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More and more it is looking like the class of the country in college football resides in the Southeastern Conference, with the LSU Tigers and the Alabama Crimson Tide coming in at 1-2 in the latest AP rankings, released today.
Rounding out the Top 5 are the Boise State Broncos, while the rest of the Top 10 are Oklahoma State, Stanford, Clemson, Oregon and Arkansas.
The Big Ten has a total of five teams in the Top 25, with Nebraska 13th, Michigan State 15th, Michigan 18th, and Illinois (fresh off of a loss to Ohio State on Saturday) 23rd.
Penn State is just outside of the Top 25 in the AP poll, coming in at 26th.
The SEC has six teams in the AP poll.
The Big Ten has a reputation right now for being one of the weaker conferences among the best in the country, but there’s no denying that in the early part of this season, teams from that conference have played some very good football.
In the latest USA Today Coaches Poll, the Big Ten put six teams in the top 25, including four in the top 15.
Wisconsin is the highest ranked team in the conference, coming in at 4th. Michigan follows at 10th after their big road win against Northwestern, and also in the top 15 are Nebraska and Illinois, both of whom had impressive victories over the weekend.
Also in the top 25 for the Big Ten were Michigan State and Penn State, two teams that people seem to be very “on the fence” about.
Michigan State ranked 19th in the Coaches poll, and only 23rd in the AP poll. Penn State came in at 25th in the coaches poll and unranked in the AP poll.
Not to anyone’s surprise, the Ohio State Buckeyes are still unranked after losing on their home field to the Michigan State Spartans on Saturday, but that doesn’t mean the Big Ten isn’t well-represented.
In the latest USA Today Coaches Poll, five Big Ten teams are ranked in the top 25, all five of which are in the top 20 teams in the country.
Wisconsin is ranked fifth after their big home win over the Nebraska Cornhuskers, who dropped from 8th to 15th.
The Michigan Wolverines made the biggest jump from 19th to 11th overall, but Illinois also moved from 22nd to 16th in the country.
Michigan State was ranked 25th last week and after their win against Ohio State, they rank 20th in the country.
The only real difference in the AP poll was that Michigan State was left off entirely, though they did receive the most votes of the non-top 25 teams.
Two teams really on the rise right now are Michigan and Illinois, Big Ten teams that no one really pegged as legit contenders before the season, and now they have a real chance to make a splash if they can keep it up.
Every year, one of the first publications I look for on news stands is the Athlon Sports college football preview, and this year is no different from others—they are on top of their game covering college football.
They have a week four Big Ten Power Ranking poll out, which you can find right here, and you’ll see that the Ohio State Buckeyes are ranked 7th in the conference as of week four.
Here is there analysis of the Buckeyes thus far:
7. Ohio State (3-1) – True freshman Braxton Miller, the nation’s No. 2 ranked Class of 2011 quarterback, played poised football in his first career start. He threw two touchdown passes to Devin Smith, ran for 83 yards on 17 carries, didn’t turn the ball over and directed the Buckeye offense to a 37-17 win over Colorado. Tailbacks Jordan Hall and Carlos Hyde got in on the action as well as Ohio State rushed for 226 yards on 47 attempts. It was a key weekend of experience for Miller as OSU rebounded from its debacle in Coral Gables last weekend and is now preppped for fellow 2011 Big Ten co-champs Michigan State to come to town this weekend.
The Buckeyes’ game against Michigan State should be one of the top matchups in the Big Ten this weekend.
The LSU Tigers have taken over the top spot in the Associated Press college football rankings, replacing the Oklahoma Sooners.
Alabama, Boise State and Oklahoma State round out the first five.
The Tigers won convincingly at West Virginia on Saturday while Oklahoma won a relatively close game at home, and that seems to be the catalyst for the change at the top.
Numbers 6-10 in the newest poll are Stanford, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Oregon and South Carolina.
The Buckeyes of Ohio State are still not in the Top 25, for the second week in a row. Other teams from the Big Ten besides the Badgers and the Cornhuskers are Michigan at 19th and Illinois at 24th.
The Ohio State Buckeyes rebounded from their loss against Miami very nicely as they hammered the Colorado Buffaloes at home 37-17 behind a nice performance by freshman Braxton Miller.
Miller had 78 yards rushing and 110 through the air with two passing touchdowns to wide receiver Devin Smith.
The Buckeyes established a solid ground game against Colorado with Jordan Hall who had 87 yards rushing and a touchdown.
This was a must-win game for the Buckeyes as they head into Big Ten play.
Ohio State is looking to rebound after a disappointing loss to the Miami Hurricanes last week in which pretty much every glaring weakness on the team was exposed.
Head coach Luke Fickell felt he had seen enough of senior quarterback Joe Bauserman and decided to hand the reins over to freshman playmaker Braxton Miller, who had a great Spring but has been underwhelming in three games thus far in 2011.
Miller is the first OSU freshman to start at quarterback since Terrelle Pryor in 2008, who had been the starting quarterback up until this season obviously.
