This game looked ugly in the first half. It looked like there may have been an upset brewing in this game. The Ohio State football team struggled to move the ball efficiently in the first half and were actually losing at halftime 14-10 and it looked like they were scared to throw the ball.
Everything changed in the second half. C.J. Stroud turned it around and was actually able to throw four touchdowns in the second half and was able to turn it on. He went 5/8 for 236 yards and four touchdowns. That stat line is a bit misleading, but it’s still great. It was enough for a 45-31 win.
The Buckeyes had a lot of yards after the catch. Chris Olave had a lot of those. He finished the game with 4 catches for 117 yards and 2 touchdowns. Both touchdowns were full of yards after the catch. Olave made both of those touchdowns, although Stroud did have a good throw on Olave’s first score.
TreyVeon Henderson had a heck of a start to his Ohio State football career. He had a 70-yard touchdown catch on a swing pass. It was a burst of speed that never had a chance to be stopped. He only carried the ball twice for 15 yards, but he looked good in both carries.
Garrett Wilson had 5 catches for 80 yards and a touchdown as well. He looked good but did have a couple of drops too. The running game is what helped Stroud be so successful though. Miyan Williams broke off a 71-yard touchdown run in the first half. He finished with 9 carries for 125 yards and that long score.
The Buckeyes finished with 26 carries for 201 yards and a touchdown as a team. The running game can be better next week, and it should certainly be the focal point of the offense for the rest of the season. It’s how this offense needs to be run.
The defense actually wasn’t as bad as the score indicated. The secondary actually played pretty well. Ryan Watts and Denzel Burke looked good at corner. The problem was that the defense switched personnel every series, so that made it hard for the defense to get a rhythm.
Haskell Garrett did have a 32-yard fumble return for a touchdown off a Zach Harrison strip-sack. That was by far the best play defensively and was a big play in this game in general. The defense needs to improve before next week when Oregon comes to town.