Ezekiel Elliott carries Ohio State to the promised land

Urban Meyer and Ezekiel Elliott admire their handiwork. (David J. Phillip/AP photo)

Urban Meyer and Ezekiel Elliott admire their handiwork. (David J. Phillip/AP photo)

Urban Meyer and Ezekiel Elliott admire their handiwork. (David J. Phillip/AP photo)

Urban Meyer and Ezekiel Elliott admire their handiwork. (David J. Phillip/AP photo)

Arlington, Texas — These short takes are presented as a companion to the Ohio State-Oregon game column, which can be found here. Ohio State won 42-20.

1. Ezekiel Elliott is indeed a big wheel. When in doubt, the Buckeyes simply handed the ball to the man known to Ohio State fans as “Zeke.” His 85-yard burst broke open the Sugar Bowl win over Alabama, and against Oregon he rushed for 246 yards and four touchdowns. His first score — a 33-yard scoot up the middle — tied the game at 7, and his rushes after the Ducks had closed within 21-20 in the third quarter reclaimed the game for Ohio State. He carried six times for 44 yards on the drive that made it 28-20, and he rushed four times for 20 yards on the next possession, which made it 35-30.

2. The Buckeyes don’t exactly shut opponents down, but their defense gets off the field. Oregon, which entered with the nation’s No. 3 offense, converted twice on 12 third downs. In the Sugar Bowl, Alabama had converted three times on 13 third downs. The Ducks still managed 465 yards Monday, but they were hard yards. Marcus Mariota had averaged 10.1 yards per pass attempt — that’s essentially a first time every time he threw, regardless of whether it was completed — during the season’s first 14 games. Against the Buckeyes, Mariota averaged 9 yards per attempt. (A subtle difference, yes, but a big one.) And the game’s biggest moment came when the Buckeyes held Oregon to a field goal, allowing Ohio State to keep the lead, after Cardale Jones fumbled in the third quarter.

3. Mark Helfrich coached an odd game. He had Oregon go for a touchdown on fourth-and-goal from the 3 in the second quarter with the Ducks trailing 14-7. (Thomas Tyner was halted by Vonn Bell, the safety from Ridgeland High in Rossville, Ga.) Inside the game’s final eight minutes, Helfrich ordered a punt on fourth-and-7 from the Ducks’ 26 and his team trailing 35-20. Why, if you have the nation’s No. 3 offense, do you put the game in the hands of the nation’s No. 84 defense — a defense that had already yielded 507 yards?

Reader Comments 0

222 comments
Cinesias
Cinesias

No, this can't be true, because UGA and/or Alabama are going to win the National Championship!

GAObserver
GAObserver

Boy we are going to have so much fun on here when The Ohio State University has to vacate the NC and all of their regular season wins. When NCAA finds out the LeBron gave Cardale free tattoos.

OH_IO
OH_IO

@GAObserver


Jerk


Wad


go watch the Belk replay you ignorant fool.


Good to be #9, eh?



GAObserver
GAObserver

@OH_IO @GAObserver Looks like I struck a nerve. Dish it out but can't take it? You need to go back an retake Troll 101!

TOJacket
TOJacket

@GAObserver @OH_IO GAObserver, he has taken more crap than all you mutts and everybody else combined............what a classless comment from a butt-hurt mutt...WAAAHHH!.......and hey GAObserver.....30-24...."We own this state"

TideDawg
TideDawg

Congratulations to the Buckeyes!


Those folks really know how to celebrate.  Go out an destroy someone's property...that's the way to do it. Turn cars over, break windows, burn, pillage. What a great way to celebrate winning a NC.


Somebody explain! How does destroying someone's property fit in a celebration??


Well, ESPN finally got what they wanted...a West Coast team in the NCG. Another Notre Dame embarrassment type loss from the Worst Coast. They had me fooled, I thought they could play with OSU.

OH_IO
OH_IO

@TideDawg


Alabama certainly couldn't, could they, bitter tide dog.


Tide and dog. 


Haha

OH_IO
OH_IO

@TideDawg


Imagine what the dogs would do it they won it all considering the urination and deification on their own campus after regular season games. 


Then again, they can only imagine. 

5150POAD
5150POAD

@TideDawg Didn't some UGa fans or students EGG Aaron BOXSCORE Murray's home after the SEC CG? Man those fans know how to party too.

Dewnsav
Dewnsav

All hail the Big 10...and congrats to all the real buckeye fans out there...go dogs

TOJacket
TOJacket

@Dewnsav Real Buckeye fans?...........what a tacky, half-a$$ congrats..........just what i figured out of you..........go jackets

Dewnsav
Dewnsav

@TOJacket @Dewnsav jumping in my business ?? just what I figured out of you...you've taken sole possession of the number 1 a$$ hat on here...go butt a stump...moron...go dogs

MoistDawg
MoistDawg

@Dewnsav @TOJacket i propose a tag team steel cage match or a lumberjack match you each get to pick your partner

DawgNole
DawgNole

@TOJacket @Dewnsav

I've got something to say: Why'd you change your handle?

