Game Two : Ohio State 36, Miami 24

In hindsight, it really wasn’t about revenge. Once that ball was kicked off, it became just another non-conference game.

As much as the Fiesta Bowl controversy was a subplot, it finally felt light years away once this one was underway.

So easy for many to get caught up in the hype as it’d been eight seasons since Miami and Ohio State met somewhere besides a message board, newspaper article, YouTube clip or on ESPN Classic. As soon as both squads finally took the field, it was impossible to revel in ancient history. You simply felt this was a new era, fresh season, new players and different set of circumstances. Win or lose, somehow the demons were exorcised, though never forgotten.

Everyone knew how badly Miami wanted this one, but that desire didn’t translate into focus and the perfection needed to pull the road upset.

From the get go, this was colossal. You could feel it. Road game at the Horseshoe. No. 2 team in the land. Heisman-candidate quarterback. Talented squad (which some have penciled in the title game.) Raucous Midwestern fan base that lives for little other than the nationally-hated program the obsess over.

Win or lose, it was the main stage and had the feeling of a BCS showdown. In the end, another loss in the ‘rivalry’ – which will have loud-mouthed Ohio State faithful bumping their gums, employing the same narrow-mindedness Miami faithful spent the last eight years listening to.

The stats were damn near even, but revisionist history will have them calling this one a beat-down until the teams meet again next September in South Florida.

Is Ohio State is a good squad? Absolutely. A great one? Too early to tell. Regardless, they embodied the word ‘team’ as they pulled together, got it done, capitalized on turnovers and most importantly, played mistake-free, fundamental football.

No way were they going to give this thing away like Miami did.

Months of pregame chatter predicted the Buckeyes ‘manhandling’ the Canes in the trenches. Big Ten faithful continued pointing to the bowl loss against Wisconsin, oft playing the “if they did that to you, imagine what we’ll do to you” card. Ohio State swore this would be the men against the boys. It wasn’t. Miami proved it could go into a hostile environment, hanging four quarters with one of the better teams in the land. It simply turned the ball over too many times to gauge how close to being ‘back’ the Canes are.

You go into every game looking for a win, but as growing team looking to get better every week, you have to assess what went wrong while building on what went right. There are no moral victories, but UM fans have every right to wonder where this one might’ve gone had Jacory Harris been a playmaker instead of a back breaker.

The Buckeyes got the win, solidified their No. 2 ranking and enter next week undefeated while the Canes have to regroup for a three-game, season-defining stretch; @Pittsburgh, @Clemson and Florida State.

Cite the scoreboard and win column all day long because that’s what ultimately matters, but any superfan ranting and raving about the blowout this could’ve, should’ve and would’ve been – point them to the nearest box score for some perspective.

Miami had 19 first downs to Ohio State’s 21 and was 7-15 on third downs, compared to 6-18 for the Buckeyes. OSU totaled 414 total yards to UM’s 352. Harris threw for 232 yards while Terrelle Pryor went for 233.

On the ground, Miami backs combined for 120 yards while three Buckeye ball carriers ran for 181 (113 coming from Pryor). Time of possession was 31:11 to 28:49 in OSU’s favor.

Miami shot itself in the foot with eight penalties (Ohio State had two), but no more glaring stat than turnover margin; Ohio State was flawless while the Canes coughed it up four times – each more detrimental than the next:

– A deflection deep in Miami territory on the first possession put UM in a hole. A heads up play by a Buckeye defender, but how often is a teammate waiting in the wings when another bats a ball directly into his hands? Skill resulted in the play being broken up. Luck sent it into a teammate’s mitts for the interception.

– In the second quarter, an errant pass to a wideout who had his back to the ball. Harris had his sights set on Travis Benjamin the whole play and never looked off another receiver. The turnover was gift wrapped for Chimdi Chekwa.

– Later in the quarter, another mishap involving Benjamin, though in this case credit Chekwa for battling for this one and taking possession. He looked it in after a rattled Benjamin failed to make a play. No excuse for that one, No. 3.

– Early in the third, down 26-17, Miami is driving with a chance to pull within two and Harris throws behind Damien Berry, into the arms of Cameron Heyward, who rumbled 80 yards with the nail-in-the-coffin pick. Credit Ohio State for dropping a defensive lineman into zone coverage, but Harris needs to put that ball on the money and for the umpteenth time during the contest underthrew, overthrew or short-armed a pass to an open receiver.

Four turnovers for Miami, none for Ohio State, relatively even stats and a 12-point differential. Hardly the ass-kicking OSU folk sell it as, though it won’t stop them from running their big mouths.

