Ohio State vs. USC


Monday, October 23, 2017

Ohio State Offense vs. USC Defense
The early word out of Columbus was that star Ohio State RB Chris "Beanie" Wells would be at or near 100 percent for Saturday night's showdown with USC, but word came down on Thursday that Wells is now doubtful for the game and it seems unlikely he'll be able to shoulder a heavy load even if he does play. This is a substantial blow to the Buckeyes because their best chance to win this game is to get Wells 20-plus carries. Why? First, Wells is the team's most explosive offensive weapon and getting him the ball as often as possible is a priority. Second, Wells' punishing running style could potentially wear down USC's exceptionally fast defensive front given enough carries. Third, the more the Trojans are forced to concentrate on stopping Wells the less they can focus on attacking Ohio State's vulnerable offensive line in pass protection.

NFL Bonanza in L.A.
College football fans won't be the only ones with their eyes trained on Los Angeles on Saturday. NFL scouts will be paying close attention because the Buckeyes and Trojans feature no fewer than 36 potential pros, writes Todd McShay.

McShay: A scout's dream Insider
Remember, the Buckeyes were not the same offensive group without Wells in last week's near-loss to Ohio. Backups Daniel Herron, Maurice Wells and Brandon Saine weren't nearly as effective as Ohio State hoped, which allowed the Bobcats to attack Ohio State's offensive line more aggressively. The Buckeyes offensive front did a poor job of picking up the blitz and QB Todd Boeckman's accuracy suffered when he couldn't set his feet and/or step into his throws. Offensive coordinator Jim Bollman now has a difficult challenge in terms of play-calling. He clearly can't abandon the run but it won't be a surprise if Bollman calls more passing plays on first down in effort to keep USC's talented defensive front seven off-balance.
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