It seems to have brought out your seamier side.

HendoDawg
HendoDawg

@DawgNole @TOJacket @Dewnsav No kidding DawgNole...TO is caryd's Hyde to Jekyll? The new handle and GT's win over the Dawgs have brought out someone's surly side.

OH_IO
OH_IO

@Dewnsav


The B1G did not beat Alabama and Oregon. Ohio State did.


Congrats  to you for your #9 finish.


No more coattails. 

TOJacket
TOJacket

@DawgNole @HendoDawg @TOJacket @Dewnsav You are kidding right?.......it's amazing how many shots i have taken over the last 4 years on these blogs..........but when i want to crow, i am considered "surly"?...Oh well...30-24.

Delbert_D
Delbert_D

I'd expect to see some evidence of you "taking it to the bank" with the guys in Vegas. Otherwise, it's only meaningless boasting.

MoistDawg
MoistDawg

what some of you cmr haters fail to realize is that we dont want richt to be the next nick satan or urban lyer we will get our national championships you can take that to the bank but we will do it the right way the georgia way and instead of comparing him to nick satan cmr will be compared to coach k

TOJacket
TOJacket

@MoistDawg Moist, you never.....never, have to worry about CMR being like Nick Saban.

MoistDawg
MoistDawg

@TOJacket @MoistDawg good cmr will be compared to harley race and nick satan will be compared to hornswaggle or adrian adonis

OH_IO
OH_IO

@MoistDawg


Coach K has won multiple Titles and Gold Medals


NO comparison. 



Guyon
Guyon

If the BCS championship procedure was still in place, Bama would have played FSU in the championship game. This is because the media has been biased toward the SEC. The Ohio St win tells us the SEC would not have won as many NC games if the current playoff system was in place for the past 8 years. The committee that chose the four teams in the playoff ignored the media SEC bias. So the NC results prior to this year should have an asterisk noting the playoff system was not in place.

TOJacket
TOJacket

@Guyon I say we just start keeping up with them now..........seems fair.

candlin14
candlin14

All you UGA, Mark Richt supporters. Mark Richt is third tier compared to the Urban Meyers, Nick Sabans, Mack Browns of the coaching scene. When I look at the four quarterbacks who played in the Playoff game, all four of them were a light year better then Hutson Mason. To even consider we had a chance to compete for a title with Mason is why we were in the Belk Bowl....


Until you idiots realize that Mark Richt has blue chip talent every year and produces little to nothing at all, our Dawgs will NEVER EVER come close to a title. This year was the easiest SEC schedule we could have ever dreamed of having and we went into this year with a quarterback who wouldnt start at Kennesaw!!!

TOJacket
TOJacket

Well, i guess Chip the Homer has banned me.............maybe i can make parole before next season?

DawgNole
DawgNole

@TOJacket

Your new handle appears to have brought out the worst in you. Perhaps that's the problem.

GeorgeJetsen
GeorgeJetsen

Why did Oregon allow Nike to create uniforms without any green or yellow! Not likely to have changed the end result but could have affected Oregons mojo- particularly when they got down.

OH_IO
OH_IO

We're a day behind in Winter Conditioning.

RafeHollister
RafeHollister

Elliot is an awesome back and had a terrific game, and nothing happens without their outstanding offensive line, but Cardale Jones was the player that made the difference.  How they had that guy number 3 just shows how poorly coaches sometimes evaluate talent.  I don't think they make it to the championship came with Braxton Miller or Barrett.


Cardale's combination of arm strength and rushing ability is rare.  Seems he is almost unstoppable on fourth and short, he just goes till he gets there.

TOJacket
TOJacket

@RafeHollister Rafe, are you actually questioning the coaching and evaluating of a coach with 3 NC's?...........that's like the "put Hutson in crew from last year".........i think Meyer knew exactly what he was doing.

5150POAD
5150POAD

@RafeHollister I guess you forgot that the 2 QBs ahead of Jones were Heisman candidates during the year.

Coaches didn't poorly evaluate Jones. B. Miller was a Heisman candidate to open the season before he was injured.   TJ Barrett was a Heisman candidate all season until he was injured. Now how the Hell do you claim the coaches were bad at evaluating talent when they had those 3 QBs?

RafeHollister
RafeHollister

@9014EAEO @RafeHollister Didn't say they were bad qb's, they were excellent, but they didn't have the skills that Jones brings to the table.  Coaches are reluctant to make changes when they are winning, but that doesn't mean that the reserves couldn't be doing as well or maybe even better. Usually if your guy is winning, you don't mess with things, I get that, but sometimes, you trade Alex Smith to KC and start Tattoo boy and you get even better.