Two days later, Miami’s special teams scores are considered flukes. “Take those two returns away and you only scored ten points!” emailed one delusional Buckeye. Another was quick to note, “If we didn’t settle for field goals and scored more touchdowns, it’d have been 56-10!” (.. and if Harris threw four more touchdowns instead of interceptions the Canes would’ve rolled. Both are a huge, pointless “if”.)

Those two sentiments pretty much sum up Miami’s hatred for all things Ohio State. Never gracious in victory and forever delusional while embellishing how the actual contest played out.

The Fiesta Bowl came down to a bogus flag in overtime after both teams battled to 17-17 in regulation, yet Buckeyes nationwide spent the following eight years defending their tainted title (instead of simply relishing in their victory), selling it like they rolled Miami the way Florida ultimately owned them four seasons later.

A kickoff or punt return for score were considered ‘breakdowns’ in their eyes, giving no credit to the Canes for having speedy and talented return men and solid blocking.

The past eight years were spent ripping Miami for not being tough enough to get into the end zone from the one-yard line in double overtime, but the Canes holding the Buckeyes to five field goals this past Saturday – viewed as mistakes by the OSU offense instead of crediting UM’s defense for tightening up in crunch time.

Turnovers gave Ohio State a short field on several occasions and in most cases, Miami’s defense won the battle:

– Harris’ first turnover came in Miami territory. Ohio State took over on the UM 25-yard line. Momentum on the bad guys’ side, the Buckeyes went 18 yards in seven plays. 1st and 10 from the UM 13-yard line, OSU mustered up six yards over the next three plays and settled for a field goal on 4th and 4.

– Late second quarter Ohio State took over on the Miami 28. OSU moved the ball 24 yards in nine plays. With a 1st and goal from the UM 6-yard line, the Buckeyes gained two yards over the next three plays, again settling for three.

– Harris turned the ball back over one play later and Miami’s overworked defense was back on the field. Ohio State took over at the UM 27 and after picking up a first down, faced a 1st and goal from the Canes 7-yard line. The Buckeyes gained three yards over three plays and again took the gimmie three.

– Harris early third quarter pick resulted in a touchdown, but late in the third quarter the defense again sacked up. Facing a 1st and 10 from the UM 13, Ohio State gained six yards on three plays and again kicked on 4th and 4 from the Miami 7.

– Early fourth quarter, up 36-24, Ohio State reached the Miami 14-yard line, lost two yards on three plays and again had another field goal attempt, this one sailing wide one a 4th and 14 from the UM 15.

On five red zone occasions Miami shut Ohio State’s offense down, yet an over-the-top fan base continues to cite Pryor kneeling out the final drive, as if it was fait accompli that the Buckeyes would’ve pushed the lead to 43 with ease.

More one-sided “would’ve, could’ve” chatter from one of the most hated fan bases nationwide, completely dismissing the fact their supposed Heisman-worthy quarterback failed to find the end zone on the majority of his red zone attempts.

But don’t just take that from this little ol’ biased blog. CBS Sportsline echoed the same sentiment.

“Bucknuts can celebrate because they got the Showdown Saturday win, 36-24 over No. 12 Miami. But what did we learn here? That Harris still has a troubling career-long trend of throwing interceptions. There were four on Saturday that turned into 20 Ohio State points,” said national columnist Dennis Dodd.

“Take away those mistakes — which, of course, you can’t — and Miami was Ohio State’s equal. Harris was Pryor. Pryor was Harris. Two immensely talented quarterbacks still searching.”

Ohio State didn’t bring their best game, but brought a much more complete effort than Miami. When Harris wasn’t firing passes to the guys in red, he was overthrowing receivers – twice missing Benjamin and the dependable Leonard Hankerson. When putting it where he needed to, both Aldarius Johnson and Chase Ford had key drops. Credit the Buckeyes defense where due, but it proved to be another big time game where Miami failed to get out of its own way at the most crucial moments.

On the other side of the ball, when Pryor actually was off the mark, again Miami failed to capitalize. Ray Ray Armstrong let an errant pass sail through his arms while DeMarcus Van Dyke celebrated a break up that had every reason to be picked off. When facing No. 2 on the road, you can’t trip all over yourself offensively (Miami did) and you have to make the other team pay when the opportunities are there (the Canes didn’t).

Championship-caliber teams have to make plays. Ten years ago Santana Moss talked about big time players stepping up in big games, moments after knocking off top-ranked Florida State. Who stepped up for the Canes this past weekend outside of a few special teams speedsters? Opportunities were there all day, yet when it was time to get the job done, UM folded on many levels.

