Ohio State grade card: Buckeyes’ flaws on full display


A grade card on Ohio State’s 49-20 loss at Purdue in which the weaknesses that have been evident all season caught up with the Buckeyes in a big way:

OFFENSE: D

Ohio State did not score its first touchdown until 9:36 was left in the game. It rushed for only 76 yards and averaged just over three yards per carry, which has been its average gain on running plays in its last four game. It had only one rushing play that gained 10 yards or more and had so little faith in its running game that it passed the ball on fourth and goal at Purdue’s 2-yard line late in the third quarter.

Quarterback Dwayne Haskins put up huge numbers with 49 completions in 73 attempts for 470 yards and two touchdowns. The completions, attempts and yards were all Ohio State records for a quarterback in a game.

The offensive line struggled in run blocking again and allowed Purdue to get enough pressure on Haskins that he seemed in a hurry to get rid of the ball a few times. Ohio State got into the red zone (inside Purdue’s 20-yard line) four times when the game was still close and got only two field goals out of those possessions.

DEFENSE: D

At halftime, the defense was not getting as much blame as the offense. But by the end of the game it was an equal partner with the offense when responsibility was being assigned.

There is not much positive to say about allowing Purdue quarterback David Blough to throw for 378 yards and three touchdowns while allowing D.J. Knox to run for 128 yards and wide receiver Rondale Moore to catch 12 passes for 170 yards.

OSU’s defense looked like it might have gotten tired or maybe got a little discouraged in the fourth quarter when it gave up three touchdowns in eight minutes.

Purdue had four touchdowns in that quarter, all on big plays – three of them while OSU’s defense was on the field. In the fourth quarter, the Boilermakers scored on runs of 42 yards and 40 yards, a 43-yard pass and a 41-yard interception return.

SPECIAL TEAMS: C

Blake Haubeil hit 2 of 3 field goals, making a 23-yarder and a 24-yarder and missing from 33 yards. The punt coverage team allowed Purdue to get a first down on a fake field goal after Haubeil’s miss. One play later the Boilermakers scored a touchdown for a 14-3 halftime lead.

OVERALL: D

Purdue was better than advertised and certainly better than it was when it lost its first three games. It scored first and Ohio State never led.

Ohio State walked a tight rope to get its biggest win of the year at Penn State. It played poorly in the first half of wins against Indiana and Minnesota. It had to come from behind to beat TCU.

But none of those efforts were as lacking as the Buckeyes’ performance against Purdue. When people start comparing a game to last year’s 55-24 loss at Iowa, that is not a good thing. OSU is off this week before playing Nebraska on Nov. 3. It might need the extra time to fix everything that went wrong against Purdue.

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