I fully expect the Buckeyes to try and pound the ball right at Colorado, who is one of the weaker teams in the Pac 12. Miller is going to need to be eased into his starting role and the Buckeyes have a solid stable of backs to be able to establish a solid ground game with guys like Carlos Hyde and even Braxton Miller from the quarterback position.
It will be interesting to see if Miller and the Buckeyes can continue to incorporate breakout tight end Jake Stoneburner into the offensive game plan. Stoneburner has caught only eight passes this season, but four have gone for touchdowns.
This is a big game for the Buckeyes, who really need a win heading into Big Ten play. Check back during the game for more updates.
After losing their first game of the season to the Miami Hurricanes, the Ohio State Buckeyes have decided to see what they have in freshman Braxton Miller, a dual-threat quarterback who was one of the top high school players in the country this past season.
Joe Bauserman wasn’t turning the ball over a lot, but he had completed only 50 percent of his passes and Ohio State’s offense has clearly been struggling.
Miller, on the other hand, was 2 for 4 against the Hurricanes and had an interception and a lost fumble, so there’s really no excuse on his part either. This is simply a move made with the future of the program in mind.
Ohio State has not started a freshman at quarterback since Terrelle Pryor back in 2008, and the Colorado Buffaloes are a good opponent for Miller to get his first start against.
Miller looked solid in Spring practices and was 8 for 12 for 130 yards in the Buckeyes’ season opener where he played about half the snaps.
The Ohio State Buckeyes suffered a tough loss to the Miami Hurricanes this past weekend, and their dismal performance resulted in the team being dropped out of the top 25 all together for the first time since this writer can ever remember.
The Buckeyes were exposed both offensively and defensively, and I found this bit from ESPN Big Ten blogger Adam Rittenberg interesting, to say the least:
Worst hangover: Plenty of people wake up feeling bad after a night in Miami, but maybe not quite like Ohio State felt Sunday morning. The Buckeyes were thoroughly exposed in their 24-6 shellacking against the Hurricanes, and their feeble offense looked like some sort of pre-World War II design. Any outside hopes of a national title are gone, and serious changes will be needed for this team to compete against the best in the Big Ten.
My question would have to be which position(s) the Buckeyes would have to switch around in order to be able to compete. They are just a very inexperienced team, having lost many of their best players either to the NFL or suspension.
I still think this is a team that you don’t want to play, especially on the road in Big Ten play, but there is no doubt that they were exposed in a big way on Saturday night in Miami.
Head coach Luke Fickell has decisions to make. Before the season, I thought the team should go with Braxton Miller as the quarterback full time, and it may be time to do that just to see what you’ve got in the kid.
The Buckeyes begin Big Ten play in two weeks, with one more out-of-conference matchup coming up against Colorado this week, a game you can watch at 3:30 Eastern time on ABC or ESPN2.
The votes are in, and Ohio State’s performance against Toledo was apparently bad enough that they dropped a spot or two in each respective poll, coming in 17th in the AP top 25 and 16th in the USA Today Coaches Poll.
Ohio State survived a scare from Toledo, who was much better than the masses thought they would be. The Rockets had a chance to take a lead late in the game but they were denied by the Buckeyes, despite leading 22-21 earlier in the contest.
The Buckeyes will be in action again next Saturday night against the Miami Hurricanes in prime time.
Four Ohio State football players who were suspended for receiving impermissible benefits at a team event earlier this offseason were reinstated on Tuesday, according to head football coach Luke Fickell.
Running back Jordan Hall, defensive backs Corey Brown and Travis Howard, as well as Jordan Whiting were all reinstated, and at least Hall and Howard figure to have an impact on Ohio State’s second regular season contest against Toledo.
Whiting was suspended last December for accepting cash and tattoo discounts last year.
Fickell also said in a press conference that the Buckeyes intend to use quarterbacks Joe Bauserman and Braxton Miller in a similar way they did in the first game, where both guys see time on the field in the way that Chris Leak and Tim Tebow split reps at Florida in 2006.
The Buckeyes may move to a more traditional package than splitting the quarterbacks virtually by half when the competition becomes tougher, but for now, this is a good way to see what they have in the youngster Braxton Miller, though Bauserman was more impressive than advertised in the first game of the year.
The week two SB Nation NCAA football rankings are hot off the press, and the Ohio State Buckeyes are ranked right in the middle of the pack at 15th in the country.
Obviously there aren’t many differing opinions on the Buckeyes between the AP, coaches, and SB Nation, as every outlet ranked them 15th in the country for week two heading into their matchup against Toledo.
Penn State, Michigan State, Nebraska, and Wisconsin joined the Buckeyes in the top 25, with Wisconsin garnering the highest ranking at 7th in the nation.
Northwestern, Michigan, Iowa, and Purdue also received votes for the top 25, which is especially interesting in the case of Purdue who has one of the weakest overall rosters in the Big Ten.
That’s why they play the games, right?