A year ago this month Miami took a 2-0 record to Blacksburg, Virginia and found itself in 21-0 halftime hole. Everything that could go wrong in the first half did. A fumble on the first offensive series. A quick score given up due to the short field and momentum shift. A defensive back slipping in the rain, giving up a 48-yard touchdown strike (thrown by a quarterback not known for his strong arm or accuracy). A blocked punt returned for six.

The Canes adjusted at the half, got the quick score, forced a three-and-out and just over three minutes into the second half, started a drive that could narrow the gap. After driving 41 yards, two key drops sucked the life out of Miami’s offense. A shot at 21-14 quickly turned into 24-7 and game over, for all intents and purposes.

Miami let a similar opportunity slip away in Columbus, when mistakes of that nature are supposed to be a thing of the past.

Down 26-17, the Canes started the third quarter with a bang. Harris found Mike James for six yards, followed by a 19-yard haul in by Benjamin, trying to atone for his sins. Berry took the rock back-to-back plays, gaining 48 yards and putting Miami on the OSU 6-yard line.

False start, Canes – again slapping prosperity in the face. A quick two-yard run by Lamar Miller was followed by an incomplete, short-armed pass to a well-covered Hankerson. On 3rd and goal from the nine, Harris locked on to Berry, put the pass a yard behind him and Heyward snatched it – and all momentum – rumbling 80 yards to the UM 15.

Ohio State fans will wear out their arms patting themselves on the back, but again you have to wonder why Miami seems to freeze up in moments they used to live for. You also question why offensive coordinator Mark Whipple would look to a somewhat cutesy play instead of using the height of a LaRon Byrd in the end zone.

Miami has height at receiver and entering this weekend Ohio State’s secondary was one of few perceived weaknesses. Inside the ten-yard line on second and third down, both receivers were thrown to a few yards shy of the goal line, leaving it on them to find a way to paydirt even had they caught the ball.

Hurricane mistakes allowed the Buckeyes to keep building a lead, eventually insurmountable and forcing Miami to abandon the running game, needing to get pass-happy as time dwindled.

For the emotionally-fueled fan, this one hurt and you’ll remain unable to see past the loss to hated Ohio State. You refuse to acknowledge any growth, you’ll pound your fist as this was a “must win” game and you’ll refuse to take any good from where this team is and where it’s headed, once working out the kinks.

If you slow your roll and allow logic to prevail, you’ll realize things aren’t as bad as they seem after the fact. The good and bad in a nutshell:

– All the talk leading up to this game had opposing critics talking about Miami being blown away in the trenches, a la Wisconsin in last year’s bowl game. That wasn’t the case in the least. Miami’s young offensive line hung tough with Ohio State’s defensive unit and while the Canes d-line and linebackers didn’t take over the game, but they weren’t a liability and had a respectable outing against what some will say is the best team in the nation.

Turnovers did Miami in, but stats-wise, the Canes went toe-to-toe with the Buckeyes; something that wouldn’t have been the case the past few seasons. Whether you want to admit that today or not, it’s growth.

– There’s little solace in a moral victory, but two games into the season if you’re gauging where UM is at – this team has the talent of a top ten squad. It simply needs to step up and start playing like one.

– As good as the defense looked at times, it still needs to learn how to close. When would-be interceptions hit you in the mitts, you have to reel them in. J12 may be one cool customer, but anytime you’re throwing multiple picks a game, it gets into your head. Would’ve been nice to see Miami’s defense make Pryor pay at least once and to get one back for the Canes’ offense. To Harris’ credit, he’s a momentum guy and he can shake off a bad play. Give your offense the short field for once, Miami D.

As a team, learn how to close. Focus. Seize opportunities. Make plays. Steal momentum … especially in a huge road game.

– Even with turnovers piling up, the Canes never folded. Tough road venue. Mistakes happening at inopportune times. UM never backed down. All those times Ohio State took over in the red zone and Miami manned up, holding them to three – something to build on.

Two years back the Canes had one of the worst red zone defenses in the nation. Game two of this young season it held the Buckeyes to a slew of field goals. While it’s of little solace in a loss, the Canes’ defense needs to build on that. Shutting down Pryor at home and keeping a good squad out of the end zone five times – it’s proof this defense is growing up, but isn’t fully where it needs to be.

– Miami has playmakers again. Miller looked spectacular on that kickoff return and UM found an answer in Benjamin as a punt returner, after booting last year’s star Thearon Collier off the team this off-season.

Big special teams returns and field position battles – they were always a staple for good Miami teams and as this year goes on, that is a new facet that the team can rely on. Special teams needs to be an asset, not a liability. The Canes finally have some ballers who are making plays – even in road games and hostile environments. Blocking so speedsters can do their job – that looks under control. Tackling when the other guys have the ball and winning the field position battle … long way to go.

