"Ezekiel Elliott" tag

Buckeyes’ spread offense ready to open playbook

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Like a kid opening a present on Christmas morning, Urban Meyer can’t wait to tear off the wrapping and bows to see what his latest Ohio State offense will do. Ohio State went 12-0 in Meyer’s first season as coach last year. But it wasn’t because the offense was a NASCAR racer. It was more like the Buckeyes stayed ahead of the field by patching and tuning an old but reliable form of transportation. Quarterback Braxton Miller’s legs carried the Buckeyes for the first half of the season. After that, the offensive responsibilities were spread out, with tailback Carlos Hyde and the wide receivers assuming their share of the load. Meyer, a major proponent of the hurry-up, no-huddle spread attack, barely recognized his offense. There was no H-back, a central figure as he designed the lethal Florida offenses built around the hybrid runner-receiver Percy Harvin. And most of the time, it just looked like something Woody Hayes might have installed. Meyer concedes that the 2012 Buckeyes bore only a slight resemblance to the cutting-edge attack he had at Florida because H-back Jordan Hall was injured most of the year. ”That whole part of the offense didn’t exist, which is tough,” he said during fall camp. ”If you evaluate last year’s offense, we were a pro offense. There was not a lot of read components (and) that’s the essence of what spread football is.” This year, Hall is finally healthy and figures to be a fly in the ointment of defenses, flitting out wide at times, into the slot at others, and running out of the backfield at yet other times. ”You’ll see a different style of offense this year,” Meyer vowed. The thing is, the Buckeyes averaged 37 points a game last season, and that was with Miller having only middling success on medium-to-deep throws, Hall watching from the sidelines and the receivers having a good but not great year. Now Miller is directing the offense instead of just taking snaps and taking off. And Ohio State’s offense is much closer to what Meyer had hoped it would and could be. Tom Herman, co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, also sounds like a guy who just handed the keys to a Bugatti. ”I don’t know if I would ever say (we’re) fully loaded,” he said of the offense. ”But we are closer than we’ve ever been. That’s exciting.” He makes an interesting point that the coaching staff can’t let their imaginations run wild. Even if the playbook is wide open now, that doesn’t mean putting five receivers out wide or running the Statue of Liberty play is a good idea – just because you can do it. ”You have to be careful to temper your enthusiasm and creativity, because at the end of the day, you can overthink and overcoach yourself,” he said. ”(We have an) identity. This is who we are and this is what we are going to do and we are going to do it better than anybody in the country.” So the playcalling will undoubtedly include a few more razzle-dazzle plays. But when it comes to the nitty-gritty on third-and-short, don’t look for a double-reverse when the best play might just be a fullback run off tackle. That doesn’t mean the veteran players don’t want to take the new-look offense out for a spin. ”There’s a lot of speed that just got infused into the program with these guys coming in to go with all the great skill players that we had here,” offensive lineman Jack Mewhort said. ”There’s a quicker edge to us than a year ago.” Backs Ezekiel Elliott and Dontre Wilson are lightning-quick freshmen who add an upgrade to the team’s speed. Young wide-outs have done the same to the receiving corps. Leading pass-catcher Corey Brown was asked how many points fans might expect when No. 2 Ohio State opens against Buffalo on Saturday. ”If we eliminate the mistakes, a lot,” he said, grinning. Asked what he means by a lot, he added, ”I don’t know. We’ll have to see.” And then he laughed. — Follow Rusty Miller on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/RustyMillerAP

Ezekiel Elliott still recruiting for Ohio State

Ohio State isn’t done with the Gateway to the West. Fresh off the signing of ESPN 150 running back Ezekiel Elliott in the Class of 2013, another prospect out of St. Louis — big offensive tackle Brian Wallace of Christian Brothers College High School — is generating some buzz with the Buckeyes. With an offer last month, Wallace started paying a little more attention to Ohio State. Of course having Elliott helping the Buckeyes hasn’t hurt either, as the 6-foot-5, 283-pound Wallace has heard from the future Ohio State running back about possibly joining him in Columbus, Ohio.

Ohio State outlook: Top 5 RBs in 2014

As the 2014 recruiting class comes more and more into focus following what was yet another strong national signing day for Urban Meyer, BuckeyeNation will take a position-by-position look at the juniors. Today, we examine the running back position. Though it’s a position of strength for Ohio State with junior Parris Campbell Jr. (Akron, Ohio/St. Vincent-St. Mary) committing on Feb. 10, the Buckeyes aren’t satisfied yet. In the Class of 2013, Ohio State took just one running back – Ezekiel Elliott (St.

Ohio State Football: Which Freshmen Will Play on Offense This Season?

The biggest question that is always asked shortly after any national signing day is which new recruits will line up and play in their freshman seasons. College football is not what it was decades ago, and freshmen contributing immediately is not just expected, it’s almost critical to success in many programs. In the case of the Ohio State Buckeyes and head coach Urban Meyer , their main goal in recruiting was to find the speedsters to suit their spread offense which, even lacking ideal personnel, was one of the highest-scoring offenses in the country (ranked No. 21) in points per game. They wanted speed, and they got speed…and then some. Namely, they found four speedsters who have a chance to crack the lineup on offense in Jalin Marshall, James Clark, Dontre Wilson and Ezekiel Elliott. Marshall and Wilson are more prototypical slotbacks , who can be used both as receivers or running backs. While Wilson is more of a speedster, Marshall has the ability to make people miss both with his speed and agility. In …

Ohio State Football: Which Freshmen Will Play on Offense This Season?

The biggest question that is always asked shortly after any national signing day is which new recruits will line up and play in their freshman seasons.
College football is not what it was decades ago, and freshmen contributing immediately is …

Ohio State trying to pile up 2014 RBs

In the recruiting class of 2013, Ohio State went after just one player and landed a player the coaching staff hopes is the face of the future at running back in Ezekiel Elliott (St. Louis/John Burroughs). With Parris Campbell Jr. (Akron, Ohio/St. Vincent-St. Mary) and his 1,286 yards rushing and 28 touchdowns already committed for 2014, the Buckeyes aren’t done. Jordan Hall and Carlos Hyde will exit the team next season, leaving Ohio State with at least two holes to fill.

Ohio State Recruiting: Updates on Ezekiel Elliott, Dontre Wilson and More

It’s no surprise that Urban Meyer is all over the signing day news ticker, but he may do more harm than good for this 2013 Ohio State recruiting class.
Meyer is making moves to shore up his newest class, going …

How Urban Meyer, Ohio State Can Prevent Ezekiel Elliott from Flipping to SEC

It looks like the official decision process for 4-star running back and current Ohio State commitment Ezekiel Elliott is going to come down to the wire.
Elliott has been committed to Ohio State since April, and he’s a big-time recruit …

Ohio State Football Recruiting: Can the Buckeyes Keep Ezekiel Elliott?

Just when it seemed like national signing day was going to be a chance for the Buckeyes to add one or two more pieces, next Wednesday may have OSU fans worried, as commit Ezekiel Elliott may be wavering.
Elliott, who …

Ohio State Football: 4-Star RB, OSU Commit Ezekiel Elliott to Visit Missouri

One of the jewels of Ohio State’s 2013 recruiting class—4-star running back Ezekiel Elliott (via ESPN) out of St. Louis—has scheduled a visit to home-state Missouri this weekend, according to 247sports.com.
Ohio State fans hit the panic button as soon as …

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