Indiana hits the road on Saturday for their biggest challenge yet in the 2018 season — the No. 3 ranked Ohio State Buckeyes. The game kicks off at 4:00 p.m. EST on Fox.
As is typically the case, IU comes into this game as a major underdog. The two programs stand on opposite ends of the college football hierarchy. While the Buckeyes have had double-digit wins in 14 of their last 16 seasons, Indiana has never had a 10-win season in their history that dates back to 1899. The Hoosiers have had 9-win seasons twice, in 1945 and 1967.
Today we take a look at what the Buckeye media is saying about this 2018 version of David vs. Goliath.
SO YOU’RE TELLING ME THERE’S A CHANCE
If you want to convince yourself that IU can pull off the stunner on Saturday, you don’t have to look back very far for a good comparable. Coming off a dramatic come from behind win over Penn State in 2017, Ohio State turned around a played Iowa the following week. The Buckeyes went into that game a three touchdown favorite. They lost 55-24.
Head coach Urban Meyer was asked about the potential for a letdown after another big come-from-behind win over Penn State in 2018. The Columbus Dispatch described it this way:
When Urban Meyer was asked to look back at the Iowa debacle during the Ohio State coach’s weekly press conference on Monday, he cut off the question and said he was only looking forward.
He later shook his head when another questioner started to broach what happened last year in Iowa City, when the Hawkeyes ambushed Ohio State. That 55-24 thrashing proved to be a fatal blow to the Buckeyes’ College Football Playoff chances.
YES, THAT IS A FUN FACT
While most of the article is more miserable than “fun facts” for Hoosier fans, the Dayton Daily News did manage to dig up this nugget that Hoosier fans can cling to. And why not? Purdue fans have made a living out of clinging to turn of the 20th century domination.
“2. Indiana dominated the beginning of the series.
The series started in 1901 with an 18-6 Indiana victory in Columbus. After a 6-6 tie a year later, Indiana won the next four games against Ohio State.
The Buckeyes did not get their first win against the Hoosiers until a 13-3 triumph in 1914.”
Fire up the t-shirt printing press: “Undefeated vs. Ohio State From 1901 to 1913.”
A DIFFERENT LOOK FOR THE BUCKEYES
Just about every Urban Meyer team going back to Utah and Florida has had dual-threat quarterbacks. With Dwayne Haskins leading the way in 2018, Meyer lacks a weapon he has grown accustomed to.
In an Ohio State, first world problem kind of way, Haskins’ inability to run the ball might be adversely impacting the Buckeye running game. Eleven Warriors described it this way:
“Through five games this year, they rank No. 33 nationally with 210.3 yards per game. But that number is a significant drop off from years past, as Ohio State has ranked 11th or better in every previous season under Meyer.”
Now before you shed a tear for OSU, make note of this — Ohio State’s Kevin Wilson led passing attack currently ranks eighth nationally. It’s a new look for the Buckeyes, who haven’t had a top-30 passing offense this century.
URBAN SPEAKS, TAKE TWO
We brought you what Urban Meyer had to say about the game earlier in the week. He spoke again on Wednesday, and had more thoughts on the Hoosiers, including accolades for Hoosier receiver Whop Philyor.
In another illustration of first world Ohio State problems, Meyer also bemoans OSU’s lack of depth. Say what now?
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