– There’s been a lot of talk about Jacory versus his alter ego J12. The junior quarterback rolled into Columbus rocking a sweater vest, days after being seen on campus shirtless in a pair of Oakland Raiders overalls. Harris is also a Twitter fiend, oft commenting, jibber-jabbering and having fun with his celeb status.

I believe Harris can be a good one, but until the touchdowns start replacing the interceptions it’s time for No. 12 to speak softly and carry a bigger stick. Fall off the radar a bit. Show it on the field, instead of broadcasting it via the Internet, leaving yourself open to more criticism and putting added pressure on yourself.

This is Jacory’s junior season and year two as a starter, this is the time that great quarterbacks and supposed to take that giant leap forward. Harris had 17 last season and is already up to four after 1.5 games. Ohio State may be the best defense he sees all year, but Saturday’s mistakes weren’t all forced by a great defense – some were mistakes by a quarterback who should know better and a supporting cast that he needs to reel in and lead.

Time for Harris to grow up overnight, putting last year’s mistakes in the rear view. If not, doesn’t matter who is left on the schedule – multiple interceptions a game will hurt, whether you’re facing a Florida State or Florida A&M. Miami will go as far as Harris will take them and this can’t be another turnover-marred season. Period.

At day’s end, coaches coach these kids up to the best of their ability … but they can’t make plays for them. Harris knows where he’s supposed to put the ball and these guys in the secondary know when an opposing quarterback puts one in your mitts, you have to haul it in, make a play and change the course of the game.

A few years back you could blame an inexperienced staff for not getting the most out of inexperienced players. Not the case anymore. Miami coaches had a good enough game plan to win this game and at this phase of the rebuilding project, a junior quarterback and junior wideout simply cannot make freshman mistakes. Same to be said for unfocused defensive backs.

Lastly, for those still wallowing in this loss, look at the current state of the ACC as well as the slew of upsets that have already taken place two weeks into this season.

Then No. 10 Virginia Tech fell to No. 3 Boise State in a heartbreaker … and five days later is upended by lowly James Madison, making the Hokies the second ranked team to ever lose to a Division I-AA opponent.

Entering last Monday, the Hokies were a top ten team thinking national championship. A week later they’re out of the top 25 and started their season 0-2. Just like that.

Florida State garnered a ton of hype after beating down lowly Samford – to the point where many across the nation were talking ‘upset’ regarding this past weekend’s road trip to Oklahoma. The only ones upset were Seminole faithful who made the road trip to Norman. Final score, 47-17, with FSU scoring a touchdown on the game’s final play, padding the stats.

The Noles surrendered 394 yards through the air, turned it over three times and had 12 penalties. It was the third-worst beating Florida State has seen since 1991.

For a team that is supposed to be inching its way back (even predicted to win the ACC by some), this was a huge blow and one of the worst losses the Noles have suffered in decades. It was also a weak outing for the hyped Christian Ponder, who only mustered up 113 yards through the air and had zero touchdowns to two interceptions.

Defending ACC champs Georgia Tech fell 28-25 at Kansas – a middle of the road Big XII squad that lost to North Dakota State last weekend. The Yellow Jackets moved the ball fairly, but couldn’t score against a very average and deflated football team. Next up, North Carolina and a grudge match between two Coastal teams that can’t afford a big conference loss out the gate, after already suffering early season letdowns.

Virginia hung tough but lost at Southern Cal while Wake Forest gave up 48 to Duke, scoring 54 in the win.

Even in defeat, this should be a time for optimism at The U. Losing to Ohio State hurts, but Miami fought a good fight and handed away a winnable game. Temporarily crushing, but not season-defining. Ten games remain and this was a non-conference showdown with no bearing on the conference race and potential BCS berth. At best, the Canes were considered a dark horse for the national title this year, while last weekend’s opponent is expected by many to reach Glendale.

Some will still scream “ACC or bust”, which remains pointless as Shannon isn’t going anywhere at season’s end – but based on the conference competition (and the fact that Miami showed it could play with Ohio State), there absolutely is that much more pressure to win the Coastal and get to Charlotte.

Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech have proven beatable. Florida State’s defense is in shambles. Clemson returns a solid quarterback but as shell of the running game they had last season. Duke, Virginia and Maryland are all lower-tier, beatable teams, while North Carolina remains in hot water and will most likely have depth problems by the time November rolls around.

While on the road to recovery, it is about taking steps forward and even in a loss, Miami did that this past weekend. Those Canes too jaded to believe that, go back and watch the tape. Even with three first half interceptions, UM hung tough and was in position to close the gap to two … before interceptions number four. Recent Cane squad would’ve folded. This one fought to the end and whether you can admit it or not, that’s progress.

