No sacks, no takeaways, one tackle for loss.
That about sums up the effectiveness of the Buckeye defense against a physical, gritty Oregon rushing attack on Saturday afternoon.
Give them credit for coming up big when they had absolutely no choice. I'm not criticizing effort here, it's execution malfeasance.
Down a touchdown half way through the fourth quarter, the Silver Bullets finally held Oregon to a 3-and-out for the first time all game to give the offense a chance. In fact, they forced the Ducks 3-and-out on back-to-back possessions late in the fourth quarter.
But the offense couldn't dig out of the hole the defense put them in. Ohio State had 636 yards of total offense. You should never, ever lose a game when you have numbers like that.
The lack of energy and creativity in the defense today was extremely frustrating. The Ducks did to Ohio State what most teams can't - they ran it down the Buckeyes throat, didn't turn it over, and forced the Silver Bullets to be reactionary in so many aspects. Ohio State couldn't really afford to bring additional pressure because the Ducks were so efficient and balanced in their attack.
Oregon had four rushing touchdowns, basically all on the same play (runs or shovel passes, sending the ball carrier toward the left pylon). That is unacceptable. Ohio State's scheme felt basic and Oregon overpowered the Buckeye front seven all game.
The defensive line couldn't get any leverage at all in heightened moments. Anthony Brown had all day to throw. The Silver Bullets didn't register a single sack and had one tackle for loss all afternoon.
I actually thought the secondary did a pretty good job when they were in man-to-man coverage today. Cam Brown especially played well in his first game this year after missing last week with an injury.
This one hurt. The Buckeyes' College Football Playoff chances aren't completely over, but that road just got a whole lot more difficult.
Granted, the Silver Bullets have seen arguably two of the most productive running backs in college football the opening two weeks of the season. But this can't continue. Allowing a team to run for 250 yards on your home field is not the standard the Buckeyes set.
We'll have plenty more reaction coming as the day progresses.
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