Why Ohio State's 52-51 OT Win Over Maryland Should Calm Michigan Fans Nerves

Why Ohio State's 52-51 OT Win Over Maryland Should Calm Michigan Fans Nerves

Football

Why Ohio State's 52-51 OT Win Over Maryland Should Calm Michigan Fans Nerves

Should a top 10 team, with one loss be a real threat to Michigan? Sure. What if that team has had some struggles this year? Every team has issues, no team is perfect. But what if that team had to win in overtime against a team that has had off-the-field issues since week one?

Ohio State is in trouble folks.

Coming into this season, Michigan and Ohio State were bound to have a big game against each other once again. Now this game could certainly be close, but it’s looking like the tide is shifting in the Big Ten and Michigan is in the driver’s seat.

Ohio State, the king of the conference for the past decade or so, is starting to lose its grip on the conference it mostly dominated for a long time. It started when head coach Urban Meyer was involved with an investigation with his former wide receivers coach Zach Smith and Meyer would be suspended for three games, and the Buckeyes would win those three without him.

When he returned, the Buckeye nation seemed to be relaxed with their coach back and ready to lead this team for the rest of the season, but it really hasn’t been a usual 10-1 season for the Buckeyes.

It started with a nice 49-6 win against Tulane, easy as it should have been. Then they were able to go into Happy Valley and defeat Penn State, but while the Buckeyes played better, it was the coaching mistakes by James Franklin that ultimately doomed them from defeating Ohio State.

Then against Indiana, they played a close game for a half, before pulling away and winning 49-26, and again against Minnesota, only winning 30-14.

Purdue would knock the Buckeyes off in a huge way, winning 49-20 in the almost annual Ohio State gets blown out by a lot game.

But they wouldn’t rebound too well as they struggled to get rid of Nebraska, only winning 36-31, and while they did defeat Michigan State by 20, 12 of those points were handed to the Buckeyes from the Spartans, so that was really only an eight-point win.

Then in the final game before Michigan, against Maryland, Ohio State has to go into overtime to deal with them and only win by one point.

Michigan, on the other hand, has had decisive wins almost all season long. Northwestern gave the Wolverines a scare and Michigan had to come back down 17-0 to win, and Michigan State gave them a good fight and Michigan won 21-7, and even Indiana was testy, and Michigan had to win by 11.

The difference here though is Michigan came back against the Big Ten West champions, they scored 21 and put up 188 rushing yards against the best rush defense in the country.

Ohio State had to do EVERYTHING to try and stop Maryland. When has Ohio State had to struggle and pull everything out to try and beat a subpar team? Sure they can sling the ball and they had their way against Maryland’s poor secondary that left wide receivers open left and right, but against the best defense in the country, will that really happen as much as it did today?

Against the best defense in the country, will they be able to create many holes for the running backs, something the offensive line has struggled to do this season, and now up against the dominant front seven Michigan has, it’s only going to get harder.

Ohio State was known for having a good defense, not great, but still good, and since defensive end Nick Bosa left, they seemed to have taken a big step back and are letting anyone do what they want to them. Michigan does start somewhat slow on offense, but if they are able to create just one hole or have one receiver breakaway, it’s guaranteed points on the board, whether it’s a field goal or touchdown.

Michigan fans, relax for next week. It won’t be easy and it shouldn’t, Ohio State will never be easy no matter what just because of what this rivalry brings out in everyone, but don’t think this game is going to be a blowout in favor of the Buckeyes. Ohio State is a mess right now, their coach is dealing with “health issues” and more scandals off the field, and their players aren’t playing like they should, while Michigan’s coach is scandal free and the players are winning games like they should, have their names in finalists for awards, and most of all, playing like a team and a family. We have seven days until kick-off, so get ready for this bumpy ride.

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