A national championship is always what you aspire for in Miami, but an ACC title berth and BCS game are absolutely a tangible goal when sizing up the rest of the conference this year.

Regroup. Focus. Take care of business. ‘No Excuses’, right?

Get out there and prove next Thursday at Pittsburgh. Still a lot of football to be played this fall. Rise up.



22 thoughts on “Game Two : Ohio State 36, Miami 24

  1. I didnt get to see the game, but sounds like the U defense played very well.

    Anyway, who would you root for in a game this season: Gators Vs. Buckeyes at a neutral site?

  2. Anyway, who would you root for in a game this season: Gators Vs. Buckeyes at a neutral site?

    An earthquake.

    A plane crash.

    A terrorist attack.

    An anthrax breakout.

    A hole to open mid-field, sucking in every player and opposing fan.

    Seriously, neither. Loathe both fan bases immensely for different reasons and both hate Miami, so we have every reason to hate back.

    Florida winning gives them bragging rights and help on the recruiting trail.

    Ohio State winning allows them to say they're better than the Florida teams.

    It's the ultimate lose-lose.

  3. Still miffed about the loss, but some great perspective here.

    I struggle to focus on the good in any loss, but there is a lot of football left to be played this year and few expected us to go undefeated, so there's no embarrassment in losing to one of the best teams in the land, IF it turns into a positive and Miami doesn't make these type of mistake down the road.

    Turnovers killed the Canes. Redzone defense was impressive. Harris needs to grow up, talking less and producing more. Fully agree. Well stated, Canes.

  4. My comment has too many characters to fit one posting so I will split it into two parts.

    Part 1

    "Some will still scream "ACC or bust", which remains pointless as Shannon isn't going anywhere at season's end – but based on the conference competition (and the fact that Miami showed it could play with Ohio State), there absolutely is that much more pressure to win the Coastal and get to Charlotte."

    haha a very political answer. You'll admit there is more pressure but refuse to admit that it is indeed acc or bust this year. I expected nothing less. It's your style although I did hold out hope you would put aside your stubbornness on this one.

    I'm going to have to disagree with the notion that 'it remains pointless' to say that not winning an acc title this year is a high disappointment/failure, otherwise a 'bust.'

    Here's why.

    You say this because Randy is going nowhere. Yes, he got the contract and so him going anywhere despite a bust is highly unlikely.

    However, why I disagree with you whisking away 'acc or bust' is because at the very least Randy will be in the hot seat. And I'm not talking about pressure from grumbling short sighted fans who would say he should already be fired.

    I'm talking about real pressure from the higher ups to deliver for this program or kindly leave. Yes, it is well known Randy is rather cozy with the higher ups and for good reason.

    Randy's made us relevant again. There has been progress and most importantly (for those like shalala) he's successfully cleaned up the program with our athletes excelling in the classrooms more than any other relevant football programs. Randy's done a great thing here, that can't be said enough.

    But that won't fly forever allcanes. Not even for the aforementioned higher ups. In the end like in all sports, it's going to come down to winning. That's just the nature of the business.

    And besides it's not all about Randy here. Sure he just got a new contract, so he is virtually untouchable (for now anyway) but what about the rest of the staff? Their futures may hang on a successful year.

    If you say 'acc or bust' is pointless, then wouldn't the 'pressure' be pointless as well? Like I said, a very political answer. You're too stubborn to give any ground on semantics, but on the core issue of delivering this year at least you're there with me. Somewhat anyway.

    (to be continued on part 2)

  5. PART 2

    You were right about the game. Despite the mistakes, there were some key positives to take away from this game. And I too agree that this team has top 10 talent level. But if we're saying we're not as bad as the 'revisionists' and moronic osu embellishers say, or even a portion of our very own fans who have jumped ship and say we suck , then are we not implying that, with the ACC in complete disarray, that we should win it? Of course we are.

    Taking away meaningful positives from such a big game when everyone else in the acc is garbage means we have to deliver, we're in a position to deliver or someone will have to bear the brunt of responsibility. Namely, the head honcho, Randy Shannon. Because in the end, it does come back to the man in charge.

    At this moment, allcanes, whether you admit it or not, an acc championship is obligatory.

    That's just the bottom line.

    It wouldn't be asking for too much at all. We could go 10-3 or 9-4 and still win the acc. That's hardly a herculean task considering our level of talent and the crap that our conference is. Our presence in a bcs bowl game would be invaluable for money reasons, (god knows money matters to a program sustained through private means and not with any help from the state) for recruiting, and just for the overall direction of the program.

    I can hear you saying well what if we go at-large??? What if there are too many key injuries??? yada yada yada obviously all of these factors will go into account in final evaluations.

