Five questions to consider while Ohio State is off for the second time in the last three weeks:
1. Does Ohio State need the rest of the Big Ten to be strong to get into the College Football Playoff or can the Buckeyes make it on just their own body of work?
The perception of this year’s OSU team seems to be different than the last two seasons. That would all change if the Buckeyes take a bad loss, like Purdue last season or Iowa in 2017. But for now it is difficult to imagine an undefeated Ohio State team being kept out of the playoff, regardless of how the rest of the conference does.
2. Which game should scare Ohio State fans more, Penn State at home Nov. 23 or at Michigan a week later?
Penn State might be more explosive offensively that Michigan, at least while K.J. Hamler is on the field. And the Nittany Lions have to be seething about letting big leads get away late in the game the last two years against Ohio State.
But that game is at home. Michigan certainly will be motivated and Ohio State could be a bit beaten up from the Penn State game. That doesn’t mean Michigan will win, but it does make it dangerous.
3. Does anyone want to see Ohio State’s back-up quarterbacks in a game with OSU ahead by less than three touchdowns?
No they don’t.
4. Could Chase Young make a serious run at the Heisman Trophy?
With 13.5 sacks in eight games, including four in the big game against Wisconsin last week, Ohio State’s all-universe defensive end suddenly has people saying he’s a Heisman candidate.
But all it will take to get that Heisman love flowing toward a more traditional candidate is something like Joe Burrow throwing five touchdown passes in an LSU win over Alabama next week or Tua Tagovailoa limping on the field and throwing for four scores.
5. What would be the best national championship game?
From an Ohio State standpoint, OSU against Burrow and LSU.