Friday, October 26, 2007

weather update

Figure 1-4: The ultimate military leader. Egotistical, caring, and batshit crazy.
What ho? The weather seems to be clearing. Enter the awesome George Patton quotes:

Chaplain: You wanted to see me, General?
Patton: Oh, yes, Chaplain. I'm sick and tired of Third Army having to fight the Germans, the Supreme Command, no gasoline, and now this ungodly weather. I want a prayer... a weather prayer.
Chaplain: A weather prayer, sir?
Patton: Yes, let's see if you can't get God working with us on this thing.
Chaplain: It'll take a pretty thick rug for that kind of praying.
Patton: I don't care if it takes a flying carpet.
Chaplain: I don't know how this is going to be received, General. Praying for good weather so we can kill our fellow man?
Patton: I assure you, sir, because of my intimate relations with the Almighty, if you write a good prayer, we'll have good weather. I expect that prayer within an hour.

Almighty and most merciful Father, we humbly beseech Thee of Thy great goodness to restrain this immoderate weather with which we have had to contend. Grant us fair weather for battle. Graciously hearken to us as soldiers who call upon Thee, that armed with Thy power, we may advance from victory to victory and crush the wickedness and oppression of our enemies and establish Thy justice among men and nations. Amen.

The weather's perfect. Cod, get me that chaplain. He stands in good with the Lord, and I want to decorate him.
--General Patton, the day after the Weather Prayer worked

Ohio State has its Buckeyes.....

JaOSU is in town this week, if you haven't heard. So is gameday. So is bad weather, paternoville, a whiteout, a night game, and oodles of drunken PSU faithful. Sounds familiar.
The biggest difference is the state of the teams playing. Back in '05, PSU was the (huge) underdog, and nobody outside of Happy Valley knew any better. Just ask Corso and Herbstreit. So what happened? Poz ran amok, the defense played lights out for the final half, and the offense capitalized on turnovers. That game still gives me shivers. To this day, I will promise you that even though I watched the game with friends at the Lion's Den, I felt the thumping in the stadium. Bible truth. Anyone who was in Penn State, and not at the game, will tell you the exact same thing. A team that had once held prominence in the national eye was now back, and everyone felt it.
Not this year. Even though JaOSU comes to town in similar peripheral conditions, the team is not the same. Their offense is relatively untested (the '05 team already played Texas), and Laurinitis is no Hawk. Hawk was a straight-up brute, and handled every aspect of the game. Laurinitis can cover well (great hands), but is still not quite there in the run defense. He will be there senior year (hopefully not next year), but not as a sophomore.
As Michigan State showed last week, Boeckman can be rattled. Compound that with playing for the first time on the road against a very competent defense, and things could get interesting. Add on 110k+ inebriated, screaming fans and sloppy conditions, and things will get tricky. Bradley has to let fly at the start of the game-do not let Boeckman get comfortable. Boeckman is the #1 rated passer in the B10; keeping him out of a rhythm is paramount.
Wells, on the other hand, rang up 221 on the MSU defense last week. This indicates that he is finally injury-free, or that the MSU defense gave up. This is the same defense that held Indiana in check. Sort of. Wells absolutely frightens me right now, especially that the running game will be such an important issue given the conditions. He has good ball control, and I anticipate many dumpoff, screen, and swing passes his way Saturday night. Giving myself ulcers thinking about this. The good? Iowa and Wisconsin ran similar plays. I would feel much more confident if we had Odrick.
What I pray for on defense
  • Attack early and often. Against Iowa And Wisconsin, we brought pressure multiple times from the LBs rushing outside the DEs. It worked wonders.
  • Create turnovers
  • Justin King will reestablish himself. Word on the street is that he is still trying to shake off the shoulder injury he incurred from the ND game.
  • Sciorotto pulls a Lowry and intercepts Boeckman in OSU territory. PSU fake pitch D-Will off-tackle right, Morelli to Golden for a TD.
  • Maurice Evans snorts tiger blood; De-spleens Boeckman.

What I pray for on offense

  • Morelli keeps up his play. Just solid quarterbacking.
  • With the loss of Hahn, I just don't see us going for over 120 on the ground. If we do, we win.
  • Keep it to two turnovers or less, none inside our 30.
  • Keep Lawlor in the backfield for blocking. We are depleted on the line with Lucian and Shaw being questionable for the game.
  • No short passes over the middle.
  • MRob to be on the sidelines (SF is in their bye week).

Special teams

This is the Achilles heel for the Buckeyes. They know it, we know it. We need a big play on special teams. This can be in the form of Kelly not missing a kick, or Wallace/King giving us great field position. It can even be just not letting up a big return. I just know we need something out of them this week akin to last week, sans the lengthy Indiana punt return.