    Considering the fact this conference is so weak we could conceivably go into the acc championship losing 1 or 2 conference game. Therefore, since we already have one loss it is logical to assume that if we do go to the bcs we in all likelihood won't be going into it as an at large, without an acc title.

    ACC or Randy, though he won't get fired will begin to feel the heat, and a coach in the hot seat or at least a warm seat is always significant.

    ACC or there will be some renovating in the rest of the coaching staff.

    ACC or we lose ground with recruits.

    ACC or no bcs.

    ACC or we begin to lose relevance and respect in the college football world because everybody knows the conference is terrible and we still couldn't say we've won it.

    ACC or this program takes a huge step back in year 4 of the Randy Shannon era.

    ACC or Bust.

    Overall a great article as always allcanes. I appreciate your work.. I'm going to go show it to a friend of mine who is down in the dumps after that loss haha

  6. Even after the loss, there should be no doubt that the U is on it's way back.

    Sometimes things don't go so well, that's just the way it is.

    When the Ravens won the Super Bowl way back when, I remember players saying that they knew the game was their's. Everything just goes your way. The way the ball bounces. Everything.

    That's what Ohio State got on Saturday.

    Canes fans, you need to see this. Miami has the better team and the Buckeyes were lucky that they got this win.

    In spite of the loss, there were a lot of positives.

    The U is a force and did come to play.

    If you have to lose, I'll take this over the beatdown that the rest of the ACC got.

  7. how in the world is UF going to the championship game anyway?

    also, can J12 be the Bernie, Vinny, Kelly, Dorsey level?

    what do you guys think?

  8. Starting to get off the J. Harris fan wagon. I think the 4 INT performance we saw from him on Sat(not all his fault though) is pretty much the way he is. Talented Qb with a good arm who is interception prone and bound to make some bonehead moves that can/will cost the team(why is he still locking onto 1 WR..shouldnt Whipple have coached him on that). J12 is like that super hot/fun chick with emotional issues. One minute you love them and the next they are driving you crazy. If we correct the mistakes from this game I feel we can go 11-1, but better play starts with the QB. Maybe next time he should spend less time tweeting before the game and dressing up like Jim Tresell and actually getting mentally focused.IMO He suffers from overconfidence, especially knowing that no matter how many INTs he throws it's very unlikely Shannon will bench him. Get It together J12, let this be the last time your erratic play is a detriment to our team.

    PS-Somebody please tell Whipple not to be so schizo with the play calling and we dont have to pass 85% of the time. Teams are beginning to key in on that and using it to our disadvantage, taking their chances on the run..not a good look.

  9. I am a Buckeye fan and I'll make sure I keep this civilized. First, you seem to be convinced those turnovers cost Miami the game…they hurt, but so did those kick returns for TDs against OSU. You can't say turnovers are the only reason you lost, and we can't say those kick returns are the only reason it was relatively close. Take away the returns and we do have a blowout, take away the INTs and the Miami offense still had trouble moving the ball against OSU's defense until the third quarter where they played passive and just wanted to avoid the big play. You're defense couldn't stop Pryor on the last drive that lasted 7+ minutes even though the entire country knew what the plays were going to be. So lastly, you guys seem to forget that the score easily could've been worse because Ohio State had the ball on the 5 yard line with a little under 2 minutes left and instead of scoring they just ran out the clock. So Miami had the chance to come back, but they couldn't get it done in the end.

    And yeah now I'm sure you will hear our fans running their mouths, but only because you can't deny you guys have been running yours since the offseason started about how you will show that our championship was won on a fluke and how we would finally lose like we should have to begin with. I'm not going to comment on that because the last eight years have shown the argument will never end, you showed that as well by using the word "tainted" when referring to it.

  10. "Even in defeat, this should be a time for optimism at The U"

    I enjoy your blog, Allcanes and you guys do a thorough job, but I have to disagree. I mean,what have we seen from Miami that garners optimism?

    Jacory Harris is still throwing interceptions. There’s still too many missed tackles. Randy Shannon is still getting out-gameplanned.

    Do we realize that Ohio State has won a total of one National Title in the last 40 years (the same amount as BYU over that span, by the way) yet they are laughing at us? Granted, Buckeye fans are perhaps the most delusional in all of college sports (other than Notre Dame fans, of course), but still…

    Wasn’t this supposed to be the season that Shannon finally had ‘his guys’ in place? Strange how the Canes lose by 12 in their biggest regular season game in 4 years yet there’s no mention of Randy Shannon in the article…although Mark Whipple was questioned. Of course he was. It’s never Randy’s fault. At least the blame wasn’t placed on Larry Coker. (Maybe that comes after the 2nd loss of the season…)

    This is certainly not a time for optimism for the Canes will lose 4+ games this year. Again. They have become Boston College. Only BC has actually played in an ACC Championship Game.

