperience. Aaron Opelt has had two good games against teams from BCS conferences.

Ohio State's pass defense is ranked 10th in the Big Ten, with 193.5 yards per game being allowed. Considering that Toledo's offense is averaging nearly 371 yards passing per game, I am going to give the slight edge to the Rockets on this one, despite Ohio State's talent on the defensive line. If Ohio State cannot pressure Aaron Opelt, this could turn out to be a shoot-out.

Slight Edge: Toledo

Ohio State Rushing Offense vs Toledo Defense:

Ohio State's rushing attack has only been able to generate 241 yards rushing this season. Toledo surrendered 315 yards to Purdue in week one, and 95 yards rushing to Colorado last week.

Translation: if Ohio State cannot run the ball on Toledo, it is going to be a long season in Columbus. I look for Ohio State to try to get QB Terrelle Pryor more involved in the rushing attack and for a heavy dose of RBs Daniel "Boom" Herron and Brandon Saine.

Edge: Ohio State

Ohio State Passing Offense vs Toledo Defense:

Ohio State has been struggling through the air as well so far this season. QB Terrelle Pryor is completing under 55 percent of his passes and looks generally indecisive in the pocket. While Pryor had some shining moments in last week's game against USC, it seems as though he is hesitant to run when opportunities present themselves.

Toledo's pass defense ranks 12th in the MAC at 288 yards per game being allowed. While I do not believe Ohio State will throw for nearly that many yards, I do look for Jim Tressel to try to develop Terrelle Pryor's confidence as a thrower before Big Ten play begins next weekend. Keep an eye on WR DeVier Posey; I have a feeling this may be Posey's break-out game.

Edge: Ohio State

Special Teams:

Toledo ranks 11th in the MAC on kickoff returns, last on punt returns, and last in punting. Ohio State has some dangerous returners in WR Ray Small, RB Brandon Saine, and WR Lamaar Thomas. Junior DB Grant Schwartz came oh-so-close with a punt block attempt last week against USC. Here is an area where Ohio State may be able to obtain some distinct field advantage against Toledo.

Edge: Ohio State


Even though this is a "home" game for Toledo, look for a heavy Ohio State flavor to the crowd at Cleveland Browns Stadium. Toledo's Tim Beckman is a former Ohio State secondary coach under Jim Tressel, so I look for Beckman to try to capitalize on his familiarity with Tressel's coaching styles and strategies.

The biggest "X" factor in this game is how Ohio State can bounce back after such a tough loss to USC last weekend. If Ohio State is still moping about last week's defeat to USC, Toledo will make them pay for it dearly.

Toledo is not coming into Cleveland Browns Stadium thinking that they are going to lose to Ohio State. Toledo is brimming with confidence after the beating they gave to Colorado last week, and nothing would please so many of the players on the Toledo roster than to prove how much of a mistake Ohio State made by not recruiting them.

Edge: Toledo


This game hinges completely on Ohio State's ability to put the tough loss to USC behind them. Ohio State has not lost to an in-state rival school in 88 years.

I look for Ohio State to use the enthusiasm of the crowd in Cleveland Browns Stadium, as well as QB Terrelle Pryor's best performance of this young season, to carry them to victory.

This one will be close at the half, but I look for Ohio State to pull away by the end of the third quarter.

Ohio State 35, Toledo 17

CLICK HERE for more from
BlockONation ::: Buckeye Football Lives Here


  1. 35-17?
    350 - 1.7 as far as I'm concerned.

    Who has Toledo beat? Colorado? After being blown out by Purdont? Please, Toledo will be lucky to get 200 yards of total offense this weekend and will struggle to even get past their own 30 yard line from what I saw in Ohio State's defense against USC. On top of everybody on the team being pissed and wanting to kill somebody.

  2. anonymous your prediction was right on, the Rocket defense couldn't stop a half-way retarded OSU offense. A lot of people were saying USC was just such a super unbeatable team but Judging from the Washinton win over USC it justifies the thinking that Tressel just can not win against a competent coaching staff. OSU has the talent wish he had a plan on how to use it.

  3. Come on dude, USC always blows it against at least one underdog on the year. Last year after beating Ohio State the best defense in the country sucked ass against Oregon State and the offense couldn't find their rhythm.
    This is just USC being USC.

  4. Your right about USC always stumbling once a year but I watched that Oregon State game last year and those guys played an incredible game to beat USC no mistakes whatsoever. what I'm saying is it wasn't so much USC sucking as it was OSU playing lights out. In the game against Washington without Barkley they struggled with Aaron Corp out there, whatever happened to Mitch Mustang?

  5. I don't know what happened to Mustang but he mustn't be very good, he had mediocre stats over at Arkansas and even with few plays at USC he is mediocre.
    The USC depth at QB isn't that great anymore I guess.

  6. Hey guys, it's Mitch MUSTAIN, not Mustang. LOL

  7. Are you really laughing at a grammatical error? If so, I pity you.

  8. That's a spelling error, not a grammatical error so I pity you, MORON.

    Also, it was just a poor display of college football knowledge to not know that the kid's name is Mustain, not Mustang...


Do you really like or really hate one of our articles?

Do you agree or absolutely disagree with something you've read here?


You can post anonymously or add your name if you like.

Either way, registration is NOT required!

BlockONation's Expanding Web Presence


Numerous BlockONation articles have been posted on or linked to from some very well known, high-volume sports websites.

We'd like to take a moment to both acknowledge and thank those sites for their support in helping make BlockONation one of the most popular new Ohio State Football blogs on the web!

In no particular order:

Again, thanks so very much to those sites for all their support and also, a huge thank you to the fans who have visited the site to date!

I'd also like to personally thank all those individuals who have contributed to the success of the site! I wouldn't be here without your help over the last 8+ years. You all know who you are!

It is our mission here at to continue to provide top-notch, fresh content for our readers and we will always do everything possible to meet your expectations!

Honestly, I really can't thank you all enough....

HD Handshoe

Thanks for visiting BlockONation
Copyright © 2004-2012 All rights reserved. Site powered by Blogger. Site design and layout by HD Handshoe. This web site is not affiliated with or endorsed by The Ohio State University. Logos, helmet and uniform designs are registered trademarks of the teams indicated. Some photos on this site courtesy of the Associated Press, and Getty Images under the Fair Use Doctrine (Sections 107-118) of the 1976 Copyright Act.