I have no clue how these teams are going to react to each other. It is nice that PSU has adopted a less-conservative approach in the last 3 games, but the fact that Illinois and Indiana both put up points on us still unnerves me. Will PSU continue to pass on first down? Will we try to pressure Boeckman? Will our O-line be able to hold back the formidable OSU front 7?

My random, clueless predicitons

OSU has 4 false start penalties. Anthony Morelli goes 24-40, 210 yds, 2 TDs, 1 INT. Kinlaw/Royster go for 145 yards on the ground. Penn State wins the battle of the LBs again.

PSU 24 OSU 16

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

PSU vs. OSU nonsense

Tale of the tape- A quick breakdown of the school and their relative strengths in a heah-to-head. PSU answers are first because they won the coin-toss.

  • The Pennsylvania State University
  • The Ohio State University


If brevity is your thing
  • Penn State
  • Ohio State
If it isn't
  • Penn State
advantage: PSU
  • Brutus Buckeye
  • The Nittany lion

advantage: PSU

What the hell is....?

  • A Nittany Lion
  • A Buckeye?
Stadium capacity
  • 107,282 (110,753 record)
  • 101,569
advantage: PSU
Can count on them to beat....
  • Anyone but Michigan
  • Anyone including Michigan

big advantage: OSU

Coaching Fashion Statement
  • Rolled up pants and black shoes. Coke-bottle glasses. Old-school Moxie.
  • Sweater Vests
advantage: PSU. Sweater vests are never a fashion statement
Tailgating environment
  • In the cow pastures as far as one can stagger.
  • Local Hotel
advantage: PSU

Tailgating Hazard
  • Bags of urine, Eagles and Steelers fans, lack of port-o-johns.
  • OSU fans, Columbus
advantage: OSU. Are you kidding me?

Annoying accent
  • Yins. Yuhns. Stillers. Iggles.
  • Midwestern Drawl
advantage: OSU. nothing in the first answer is even a word.
Good looking (female) cheerleaders
  • Not historically
  • Yup

advantage: OSU by a nose

Football player grad rate
  • Extremely high
  • Extremely low
advantage: PSU
Football player draft value
  • Extremely low
  • Extremely High
advantage: OSU
Recent linebackers of note
  • Poz, Connor, Shaw, Lee
  • Laurinitis, Hawk
advantage: PSU. Hawk DQ'd for marrying Brady Quinn's sister
Looks like PSU 7-5! Huzzah!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

More on Evans

Evans received the B10 playa' of the week. His stats? A paltry 4.5 TFL, 3.5 Sacks, and two forced fumbles. I believe the picture below says everything...

Figure 1-2: If Evans grabbed you like this, you would fumble too. OR-Evans is groin-grabbingly good.
This only helps the D-line. Evans will be heavily guarded on Saturday, whilst the rest of the line/rushing LBs will be in to wreak havok.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Indiana Wrappup

Figure 1-1: They aren't exactly who I thought they were

Before I sharpshoot this game in my "analysis", I first and foremost would like to say I was dead wrong about this Indiana team. Why? As I stated last week, I mailed it in. I didn't do my homework, so imagine the surprise when Indiana marched down the field and scored on their first drive. Other positives for Indiana include the 6-7" manchild, Jay Hardy, dismantling Justin King. Offensively, this team only lacks a good running back. The Hoosiers WILL be getting a bowl game, so bully to them.

The Good
  • Anthony Morelli, the offensive line the running game. Jay and Galen have these guys firing on all cylinders, and the play calling still is refreshing. The only caveat here is the 3 FGs in the second half, all from the goal line. Do NOT make FGs a habit within the ten yard line. Look what happenned to the Eagles yesterday.
  • We won a close game on the road. We have accomplished neither of those two this season.
  • Maurice Evans. This guy is an absolute terror. And is a sophmore.
The Bad
  • The rest of the d-line. No pressure from anywhere but Evans.
  • Our defensive strategy. They passed 48 times. I would say 24 of them, we played the run. As a result, Indiana aired it out and torched us.
  • Justin King. He got straight beaten. I understand that he was covering a 6-7" force of nature, and the QB had the brains to throw the jump ball (a la the Randy Moss method), but he is relying on just his presence near the receiver to discourage the pass attempt in his direction.
The Ugly
  • We finally got the full-blown injury bug. Losing Hahn could be a devastating blow for the running game. Additionally, he is a senior, and he shredded his ACL. That is not the way for a guy who plays so hard to end his career. It just isn't fair.
  • Losing Odrick with a broken ankle for the season. 6'5" DTs with ability are rare. Luckily, we have very competant reserves in Abe Koroma, McKeown, etc. Additionally, he will be back next season.
  • The reffing. Or as all call it, "The Effing".
We got the win. The offense was good. The D was not. We lost 2 good starters. Indiana is a good team. There is now parity in the B10.