NCAA Football

Ask the LGHL: Will Ryan Day’s offensive game be any different against TTUN?

Ask the LGHL: Will Ryan Day’s offensive game be any different against TTUN?

Ask the LGHL: Will Ryan Day’s offensive game be any different against TTUN?

Every day throughout Ohio State football season, we’ll be asking and answering questions about the team, college football, and anything else on our collective minds of varying degrees of importance. If you have a question you want to ask, you can tweet us @LandGrant33 or if you need more than 280 characters, send an email HERE.

Q: Will Ryan Day’s offensive game be different against TTUN?

Ever since Ohio State football’s offensively stagnant Jim Tressel era, whenever a game looked particularly painfully conservative and woefully uncreative, my dad liked to say something like, “They’re just saving good plays for Michigan.

Although the offense has changed and improved dramatically in the two coaching terms since the Senator left town, my father still often repeats the refrain that Urban Meyer stopped caring about innovation in the offense and when Ryan Day gets so stubborn that he forgets he has the best collection of receiving talent in the country to play with.

I’ve been very open about my feelings that Ryan Day should relinquish his play-calling duties in favor of someone who can focus on it full-time while watching the game from the box, but I’ve also talked myself into a 180° turn. Is it possible that after two decades of using a well-worn cliché as a crutch, my father might be right? Ohio State’s head coach playing the entire season with a team up north?

Don’t get me wrong, the offense looked terrific for most of the season, but there were so many times when what Ryan Day was doing on offense seemed to go against what made logical sense given his team’s specific talents, and the fact that the coach himself spoke about his offensive philosophy.

Even Day said the little yardage issues had him figuratively banging his head against the wall, which at the time made me yell, “Man, you’re the one calling the plays, then do something else!”

But now I’m starting to think he’s just been playing with the sand all season. Whether it’s the regressive short yardage calls, the insistence on calling a bubble screen that never worked, the lack of short and intermediate passes over the middle, the generally vanilla, uninspired play design, I’m really starting to think that Day was just doing what had to be done , to make it 12-0, damn, stylish points.

Of course, Ohio State hasn’t had to think too outside the box to win most of its games this season, so Day could take some risks without taking any risks at all. He’s betting on his team’s ability to get them to the point they’re at now without having to dig too deep into their sack of offensive tackles.

Call it blind homerism looking for reasons to think the Buckeyes have an unanticipated advantage over their opponents, or just dumb optimism from a coach who has shown flashes of brilliance in the past but has been pretty pedestrian this season. Either way, I think Day has more than a few tricks up his sleeve. I believe he may have a whole new coat to wear on Jim Harbaugh to prove he’s worked his ass off and deserves to be at third base.

I may be expecting a disappointment on Saturday, but until I’m proven wrong (which happens pretty much every Saturday), I expect Ryan Day to come up with a completely different, exciting, creative game plan on Saturday against the Wolverines.

Now, if we can just get Larry Johnson to stop rotating the second and third team linemen during the most important matchups, I will be a very happy fan and will never again be happy for a head coach to prove me wrong.





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