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Defense, weather dampen Ohio State offense’s performance during Saturday scrimmage

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When it rains, it pours, and Saturday’s dreary scrimmage proved true figuratively and literally for the Ohio State offense, which failed to score a single touchdown. The defense won the scrimmage, 74-62, (unofficially), before heavy rain and lightning caused an abrupt finish.

With no completions and only two first downs in the first seven possessions, the offense could never get going against an inspired Buckeyes defense. The offense gave the ball away four times and mustered only 171 yards on 17 possessions.

Leading the way for the defense was sophomore defensive tackle Jonathan Hankins, who had a tackle for loss, a sack and numerous stops on third-and-short, which the offense failed to convert four times.

The scrimmage began with kick returns. Sophomore running back Jaamal Berry electrified the crowd with a 95-yard return for a touchdown up the right sideline. Jordan Hall also took a kick back to the 40 and Chris Fields had a return to the 47-yard line.

When the offense took the field, it began backed up against its own goal line. It went three-and-out under senior quarterback Joe Bauserman, thanks in part to great pass defense from junior cornerback Travis Howard, who turned in yet another stellar performance.

The next offensive set, Jaamal Berry rumbled for nine yards and had a huge collision with sophomore safety Jamie Wood. Wood left the game shortly after and did not return, saying his shoulder “popped out.”

Redshirt freshman Taylor Graham continued to put the ball on the money, but numerous drops (five, unofficially, on Graham throws) bogged his stats down to 3-for-10 for 27 yards. Braxton Miller, the highly touted freshman quarterback, was 2-for-4 for 22 yards.

The other quarterbacks fared no better, with sophomore Kenny Guiton going 3-for-7 for 31 yards with one interception, and Joe Bauserman hitting 1-for-4 for 11 yards, with one interception. Both interceptions were recorded by redshirt freshman cornerback Bradley Roby, both going through the hands of Corey “Philly” Brown and Jaamal Berry to reach Roby.

The offense did not find any more luck on the ground. The leading rusher was redshirt freshman Roderick Smith, with six carries for 30 of the offense’s 80 total yards rushing.

The entire defense looked stout, but freshman safety Jeremy Cash might have had the most impressive day. The Florida product had a number of tackles, including a big hit that jarred the ball loose from Verlon Reed, and was recovered by Dorian Bell. Cash also looked impressive in pass coverage, breaking up several passes.

There were many hits that drew hoots and hollers from the crowd that braved the weather. Senior Florida State transfer Dionte Allen unloaded on Berry from his cornerback position, and sophomore defensive end Melvin Fellows drilled Guiton on a pass rush.

Players out with injuries were Terrelle Pryor (he threw some in sweats), Donnie Evege (out for season), Zach Domicone (was seen icing his calf), Tyler Moeller (in full pads), Corey “Pittsburgh” Brown (in sweats) and CJ Barnett (in full pads).

 

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