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Numbers, Statistics and Lies: Ohio State Edition

A Blackshirt had himself quite a game, progress toward 1000 yard seasons, and a look ahead to Illinois

Nebraska v Ohio State Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

That was a strange, strange game. It felt like both coaches had a sense of urgency right away. Go for it on fourth down on your first drive. Surprise onside kick (LOLOLOLOL!!)

Remember when a team played Nebraska and, even if they won, didn’t want to play Nebraska again anytime soon? The Husker strength and conditioning (and depth) isn’t at the point yet where they can batter an opponent, but I got the distinct impression that the Buckeyes view the Huskers very differently now.

When joining a conference like the Big Ten, you expect to play teams like Ohio State and Michigan (sorry Rutgers). I, for one, am glad the Buckeyes are on the Husker schedule for the next few years. Regardless of who the head coach may be five years from now, the Bucks are generally the type of program Nebraska should want to play.

If you compare the color-coded pile to past weeks, the defensive section turned redder in a few areas.

Lie: Oh No - the Blackshirts are regressing!

I think any Husker fan watching the game agrees that the defense acquitted themselves nicely against an offense that was, statistically anyway, a top 10 outfit. Whatever Coach Chinander showed the Bucks early on, it appeared that OSU felt their best chance was to RunTheDangBall, something they haven’t done very well all season long.

Yes, the Buckeyes had a good day on the ground, but that was a far sight better than watching the ball sail repeatedly over the heads of the Husker defensive backfield (as was the case for the first Buckeye touchdown). I am no X’s and O’s person, but it appeared to my eyes that the hosses up front were keeping their linebackers pretty clean. If the Buckeye backs broke through the line, they seemed to find some room to operate but attempts to get to the perimeter were met with a seemingly never-ending flow of white jerseys.

JoJo Domann had himself a game, didn’t he? He had seven total tackles, including one for a loss, a sack (that appeared to be a play that affected Haskins mentally), a forced fumble, and pass breakup. He also had to leave the game twice for injuries. Domann appears to be the defense’s Swiss Army Knife equivalent to JD Spielman on offense. Get healthy young man!

March Toward 1000

-Devine Ozigbo is at 796 yards rushing. He needs 204 yards (68 yards/game) to be the first back since Ameer Abdullah to cross into quadruple digits.

-JD Spielman is at 747 and Stanley Morgan Jr at 725 yards. Spielman needs 84 yards/game and Morgan 92 yards/game to reach the promised land.

Opponent Color Coded Pile

Illinois is coming off a beatdown of Minnesota. The color coded pile says they aren’t good at much, but they have a potent rushing attack, led by former Husker QB AJ Bush. Bush will be motivated to show he has the goods after he couldn’t earn the job for the Huskers (that seems like forever ago!)

Illinois’ defensive coordinator resigned a week or so ago and head coach Lovie Smith has taken over playcalling duties on that side of the ball. I first looked at the sea of red in the defensive section of the Illini color-coded pile and began to rub my hands in glee at the thought of what 2AM and Co. could do. I still feel pretty good about Nebraska’s chances to put up points and yards, but expect Lovie can keep things a little more under control than his former DC (I hope not, but Lovie is a better coach than most people give him credit for...because Illinois.)

What do you see Corn Nation? Any thoughts on the numbers and stats or have any lies I should look into?