You can view the entire top 25 poll by following this link, and I find it quite curious that the LSU Tigers somehow jumped ahead of Alabama and Oklahoma, even if they played the Oregon Ducks when the other teams played weak opponents.
The biggest risers in the rankings were the Baylor Bears, who came in at 18th (up 53 spots), and the South Florida Bulls, who rank 21st (up 15 spots).
The biggest losers from the first week of action were the Oregon Ducks, who rank 14th (down 11 spots), and the Alabama Crimson Tide, who went from being the top ranked team to the third ranked team.
The Ohio State Buckeyes have moved up from the 16th slot to the top 15 in the country according to the latest USA Today Coaches Poll, which you can view in full by following this link.
They are also ranked 15th in the latest AP poll, which you can check out here.
The Buckeyes had essentially a warm-up game against Akron, who they wiped the floor with, winning 42-0. That's encouraging for Ohio State and the Buckeye faithful, as they were missing quite a few key players on both sides of the ball, as well as one of the best coaches in school and NCAA history.
Other Big Ten teams joining Ohio State on the coaches poll were 9th ranked Wisconsin, 10th ranked Nebraska, 16th ranked Michigan State, and 20th ranked Penn State. The Iowa Hawkeyes also received votes, as did Northwestern and Michigan, so you know this is going to be an extremely competitive year for the big Ten.
Ohio State will have essentially another warm-up game against Toledo next week, and one Big Ten game to really watch for is Penn State vs. Alabama, a game that could really alter the rankings one way or another.
There are, as you know if you are a Buckeyes fan, a myriad of resources to read for all things Ohio State.
In the wake of Ohio State's 42-0 win on Saturday over the Akron Zips, here are a few good "reads" for you, Buckeye fan:
Buckeye Grove on Rivals,com has all the postgame info with "Beyond the Final Whistle". This feature is available by prescription, but a free trial is available for those who would like to check it out;
Along the Olentangy is an SB Nation site that is OSU-centric and fan-driven. Don't expect any love for the Maize and Blue here!;
Check out the game recap on Yahoo! Sports.
Man, on opening day of a new football season, I wish that I were back in Ohio to share in the excitement. I may not be the world's biggest college football fan, but there is no question that the euphoria of Football Saturday is palpable.
(By the way, my only problem with college ball started over a generation ago, when I pulled like crazy for Archie Griffin when he played for the Buckeyes -- and then had to see him running all over the Browns when he was with the Bengals. It became hard for me to invest too much in players who might come back and haunt my favorite pro team. Sometimes saying that makes me feel a bit silly, but those are my reasons, and it is what it is.)
With that being said: Go Buckeyes!
The Ohio State Buckeyes must have been ready to get away from an offseason of distractions and play some football.
The Buckeyes held Akron to less than 100 yards of offense, and amassed 524 yards themselves, Joe Bauserman hit Jake Stoneburner for three TD passes, and Ohio State won their season opener in Columbus 42-0 in Luke Fickell's debut as OSU head coach.
Stoneburner became the first Buckeye tight end to ever score three times through the air in one game.
With a game-time temperature of over 90 degrees, the only thing hotter than the weather was the Ohio State defense. Akron's starting quarterback Clayton Moore managed only 54 yards through the air on 6-of-16 passing, and the Zips totaled 90 net yards, including 35 rushing and 55 through the air.
Bauserman and Smith each scored a rushing TD in a game in which the scoreboard looked very symmetrical. Ohio State went 7-14-7-14 in scoring by quarter, and of course, the outgunned Zips had nothing but zeroes to show for their efforts.
Bauserman tallied the only score of the opening quarter when he carried it in from 15 yards out. In the second quarter he took to the air, hitting Stoneburner from 28 and 11 yard to send the Buckeyes into the intermission, for all intents and purposes, already a winner.
In the third quarter Bauserman and Stoneburner hooked up for the third straight time, this time from 2 yards out, before Ohio State turned to reserve quarterback Braxton Miller for the final stanza. Miller got in on the fun with a 14-yard strike to Devin Smith, and Rod Smith capped the scoring for the Buckeyes with a 2-yard run late in the game.
Bauserman finished 12-of-16 for 163 yards and the three scores, while Miller went 8-of-12 for 130.
Ohio State won the first-down battle 28-5.
The Buckeyes will stay with in-state opponents next Saturday when they entertain the Toledo Rockets (1-0) at noon in The Horseshoe.
The Kent State Golden Flashes, meanwhile, headed to Alabama and were thrashed by the #2 Crimson Tide 48-7 in a game that the Southeast Conference power put away in the first quarter with three touchdowns.
Kent State's only score was on a 3-yard TD pass from Spencer Keith to Justin Thompson in the third quarter to make the score 24-7, but the Tide rolled to the last 24 points of the game to take away any whispers of an upset-hope for the visitors from the Mid American Conference.
Kent takes on Lousiana-Lafayette next Saturday in their home opener, while the Akron Zips will try to bounce back from today's drubbing when they entertain Temple, also next Saturday.
Local teams in action as College Football returns.
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