Ohio State has a big one on Saturday. It’s against a top fifteen opponent in the Oregon Ducks, and if the Buckeyes have designs of making another College Football Playoff appearance, winning this intersectional matchup against a quality opponent will go a long way.
But it might not be as easy as many think. Even though the Ducks looked like they were flying backward against Fresno State at times last week, you might be able to chalk a lot of that up to the byproduct of it being Week 1.
The reality is that these are two of the most athletic and skilled teams individually across the board you’ll find in the entire country. So yeah, don’t expect this one to be a Buckeye blowout.
Like we try to do before every game, we have a stream of consciousness and thoughts heading into the matchup Saturday. Some nuggets might be educational, others entertaining, and others downright senseless because that’s how my brain works.
NEXT … Final Thoughts before Ohio State and Oregon
Final Thoughts for the matchup between Ohio State and Oregon
– Ohio State is 9-0 against Oregon all-time. That’s the most wins against any opponent the Buckeyes have yet to lose to. Might Saturday make it 10-0? I know the Ducks would like to get that stat off their wings.
– I’m a little on the fence with clothes hanging in the Oregon closet. On one hand, it’s pretty cool to toss out about 327 uniform combinations, but at the same time, where’s the tradition of seeing a team like Ohio State run out there with an iconic look?
– Freshman running back TreVeyon Henderson sure looks like a difference-maker in the backfield. How long before he starts pushing for more carries? Could this be the game?
– Now that linebacker Palaie Gaoteote is eligible for Ohio State, where does he fall in the grand scheme of things? How soon will we see him on the field?
– You think former Oregon coach Chip Kelly has his eye on this game? He brought the Ducks to grand heights when he was stomping around in a visor up in the Pacific Northwest, and Ryan Day is his protégé. As luck would have it, Kelly’s UCLA Bruins has an off-week. We’re guessing popcorn and pizza are in order in Westwood.
– I’m putting my money on Oregon star defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux playing Saturday. But how effective he will be remains to be seen.
– If Thibodeaux does play and is anywhere close to himself, Nicholas Petit-Frere and Dawand Jones are going to be tested. Those battles on the edge might be the difference in this one.
– Ohio State did not allow a sack last week against Minnesota. That’s impressive but don’t expect that to be the case this week.
– C.J. Stroud has yet to really complete anything deep down the field. Against the Gophers, most of it was short passes that allowed the offensive weapons to get out in space and do damage. The game plan will probably be pretty similar in this one. Queue up the nuclear codes and let the offense rip.
– So how rowdy will the ‘Shoe be on Saturday? It’ll have been 659 days since the stands were full. And while you’d think that would have the masses whipped up into a frenzy, I always worry about a historically bland noon game atmosphere. Start “preparing” earlier than normal for this one Buckeye fans.
– This is just a reminder that Ryan Day has yet to lose a regular-season game at Ohio State. Including when he filled in for a suspended Urban Meyer in 2018, Day is now 23-0 in non-College Football Playoff games. I read in a mathematics journal once that that’s pretty good.
– I’m a little concerned about this game to be honest. The buzz leading up to it isn’t quite what I thought it would be and there seems to be a ho-hum to it. I worry about the players falling into the same trap. I hope I’m wrong. I probably am because that’s how I roll.
– Let’s do this! Go Bucks!
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