go throughLiken Littman
Fox Sports Academy Football Writer
Columbus, OH — Ryan Day walked in OHIO Smile in the postgame interview room Saturday. Actually he was dizzy.
Yes, the second-place Buckeyes just beat the fifth- in The Roaring Horseshoe started the season with a 21-10 ranking of Notre Dame. But it wasn’t the explosive 45-point offense we all expected. It’s gritty.
Ohio State’s offense has to handle the ball, while the defense has to hone the ball and make big moves, which ties in with the Signature Day win. His team passes the ball. The main storyline for this offseason few months is how deadly Ohio State’s passing game will be, between last year’s Heisman Trophy finalist CJ Stroud and possibly the country’s best wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba. connect.
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but this is not the game won. The Ohio State coaching staff couldn’t be more excited about it.
“A lot of people have questioned our resilience this offseason, and I’m incredibly proud that we’ve won our way,” Dai said. Say.
“Who said it had to be track and field?” Ohio State offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson yelled in the tunnel after the game . “We can get down and dirty!”
Do not. 2 Ohio State better than No. 5 Notre Dame
RJ Young broke Ohio State’s 21-10 win over Notre Dame. CJ Stroud was huge for the Buckeyes, completing 24 of 34 passes for 223 yards.
Ohio State Original The game plan derailed early when Smith-Njiba faltered in the first quarter. He was thrown out of bounds after the catch, which forced him to miss the next few series. He tried to come back in the second quarter but was biased to his left. He also tried jogging courtside under the supervision of an athletic trainer, but was in and out of the injury tent.
Ohio needs to win without him.
“Yeah, it was a struggle at the beginning,” said Day, who expects Smith-Njiba to be in this week’s Come back sometime. “When we lost Jaxon, we were a little out of rhythm, couldn’t convert in the third down, very off schedule and we had to clear some penalties.
“But you know, early game, we’re a little clumsy. Again, the loss of Jaxon was a bit of a let down and we had to respond. “
Ohio State has a lot of Stroud that can use receivers like Emeka Egbuka who has 9 catches for 90 yards , while Marvin Harrison Jr. had five catches for 56 yards. Stroud also had Xavier Johnson, a former backup whose 24-yard touchdown came with 17 seconds left in the third quarter, the Buckeyes The team is up 14-10. But Smith-Njiba has a chance to win the Biletnikov Award, so when he doesn’t play, the atmosphere goes away.
Plan B is dedicated to the run, and Ohio State did it in the fourth quarter. Trevyan Henderson and Myan Williams combined for 175 yards and a touchdown. At 14 In the game, the winning 95-yard touchdown, Ohio State had 10 runs, Williams had 7, and he ran for 49 for a total of 84 at the time. He also had a catch.
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is questionable The question is how the game might have unfolded had Ohio State committed to it earlier. If Day hadn’t waited until the fourth quarter, maybe the Buckeyes would have gotten away with Notre Dame earlier.
“We had to be able to win this way, and we did,” Day said. “We had to figure out a way to win like this. Because there’s definitely going to be a game like this in the Big Ten, and Notre Dame is built like the Big Ten teams we play for. So for teams that want to run the ball, eat time, keep the offense off the court, we have to run the ball in those moments. We did it. We must do it. That’s what we’ve spent a lot of offseason saying, we have to be able to win ugly on offense and stop running on defense. This is what happened.
“They all count as the same. When you have this versatility, it will pay off in the future. So that’s what we It’s a huge start for us. We have a lot to improve and a lot to improve, but I’m so proud of our team.”
Stroud was 24 years old with 34 yards for 223 yards and 2 touchdowns and made some huge plays the rest of the way. Many of those were scrambles on the run, and it looked like he was about to go out of bounds, but here he completed a 12-yard pass to Williams and a nine-yard pass to Harrison Jr.
“I think you can see who CJ wants to be,” Day said. “He probably wants to go out there and have all these yards and stuff like that. It doesn’t matter to him. It’s about winning, and he’s a winner.”
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Notre Dame is a formidable opponent that may surprise everyone outside of South Bend . It held Ohio State’s passing yards to 99 in the first half, with a touchdown before the final three drives. For most of the game, the Fighting Irish were more dominant in the trenches, an area Ohio State has been trying to do better.
Finally, Ohio State’s defense, after a reorganization under new defensive coordinator Jim Knowles team, allowing the Irish to reach a touchdown and 253 yards total. They stopped running to hold Notre Dame to 76 yards on 2.5 yards per carry.
“The story of the night was defense,” Day said, “After the offseason talk about them, things turned around, Question their resilience.”
“We were called soft last year and had to eat it,” added security Lathan Ransom.
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There this break There was a lot of hype around Ohio State during the season. Day’s team is the favorite to win the national championship, and that seeps into the atmosphere in the home opener. Famous Buckeyes fan LeBron James walks courtside before kickoff, Jayson Tatum, Andre Iguodala, Justin Fields, Ezekiel Elliott, Joe Burrow, along with the entire 2002 Ohio State National Championship team, was also honored at the game. It took the Buckeyes a while to settle in and click, and while they enjoyed the environment, the pressure didn’t help.
“I mean, we’re playing against the fifth-best team in the country considering the game,” Straw De said. “Honestly, it was kind of weird to be there again. It was like seeing the fans, dealing with all the outside noise and trying to lock in. In the end, we won.”
Ohio State’s expectation is to win a national championship. It’s a team that truly believes in a failed 11-2 season that won the Rose Bowl last year. The Buckeyes’ goal is to beat Michigan, win the Big Ten and win the national championship. All of these things are still quite possible, but there is still work to be done. This team isn’t quite at the level of Alabama or Georgia right now, but there’s still time to get there.
“If we can keep winning games like this, that’s how we’re going to win games,” Day said. “When you can win in a different way, it says a lot about your team and I think this game will pay dividends in the future.”
Laken Litman covers college football, college basketball and soccer for FOX Sports. She has previously written for Sports Illustrated, USA Today and the Indianapolis Star. She is the author of “Strong as a Woman,” published in Spring 2022, in honor of Title IX’s 50th anniversary. Follow her on Twitter @LakenLitman .
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