Buckeyes rout Maryland: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

(Marquise McKine/The Diamondback)

When you dominate a team like Ohio State did on Saturday, there’s plenty of good and only a couple bad and ugly things throughout the game. Let’s take a look back at the Buckeyes’ 62-14 win over the Terrapins in what was the Homecoming game in Columbus:

The Good

J.T. Barrett

The redshirt senior has done quite well since Ohio State’s loss to Oklahoma, but Saturday’s game against Maryland may be his best one of the season so far. The quarterback completed 21-of-30 passes for 261 yards and three touchdowns and also contributed with eight carries for 59 yards and a touchdown as well.

Although many of his “deep throws” are due to him not throwing it that far and his receiver doing the rest of the work, Barrett’s long ball has improved quite well over the last few weeks. He will need to improve so that the three-time captain throws the ball much better against better competition.

J.K. Dobbins

Dobbins may have had a disappointing fumble, but it was due to him trying to make a play and run for extra yards, so you can’t hate on the effort. The true freshman totaled 13 carries for 96 yards and a touchdown against Maryland. On his touchdown run, the running back showed his shiftiness and athleticism in a short four-yard run.

Mike Weber

It’s quite nice to have a duo at running back like Ohio State does. Now that Weber is fully healthy, the plays and formations that head coach Urban Meyer can come up with should be fascinating moving forward.

He had 13 carries for 59 yards and a touchdown and also brought in one reception for 53 yards as well. While Meyer has mentioned it before, a formation that has both Weber and Dobbins in it. Have fun defending that one, defense.

Binjimen Victor

When you have a receiver with size like Victor, you use that to your advantage in the red zone. Barrett did just that, while the receiver brought in four catches for 55 yards and a touchdown.

Austin Mack

He may not be known for his speed, but Mack has been quite the threat on the outside over the last few games. On Saturday, he had four catches for 39 yards and a touchdown. While he is one of nine wide outs to catch a pass, Mack proved yet again that he can be reliable, whether it’s in the middle, deep, or on back-shoulder catches.

Third-down offense

It’s not anywhere near perfect, but Ohio State converted 7-of-12 third-down opportunities. If they can continue to do that against stiffer competition, that will only turn into good things as the season goes on, especially against tougher competition

Red-zone offense

It wasn’t perfect, but it was about as close as you can get.In eight red-zone opportunities, the Buckeyes scored a touchdown seven times. Now this will be hard to keep up, but it’s nice to see regardless. If Ohio state can somehow stay even close to that, they will be set for the rest of the season.

Baron Browning

In his first legitimate action of the season, the true freshman led the team with six tackles. He also had 1.5 tackles for loss, but his most impressive stat were his tackles. The linebacker was all over the field for the Buckeyes.

Nick Bosa

The Bosas (somehow) continue to impress. Like his brother, Joey, was, Nick has been in the opponent’s backfield a ton this so far this season and that continued on Saturday. The defensive end totaled five tackles, one sack, two tackles for loss, and one forced fumble that was recovered and ran back for a touchdown.

Luckily for Ohio State, the true sophomore has to stick around for (at least) one more year.

Dante Booker

For the second straight week, Booker looked quite impressive once again. Whether it was in the opponent’s backfield or in pass coverage, the linebacker was all over the place. He had four tackles, one sack, and two tackles for loss against Maryland.

Jerome Baker

When you score a touchdown as a defender, that’s when you know it’s going to be a good day. In arguably his best game so far this season, Baker accumulated  three tackles, one sack, one tackle for loss, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery that he picked up and ran 20 yards for a touchdown.

Much like most of the starters, Baker may have only played just over a half (again), but he made the most of his opportunities.

Defense as a whole

Whether it was the starters or the backups, the Silver Bullets were outstanding against Maryland. They not only allowed just 14 points, but they also forced the Terps to gain a total of 66 yards from scrimmage (50 rushing, 16 (!) passing). That right there is an incredible feat in itself. The defense stepped up and it showed.

Third-down defense

No matter how good or bad an opponent may be, if the defense holds them to convert just 1-of-15 third-down opportunities, that’s impressive either way. Maryland isn’t bad and Ohio State’s defense made it seem like they were by far the worst team in the country.

The Bad

Brandon Bowen’s leg injury

After winning the starting right guard spot in camp, Bowen has done quite well so far this season. Unfortunately, his season came to an end on Saturday after he broke both his bones in leg that required surgery. Ohio State’s depth along the offensive line will not be tested.

The Ugly

Special teams

The special teams’ units have seen much better days. Whether it was missed field goals, botched snaps, shanked punts, or allowing the opponent to return a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown, the special teams unit was horrible on Saturday. Luckily, the Buckeyes were able to work passed it, but that won’t be the case later in the season.

Against better competition, they must improve or else they’re going to cost Ohio State big time. Meyer commented on their struggles following the game.

Field goal. A young freshman gave up a little blocked punt — blocked field goal. Our punter did not hit, the freshman punter didn’t hit it very well. And then a veteran kicker, I’m still befuddled with,” he said. “We’re the only team in the country that can’t kick the ball down the field. It’s something I have to strongly evaluate and find out why. And then obviously kick return, you know, part of our kickoff, a big part of our kickoff is kick the ball on target. And we’re not on target. So that’s something to work on and get fixed. And there’s a lot of people upset about that and I’m one of them. We’ll find out.