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What They’re Saying Following Ohio State’s Win Over Akron

Local and national pundits react to the Buckeyes’ 59-7 victory over the Zips on Saturday.

Ohio State wrapped up the non-conference portion of its schedule with a 59-7 win over Akron on Saturday evening.

The Buckeyes briefly fell behind the Zips on the second drive of the game but scored 59 unanswered points under the direction of quarterbacks Kyle McCord and Jack Miller, who played in place of an injured C.J. Stroud, as well as a defense that forced two interceptions and had nine sacks.

With that said, local and national college football analysts shared some of their thoughts on the game, and BuckeyesNow has compiled some of the best reactions below:

Bill Bender, Sporting News

“Freshmen Kyle McCord and TreVeyon Henderson started in a 59-7 get-right blowout of Akron. Will that be the backfield combination for the rest of the season?

“The Buckeyes are the only one-loss team on this list, but the fact remains third-year coach Ryan Day has yet to lose a Big Ten game. Rutgers, Maryland and Indiana are the next three games on the schedule. Ohio State will be in the mix until it gets a second loss.”

Alex Scarborough, ESPN

“Beating Akron so handily was a nice way to bounce back after losing to Oregon and struggling to put away Tulsa in consecutive weeks. But now we have to keep an eye on the Ohio State quarterback situation.

“Does C.J. Stroud return to the starting lineup after nursing a shoulder injury, or will coach Ryan Day stick with Kyle McCord? McCord stepped into the starting lineup and was solid against Akron, completing 13 of 18 passes for 319 yards, two touchdowns and one interception.

“What looked like the easy part of the schedule – Rutgers, Maryland and a well-timed bye week before a challenging two-game stretch against Indiana and Penn State – now appears to be something of a proving ground with Rutgers coming off a close loss at Michigan and Maryland sitting pretty at 4-0.”

Bill Landis, The Athletic

Stroud rested with a sore right shoulder and was said to be available only in ‘an emergency situation.’ The redshirt freshman has been a bit inconsistent, so there was an opening for McCord to make this interesting. He played fine, but I’m not sure he did much to plant a seed of doubt in head coach Ryan Day’s mind. McCord was shaky early and made a bad decision on a third-quarter interception. He did settle in and flashed his arm strength, but he wasn’t picking apart Akron’s defense.

“Still, you can certainly see the potential with McCord. And he put on the kind of performance that Day could spin any way he wants. Day can highlight the flashes and say the job is open this week heading into the Rutgers game. Or he can reasonably squash any notion of a battle by saying it’s Stroud’s job as long as he’s healthy enough to play.”

Phil Harrison, Buckeyes Wire

“There are two ways to look at this Ohio State team. You can be upset because there’s simply too much youth that’s trying to get up to speed quickly. There are sure to be headaches like we’ve seen. Or, you can be excited for the future in addition to looking for growth.

“Whether it be the wide receivers, defensive line, or quarterback position, we saw a bunch of four and five start athletes doing some pretty cool things out there on Saturday night. Despite what the national folks may want to tell you, the future is just fine in Columbus.

“We might just have to be more patient than anyone that follows Ohio State wants to be.”

Marc Givler, Buckeye Scoop

The K’Vaughan Pope situation is among the wildest things, and maybe THE wildest, I have ever seen in more than a dozen years of covering Ohio State football and recruiting and remember we just went through a summer with the J.T. Tuimoloau commitment five months after Signing Day and the whole Quinn Ewers situation which saw the five-star quarterback enroll a year early while racking up hundreds of thousands of dollars in endorsement deals.

On the heels of the Dallas Gant transfer, and with the position struggling mightily this season, it is more than fair to ask what the heck is going on in the linebackers room right now. Perhaps these two situations should be telling us a lot about why there has been so much rotating going on at the position as there seems to be a lot of unhappy players in that room. Certainly starting to look like adding another linebacker to the 2022 class is trending away from a luxury and toward being a necessity.”

Mitch Stacy, Associated Press

“Akron: The Zips show early signs of being able to make it game, but the talent deficit was too much as the Buckeyes adjusted.

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“Ohio State: The Buckeyes get what amounted to a scrimmage before the bigger games resume.”

Patrick Murphy, 247Sports

“Keeping in mind this is Akron, this is the kind of half Ohio State needed, especially defensively. The Buckeyes had so much going wrong, it was hard to get any confidence. This game will help that.”

RedditCFB

“Akron causing a Buckeyes player to quit the team in the middle of the game and tweet ‘F*** Ohio State’ during the 3rd quarter should automatically cover the spread.”

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