The Ohio State Buckeyes will be ineligible for the Big Ten championship and post season play but, they will play a big part on the Big Ten race in 2012 and potentially the discussion about who is the best team in the nation after the season is over. That is because the Buckeyes could be a lot better than most experts think. When Coach Urban Meyer took over the program in early January of this year the Buckeyes were heading for one of their worst recruiting classes in years. Then Meyer turned on the charm and finished strong on the recruiting trail and the Buckeyes finished in the top ten according to many experts.
The Buckeyes finished with a 6-7 record in 2011 but had better talent than the record indicated. The key for this season is the development of sophomore quarterback Braxton Miller. Miller who was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Year was brilliant one play and then looked lost on the next. Consistent play from him is essential for Ohio State. Also, the Buckeyes need to find a big time wide receiver. Ohio State had one of the worst passing games in the Big Ten last season and although a lot of receivers saw playing time no one stepped to the forefront. The offensive line had their problems also; Miller at times had to use his superior mobility to escape the opponents pass rush. Despite these problems Meyer has a lot of talent to work with. He has done a good job of bringing some talented freshman to plug some holes on the offensive line and some of the lineman from last season will be better with a year of experience under their belt. Meyer is an offensive genius and having him aboard the Buckeyes offense will be better in 2012.
Ohio State’s defense will be one of the best units in the nation in the NCAAF 2012 season. He will be able to rotate two complete defensive lines in a game situation without a drop off in talent. Defensive end John Simon and defensive tackle Jonathan Hankins could be the best duo in the country. Linebacker Ryan Shazier was on e of the best freshman in the Big Ten last season and he has added some much needed bulk to his frame in the off season. Cornerback Bradley Roby has the look of a All-American.
The real key to success for the Buckeyes is the schedule. Ohio State will play the first four games at home and that will give the offense time to mesh before going on the road in the Big Ten opener versus Michigan State. Then they come back home to play Nebraska the next Saturday. If the Buckeyes can survive these two tough games they could be undefeated going into the last two games of the season versus Wisconsin on the road and at home against Michigan. There is no doubt the Buckeyes will need some breaks along the way but don’t be surprised if the Buckeyes exceed expectations in the 2012 season.