COLUMBUS, Ohio – It was the offense vs. the defense for around 130 snaps Saturday in Ohio Stadium with Ohio State’s offense and defense competing for the right and honor to wear the scarlet practice jerseys until spring ball next year. The offense prevailed despite scoring just one touchdown, 53-48, to earn the scarlet jersey privilege for the first time since…well, since sometime around the spring of 2008.
Ohio State coach Jim Tressel, who met with about 30 members of the media following the scrimmage, was pleased with the day overall and he wasn’t too concerned that the offense only scored the one touchdown.
“I root for our defense, too,” Tressel said. “Our defense doesn’t give up many big plays. We pride ourselves on not giving up big plays.”
Pryor and the TD Terrelle Pryor, set to quarterback the team for a third year, unofficially was somewhere around 10-for-24 passing for about 151 yards and the one touchdown, which definitely happened. It came on a 25-yard pass to Taurian Washington coming across the middle left to right. He sprinted about 15 yards untouched into the end zone to extend the offense’s lead to 47-38.
Tressel felt the only significant offensive note/stat of the day was the fact the team only had one turnover in all of those plays.
“Our offense only turned it over once,” Tressel said. “When you only do that in 140 plays, you’re probably going to win.”
The Missing and The Limited Numerous players did not compete today but none of them had any major issues, according to Tressel. He noted Nathan Williams’ injury is the most significant, but he also said he wouldn’t bet against him missing the opener.
Others of note who did not play today included both starting cornerbacks – Chimdi Chekwa and Devon Torrence – and starting receiver Dane Sanzenbacher. Playing but limited in their time on the field was defensive stalwarts Cameron Heyward and Ross Homan.
Because We’ve Got the Skills The scrimmage was closed to the general public with players’ families and the media allowed to watch. But high above in the press box was a dozen or so members of the official football game day statistical team. The group was prepping for the season opener in 12 days. A peek at their work after the game revealed (and please note these are unofficial stats)…
Kicks Between DB and DB Senior Devin Barclay and freshman Drew Basil had some field goal opportunities during the scrimmage. Barclay was 2-for-3 with makes from 24 and 53 yards and a miss from 42 yards. Basil missed three times from 54 yards or longer but connected on 46- and 18-yard attempts.
Five CBs Would be Good Tressel said he’s looking forward to Chimdi Chekwa and Devon Torrence to get healthy because they combine for a lot of game experience. In the meantime, though, he said sophomore Travis Howard, freshman Dominic Cornerback and freshman Corey “Pittsburgh” Brown are getting better every day.
“We want Devon and Chimdi in there but it will be huge to have a third, fourth and fifth corner.”
No Problem Tressel said that Terrelle Pryor isn’t bothered this year that he’s wearing the black jersey in scrimmages and thus he can’t be hit, but he also can’t escape from a grasp to start an improvised run.
“Terrelle is so glued in to progressing with everything he is doing,” Tressel said. “It is a nuisance being in black, but he knows when the day comes to wear the normal jersey it will be like freedom. He’s had a great preseason.”
At Left Tackle Tressel said that both junior Mike Adams and senior Andrew Miller are coming along at the left tackle position and he is pleased with them both and “we’re going to need them both.”
Sweat Won’t Redshirt Juniors Andrew Sweat and Etienne Sabino are in a battle at “sam” linebacker. Sweat started with the first unit today with Sabino working mostly with the second unit, but he did move up to No. 1 later on.
“Nobody would say it [the competition at linebacker] is finished,” Tressel said.
Tressel said it really hurt losing Sweat last year to injury and that he will play this year. He said he had heard talk of Sweat redshirting this year, but he said that wasn’t going to happen.
“He’s too good to redshirt,” Tressel said. “The 2010 Buckeyes need him.”
Hall Will Redshirt Sophomore offensive lineman Marcus Hall, a reserve in nine games for the Buckeyes last season, will practice with the team and redshirt the 2010 season while retaining three seasons of eligibility.
“He is able to practice but it hurts anytime you lose someone on your two-deep,” Tressel said. “We have to be positive about it and the upside is he’ll have a fifth year.
Norwell Steps Up True freshman Andrew Norwell moved into Marcus Hall’s backup right tackle position Saturday and drew nice praise from Tressel.
“It’s going to be interesting watching him,” Tressel said. “I’m very impressed with him. We rolled him into the No. 2 position some today. We’ll see if he can be a fourth tackle for us, but I’m not sure we can answer that yet.”
Between Now and Sept. 2 Tressel said the main things he would like to see happen between now and game day Sept. 2 vs. Marshall is for the team to get healthy and to whittle down all of the offensive and defensive sets in the playbook and start tailoring some game plans.
No. 2 in the AP Poll The Associated Press Top 25 poll was released today and Ohio State is ranked No. 2 behind Alabama, which received 54 of 60 first place votes.
More from the AP:
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – In the scrimmage held every August between Ohio State’s offensive and defensive units, the Buckeyes ran 140 plays and scored one touchdown.. And that was enough to win.. Amazingly, that was fine with coach Jim Tressel.. “Whenever you have fireworks, I think you’ve got some…… More »