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Opinion: Houston, Ohio State present similar styles to Sooners

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Buckeye football players waiting to run out of the tunnel and onto the field before the first game of the 2016 season against Bowling Green on Sept. 3 at Ohio Stadium. The Buckeyes won 77-10. Credit: Mason Swires | Assistant Photo Editor

Buckeye football players waiting to run out of the tunnel and onto the field before the first game of the 2016 season against Bowling Green on Sept. 3 at Ohio Stadium. The Buckeyes won 77-10. Credit: Mason Swires | Assistant Photo Editor

When Ohio State and Oklahoma storm the field at Gaylord Family Memorial Stadium, it will mark the first time the two programs played in 33 years. However, the Sooners had a similar look at the Buckeyes in Week 1.

Oklahoma took on former OSU offensive coordinator Tom Herman and his Houston Cougars to open the season. Herman runs nearly the same offensive scheme as he did with OSU, so the Sooners should be very familiar with the offensive attack of the Buckeyes.

Houston’s 33-23 victory and offensive success might appear to foreshadow success for OSU’s offense, but it also means that the Oklahoma defense will be better prepared for what the Buckeyes may throw at them. The style of Cougars’ quarterback Greg Ward Jr. and OSU redshirt junior quarterback J.T. Barrett draw similarities in the areas that had Oklahoma’s defense discombobulated.

While it might seem like Oklahoma has the best insight prior to the game due to its game against Houston, it would be foolish to forget about the masterful preparation skills of coach Urban Meyer. On Sunday, Meyer called his former colleague Herman.

“Yeah. We did talk to Tom. Just got their thoughts on personnel,” Meyer said at Monday’s press conference. “It was more about personnel because they have a couple of new players as well in the back end of their defense, and what’s their thoughts on the defensive line.”

The Buckeyes and the Sooners do not have an extensive history, but these are two of the most storied programs in college football history. In early August, the Associated Press released its top 25 college football teams of all time, with OSU and Oklahoma ranked No. 1 and No. 2 respectively on that list.

The offense of Houston has had more success statistically than OSU, racking up 1,427 yards as compared to OSU’s 1,193. So far, the Cougars have leaned on their run game to put points on the board, while OSU has enjoyed a balanced scoring attack from the air and on the ground.

While both teams have dynamic coach-quarterback duos, each team is playing for a different reason. Oklahoma needs to win to regain momentum for the postseason, while the Buckeyes are looking to remain seated in the top four.

As the game draws near, there is potential for the matchup to be an instant classic

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