Posted: 3:21 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013
By Chris Kopech
Losing to North Dakota State or Towson it wasn't – but don't try and tell Ohio State partisans that. Perhaps the worst thing Urban Meyer's 2013 Buckeyes did in their debut was set expectations too high by explosively (and seemingly almost effortlessly) starting the game off with a 23-0 lead (including two quick strike touchdowns and two subsequent trick play 2-point conversions). The second and third quarters devolved into an uneven demonstration of a combination of inadequate hydration and inconsistency before OSU regained their collective footing and left victorious, 40-20.
Jordan Hall had a career high 21 carries for 159 yards, 2 TDs, and a two point conversion scamper, setting the tone for the Buckeyes. Braxton Miller was solid though nowhere near as spectacular as his best in 2012 completing 15-of-22 passes for 178 yards and 2 TDs (though he did have one brutal INT in which he failed to see UB star LB Khalil Mack and threw a pick-6). Miller also ran the ball 15 times for 71 yards, 41 of them coming on one impressive long run.
Though much of the sports talk radio and message board discussion in central Ohio this week will center around the inability for the Buckeyes to avoid cramps, the unevenness of the defense (264 yards allowed though they did hold the Bulls to just 2-for-13 on third down tries), and perhaps the lackluster play of starting right tackle Taylor Decker, OSU did lay the foundations for potential future success later this fall. If the Bucks can manage to stay healthy and make sure their best shows up more often than not, they should still have every chance to continue the run last year's special 12-0 year started.