  11. haha a very political answer. You'll admit there is more pressure but refuse to admit that it is indeed acc or bust this year. I expected nothing less. It's your style although I did hold out hope you would put aside your stubbornness on this one.

    Lopez, nothing political about the answer. I said from day one this was a four- to five-year rebuild. This year year four, so big things are expected.

    I still contend that a fan base who pounds their chest and screams "ACC or bust" is off base.

    I said it before the season and after seeing Miami hang tough at Ohio State (while the rest of the ACC seeming withered), that IF HEALTHY, there is no excuse for the Canes to not content for a conference championship this year.

    A national championship was a pipe dream for a team barely inside the top 15 that hasn't proven it can get over the hope. Calling Miami a 'dark horse' because of their talent level was acceptable, but there were many more favorites to contend for a title this year.

    The unspoken goal this year was to compete for an ACC title, to reach the BCS and to be a national title contender (and top five team) entering next year.

    Fans can cry "ACC or bust" all they want, but it's still idiotic as Shannon just signed a new deal last year and the guy isn't going to get fired for not winning the conference. Period.

    Time and time again I've pointed out that several good ACC programs haven't won a conference title in years — hell, decades. Why do Miami fans feel so entitled – to a point where the fell their fourth year, first time head coach should be canned if he doesn't get it done this year?

    Miami looks like the strongest team in the ACC and should content for a conference title. That said, the best team doesn't always win the conference (Florida State in 2005, Wake Forest in 2006).

    You need to go back and re-read past posts here. It's not stubbornness to tell fans that "ACC or bust" is a pointless mantra. I set the expectation at an ACC title (if healthy) this year. I just never said the coaching staff should be fired if that goal isn't reached.

  12. Is Ohio State is a good squad? Absolutely. A great one? Too early to tell. Regardless, they embodied the word 'team' as they pulled together, got it done, capitalized on turnovers and most importantly, played mistake-free, fundamental football.

    ….. Couldn't have said it any better myself

  13. To be quite honest, I think the arguments you are hearing from Ohio State fans is simply in reaction to Miami fans bemoaning all of their mistakes as what cost them the game without considering that Ohio State made plenty of mistakes of their own.

    For sure, you can't just take away those two special teams returns. They happened. Miller and Benjamin made plays there and they scored.

    In the same sense, you can't just assume Miami wins if the turnovers didn't occur. They did occur. Harris threw those balls up for grabs and Ohio State players made the plays. Miami defenders had a couple of plays to be made on Pryor's passes that they didn't make, as you pointed out. It is what it is, catch the damn ball.

    Mistakes happened on both ends, and both fan bases had pockets of fans that were delusional. As one commenter stated above, there were just as many Miami fans citing "florida speed" and revenge factors as silly, overvalued angles that sounded quite a lot like ignorant Oregon fans before the Rose Bowl.

    All things considered, Miami has a good team, but with all the mistakes and plays made in mind, the 12 point margin seems about right to me. Miami could've made it closer, and Ohio State could've put on more.

  14. I simply see this game versus Ohio State as "Game 2" It wasn't our Super Bowl or anything.

    Game 3 is versus Pitt and it IS "MY Super Bowl"! Nothing would please me more than to Beat the hell out of Pitt and there OVERATED HB Dion Lewis (who I think only has 105 yds rushing in 2 games) Some heisman candidate he was!


  15. Jacory is all hype; one great game and we all were lied too, bench him, he is a turnover freak, Miami will never win with him, quote me on that or bash me,jacory might be a decent QB,but he's focus is more on his popularity than the game and the U , i remember Ken Dorsey was always watching film he was always a step ahead this guy is step behind, put AJ or even Whipple's son he now's the system, and maybe the U will have a chance this year.

  16. In the same sense, you can't just assume Miami wins if the turnovers didn't occur. They did occur. Harris threw those balls up for grabs and Ohio State players made the plays. Miami defenders had a couple of plays to be made on Pryor's passes that they didn't make, as you pointed out. It is what it is, catch the damn ball.

    … no one was saying that Miami would've won had the turnovers not occurred, WG.

    Simply point out that again Ohio State fans are banging that "we whooped your ass" drum but (1) when you look at the stats they were damn near even and (2) the Canes absolutely manned up in the red zone and forced a lot of field goal attempts — something few Buckeyes probably expected after hyping Pryor all off-season.

    Miami's defenders should've picked a few off, but neither dropped pass hit 'em in the mitts like the one that Heyward caught or the first one Chekwa hauled in. Harris lobbed up a few gimmies … yet again.

