Wow what a weekend! The Indians take 2 from the White Sox, and maintain their lead in the Central. A gem of a game pitched by Paul Byrd Saturday night. Complete Game shutout, and the offense wasn’t bad either scoring 7 runs on 11 hits, with homers from Shoppach and Gutierrez. I didn’t get to see much of the game, so I won’t pretend like I know what happened. It was good to see the Tribe not let up after consecutive late inning wins. The eight game winning streak came to end Sunday against the Sox. It was a good streak, hope they start another one tomorrow in Minnesota. As we’ve talked about all season, the Tribe needs to keep winning series. They won the series with Chicago, and now we go on the road for a series with the Twins, the Angels, and the White Sox. I’d like to see the Tribe go at least 6-4 on this trip, though 3 of 4 from the Angels would be sweet as well.
On Saturday the Buckeyes opened their season with a win over Youngstown State. In my Buckeye preview part 2, I questioned why play a Division 1AA school; saying simply that nothing good can come from it. Well, for the Buckeyes they get some tape to review, and some areas to concentrate on. (Like the short yardage running game.) But the stunner of all was what happened to michigan. That is exactly what I meant by nothing good could come of it. Had the ground hogs made that field goal to win the game, what would have been said about them? How much respect would they have lost in the polls? Surely not as much as they are destined to lose now. For the Buckeyes they also lost a key player. DL Lawrence Wilson fractured his leg in the second quarter, and his status for the remainder of the season is unclear.
Todd Boeckman had a nice game, completing 17 of 23 for 225 and 2 scores. His primary target all day was Brian Robiskie. In fact, it seemed like Robiskie was the only receiver in Boeckman’s sight until he neared the goal line. Robiskie finished with 9 catches for 153 yards. Sanzenbacher, Taurian Washington, and Trevor Robinson all caught short passes for touchdowns. The disappointment may have been in the running game. Chris Wells had a very disappointing first half, and finished the game with only 46 yards on 16 carries. Maurice Wells ran hard when he was given the chance, and finished with 45 yards on only 6 touches. The story of the game as far as I was concerned was Brandon Saine. The freshman had 42 yards on 10 carries and a touchdown, plus he had a nice 16 yard run for a TD that was called back. It was an impressive run, but would have been a better play had he actually followed his blocks.
Like coach Tressel said in his post game comments, I was disappointed in the running game. You expect us to be able to push a 1AA team’s line around a little. They were certainly not as big or strong as OSU. Hopefully they will work out these issues and come back strong next week. I don’t see any reason they should have much trouble with Akron. Then again…
Nobody saw Appalachian State coming. I don’t care who said what in any pre-game show, Appalachian State was supposed to be a cupcake game for michigan. What a nightmare it turned out to be. My family went to dinner in Lima, Ohio Saturday night. We went to Cracker Barrel, and guess who we ran into there- Appy State fans on their way home from Ann Arbor. (I don’t blame them for not wanting to eat in michigan.) We chatted about the game and offered our congratulations. One of the guys in the group had purchased a michigan shirt with the schedule on the back, so he could write in a big L with a sharpie for the Appy State game. That was awesome. Good times all around. Of course now we will have to listen all
week er… month about how weak the Big Ten is. There will be jokes about Appalachian State joining the conference. There will be suggestions about Lloyd Carr being replaced by the head coach at Appy State. (That would be kind of funny though.) The best thing might be the new way we can zing michigan- for example, if they manage to beat Notre Dame, we could simply say “Well, they’re no Appalachian State!” Think of it, that’s 2 slams for the price of one!
What kind of defense are they trying to play there in michigan? In their last three games they gave up 42 points to the Buckeyes, 32 points to USC, and 34 points to Appalachian State? That’s bad news. Maybe Lloyd Carr’s shouldn’t be the only job in jeopardy. You know part of me wanted them to be undefeated when we go to Ann Arbor and beat them. Think of how much pressure would have been on them for that game. Now the only thing they have to play for is their pride. They will be hungry. I bet I know 3 wood chucks that would like to have that decision to return for another year back now.