Jones' level of skills, size, and persistence doesn't come around that often.  I'm guessing that Jones will play QB in the NFL, the other two, probably not.

HeyThere
HeyThere

Remember y'all, Purdue is a better team now because Ohio State won last night... One day, one fine day we will go back to talking about college football TEAMS instead of conferences. Hopefully I'll still be alive.

TOJacket
TOJacket

@HeyThere There not better.....just as good as say Tenn. or UF or Arky........that's what this play-off shows.........the SEC is just another power 5.........nothing more, nothing less.

Guyon
Guyon

We are still left with the question of how TCU would have fared in the playoffs. The final rating has them No 3, but they should be No 2. TCU should have been playing Ohio St. in the championship game. The playoffs must expand to 8 teams to eliminate these type issues.

7576DAWG
7576DAWG

@Guyon T.C.U. would have lost worse than Oregon did. T.C.U. and Oregon are the same type Offensive team . The difference is Oregon has a better Defense.

GTBob
GTBob

@Guyon I honestly believe that if TCU had gotten the #4 seed instead of Ohio St that they would be National Champions right now. Im not sure who would win in a head to head matchup though.

GTBob
GTBob

@7576DAWG Oregon has a better defense? The Oregon defense ranked 89th in the country this year. TCU was 18th. Their offenses aren't really all that similar either.

5150POAD
5150POAD

@Guyon I'm pretty sure TCU was not deep enough or strong enough to last and defeat any combination of 2 games over Bama, Oregon, FSU and Ohio St.

TCU was a great team but having to win 2 games at the end i don't think they could have pulled off.  

I've never seen a year where 8 teams could have a legitimate claim to be a National Champion.

Fans can't afford to travel to that many playoff games. 

Do you have any idea how much it would cost for the teams to do that much traveling?

You want the teams fans at the games not just people watching at home. You want to compete with the NFL that late in the season? 16 games? the injuries would be killer and bad for the players futures.

6 teams max. 5 power 5 Champs and 1 at large. 

TOJacket
TOJacket

@GTBob @Guyon They need to start playing a Big12 CG........then they have an argument.

GTBob
GTBob

@TOJacket While I would like to see a Big 12 championship game, I don't think it would have made any difference. Ohio St made the playoffs because they are Ohio St. TCU didn't because they are TCU.

GTBob
GTBob

@9014EAEO You probably would have said the same thing about Ohio St before the playoffs started. TCU completely humiliated a team that beat Alabama but they couldn't hang with Alabama? Im just not seeing it. TCU is probably the most complete team in the country. They could beat anyone on any given day by a large margin.

TOJacket
TOJacket

@GTBob @TOJacket I understand the bias and school"Rep" of some teams....and i coached a young man who plays on TCU, great kid who went to school with my son. But if i had been on the committee i would have put Ohio State in the brackets because of they're incredible QB depth.......that is good coaching and recruiting at it's best..........Has a team won a NC with a QB who was 3rd on the depth chart...that to me is the definition of "next man up"

5150POAD
5150POAD

@GTBob yes any given day but not 2 weeks in a row against the best of the best. 

GTBob
GTBob

@TOJacket Replace the name TCU with the name Texas, and replace the name Ohio St with the name Illinois. Keep all other variables the same like schedule, results, rosters, etc. Who do you think gets in? Texas or Illinois?

GTBob
GTBob

@9014EAEO I honestly don't see why not. Everybody would have said the same thing about Ohio St.

TOJacket
TOJacket

@GTBob @TOJacket Well it won't be the "Fighting Illinois".........i understand your point, only way to kill your rep is to go Penn ST. or start looking like crap every year like TN. and Michigan.

GTBob
GTBob

@OH_IO We will agree to disagree on that. I respect your team and what they accomplished this year, but I don't think a highly subjective group of people would have ever put Illinois in over Texas if their resumes were even remotely similar. As long as the process is determined by humans in a room, the schools like Bama, Ohio St, USC, and Notre Dame are always going to get the nod over others. Especially smaller schools without history like TCU. 

DawgNole
DawgNole

@9014EAEO @Guyon

YET AGAIN, EASY SOLUTION: Reduce the regular season from 12 to 11 games by cutting out a damn cupcake! Offsets the extra game required by an expanded playoff--AND improves the quality of OOC schedules by the cowardly FBS teams who continue to buy Ws by paying creampuffs a million bucks to come in and bend over.

OH_IO
OH_IO

@GTBob


You nor I were in the room. Their resume's were not even remotely similar.

OSU destroyed Wisc in a Championship game with a 3rd string QB with a week to prepare


TCU's defense gave up 61 points - yes, 61 points in a loss to Baylor, the team's most like foe. Not championship calibre IMO.