    Again, the game is in the book and it's time to move forward. Ohio State got the win, Miami folded and there's still a ton of ball left to be played.

  17. I read above an OSU fan saying if Miami doesn't have turnovers they still don't win because the couldn't move the ball obviously didn't see the stats were identical.

    If you take away 1 interception, Heyward, the game is completely different. If the Canes get the very least a FG the game is 26-20, or they score a touchdown make it 26-24. Instead the ball is taken to the other end of the field a made 33-17. GAME CHANGER.

    If that 1 interception doesn't happen the team is pumped with momentum. The defense had been doing a good job and offense just proved to move the ball right down the field. The game is completely different, and it is all about momentum.

    OSU had a better day. I have heard enough from the OSU fans and how we are lucky that we didn't get blown out. If they are such a better program then why are they still dwelling on this game? Why are they on Miami's message boards?

    It's already over, time to move on. Cane fans still can look forward to a fun season and get to a BCS bowl that hasn't happened in years.

    Stay positive as the negatives don't get us anywhere.

  18. I got to watch the game up close on Saturday in person, and I just can't over the 4 TO's. We can't beat anyone with that number of major, game-changing miscues. Harris is our leader, and he has to start leading with his play. We had the ball inside the 10 and we chose to pass the ball instead of running it into the endzone with power. We threw and got picked off by Heyward for game-set-match. The call was one thing but the pass was too far ahead of Berry as well. We missed that pass twice. I don't have much else to say other than we won't win if we keep giving the ball away, and also start taking the ball away as well. I'm sick.
    -Columbus Cane

  19. J12 — that's all we have heard all offseason. Jacory Harris this, Jacory Harris that…Well Miami fans, you wanted J12, you got J12. This program has peaked and will not take another step forward until it gets a quarterback. This game this past weekend proved that Miami has talent everywhere on the field, except for the most critical position — QB. I am talking Steve Walsh, Craig Erickson, Gino Torretta, Ken Dorsey, etc…these guys were leaders of great Miami teams and they rarely, if ever, made the critical mistake to get Miami beat. Simply put, J12 is not the answer. Simply put, he is the starter because of a lack of competition and a lack of depth. Until Miami recruits top level QB's, this program will linger in the middle of the pack.

  20. The best thing in this case is to take the advice of what Coach Shannon says – you have to move on from the loss and go play the next game. Of course, you learn what you can from it, but you have to move on and go play the next game.

    I sort of feel foolish holding onto the old 2002 Ohio State game for so long like I did. Once this game kicked off, the 2002 game felt like history and little more than that. I still consider Ohio State a rival because of that 2002 game, but I am moving on from that National Championship loss, and moving on from the loss on Saturday.

  21. OSU had a better day. I have heard enough from the OSU fans and how we are lucky that we didn't get blown out. If they are such a better program then why are they still dwelling on this game? Why are they on Miami's message boards?

    I'm curious to see the other team's perspective. I think some of us are a little insecure, for lack of a better word. We have had a great time under Tressel but only one MNC and that one is disputed by those outside of Buckeye Nation. We had two bad losses to LSU and Flordia in MNC games and lost bad to USC at their house and watched a win against them at our house slip through our fingers or, more accurately, our defense.

    We're not sure we really belong in the elite. Are we winning so many games because we are the top of a less than stellar Big Ten or are we truly one of the top programs in the country. We don't feel we can afford to show weakness or our spot at number two might slip to those who always say we are overrated. Therefore we can't just win a big game and be happy. We have to be convincing and if someone says we were given the game and didn't earn it (think about our previous meeting) we get a bit defensive.

    I've said elsewhere the what if game is not getting anyone anywhere. Let's say you guys don't throw that last pick and score a TD. I can say that would motivate Pryor and the offense to go out there and do what they did when you went up 10-3 or when Marshall pulled within 7 off a blocked FG. That is what great QBs do. Of course, we could also turtle up and try to hold on to that two point lead. The interception happened so we will never know. But see, even I can't let it go with out making a counter agrument.

    You guys may have similar issues when you start winning ACC championships but not MNCs. You may wonder if you are you really great again or are you just the best of the ACC and how good are they really?

    I wish you luck the rest of the year. But I do that for every team we play and for admitedly selfish reasons. Every win you have makes our win look better.

  22. Do people forget that we were playing THE #2 TEAM IN THE COUNTRY…. AT THEIR PLACE????

    No one expected us to win this game. Every Pre-Season magazine had Ohio State playing in the BCS Title Game. Everyone needs to get over it. We lost to a BETTER team.

    We still have 10 games left.

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