Ohio State football vs. Youngstown State: Complete preview and prediction

Alright Ohio State football fans, we know Saturday wasn’t exactly the start to the season we were hoping form and in the same breath, how spoiled have we become that a 20-point win doesn’t feel all that impressive?

I get it, but it was probably a little unrealistic of us to think that a revamped offensive line and a quarterback replacing the No. 2 pick in the NFL draft were going to come out and not miss a beat. But a win is a win and now Ohio State moves its sights to Youngstown State.

The Penguins put a hurting on Valparaiso in their season opener by a score of 52-10. However, coming to Columbus is going to be an entirely different story for the FCS contenders. The Bucks will definitely be looking to work out some kinks with an overmatched in-state opponent. Maybe Jim Tressel, who recently retired as president of YSU, can give the football team some tips on playing in the ‘Shoe.

Time to get ready for another week of Buckeye football!

Records and Broadcast Information


Ohio State (1-0), Youngstown State (1-0)

Broadcast, TV, Game Time

Date: Saturday, Sept. 9
Game Time: Noon EST
Network: Big Ten Network – Live Stream fuboTV (watch here)
Venue: Ohio Stadium (Columbus, Ohio) Capacity: 102,780
All-Time Series: Ohio State leads, 2-0
Last Meeting:
Ohio State defeated Youngstown State, 43-0, in 2008

Ohio State Potential Game Plan for Victory

What We Might See

I’m going to keep this very simple. This is nothing more than a tune-up game for Ohio State. All of the things we watched on Saturday against Indiana that were concerning are the things that the Buckeyes need to work on against the Penguins.

Some of that work is just some cohesion on the offensive line. Remember, the Buckeyes are replacing three NFL draft picks from last year’s outstanding line. Jimmy Simmons, Josh Fryer, and Carson Hinzman are more than capable and should be fine in the long run, but the O-line works as a unit and they have to figure out how to work together. No better time than the present.

Secondly, I believe Ryan Day will open up the playbook a bit more to allow Kyle McCord — and presumably Devin Brown — to gain some much-needed confidence. McCord really didn’t look all that bad when you go back and watch the film. And Brown really didn’t get much opportunity. Maybe because this really is McCord’s team, despite rumors the quarterback competition is ongoing. Just be patient and remember C.J. Stroud struggled in his first couple of games as a starter as well.

Defensively, it looked like flashbacks of the Silver Bullets. Buckeye defenders were flying all over the field and it will be more of the same this week. By the way, the last time an Ohio State defense allowed three or fewer points… 2019. And that defense was elite.

However, there is one more area we feel we need to see some steps forward and that’s in the pass rush from the ends. The Buckeyes simply have too many five-star recruits to not be putting more pressure in the opposing backfield.

The Penguins are predominantly a running team and Jim Knowle’s squad had no problem stopping the run on Saturday. Again some more practice in game-like situations will only help this team get stronger.

Key Offensive Player for Ohio State

Kyle McCord – Quarterback

All eyes are going to be on Kyle McCord this week. He didn’t play all that poorly, but when fans are used to what C.J. Stroud did the past two seasons … well, patience can be thin. McCord now has the opportunity to start winning over the fan base playing well against an inferior opponent.

Key Defensive Player for Ohio State

Jack Sawyer – Defensive End

Ohio State had high expectations when Jack Sawyer came to Ohio State. So far, he’s not lived up to the hype. Much of that can be attributed to being played out of position, but now that he is back at the edge, Sawyer has to show us something. There won’t be a more opportune time to get his footing than this week against Youngstown State.

The Prediction

Let’s keep this short. Ohio State is not going to lose and will not be challenged by Youngstown State. If so, the Buckeyes have much bigger problems than any of us could have imagined.

This one will be over early and will give plenty of opportunity for some of the younger guys to step up and get some situational reps.

Final Score

Ohio State 56, Youngstown State 10



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Story originally appeared on Buckeye Wire