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Some Good Some Bad in Bucks - Navy Game

After the close win over Navy there are a few things that concern me. Number one is Anderson Russell must know that there is a bull’s-eye on him now to every offensive coordinator the Bucks face. Russell has given up by my count three big plays in the Bucks last two games. There was Texas’s touchdown in the Fiesta Bowl, Ricky Dobbs first rushing touchdown in the Navy game, and the touchdown that led to the intercepted two point conversion. Much of Andre Amos’s career has been hampered by injury and Russell is on a streak of giving up big plays. Will the Buckeyes secondary be able to keep the USC offense in check or will we see Russell’s streak continue?
Staying with defense but moving on to the good, I thought we did alright. Not particularly well, but good. Brian Rolle was a force. He definitely let it be known to the Navy offense that he came to play even before the interception. The defense did a good job at keeping Navy’s ground game in check with only allowing 186 yards on 44 attempts. In Navy’s win last year over a ranked Wake Forest they had almost 300 yards on the ground. The ground game wasn’t working for Navy which is why they started going to the air. In the past 5 years Navy has averaged 122 passes a season. In Saturday’s game they took 13 passes roughly 10 percent of their average pass attempts over the past 5 seasons. Navy’s coordinators knew the Bucks were watching the run and took advantage of the play action. Another thing that I really liked was defenses ability to force turnovers.
Going on to the offense we have to convert the third downs, 3 – 12 on third down is just terrible. Through the one game of the season we are tied for 83’rd in the country on third down conversions. Maybe we wouldn’t have had so many third downs to convert if our line would play well. The run blocking was alright but the pass protection was absolutely terrible. USC’s defense is coming into the game with 5 sacks so the line better be ready to protect Pryor. One thing that lets me breathe a little bit easy about the USC game is USC is tied for 97’th in third down conversions. I watched some of the San Jose State - USC game over the weekend and USC’s offensive line was getting blown back at least 3 yards off the line of scrimmage. If San Jose can get USC off the line of scrimmage we should have no problem with it.
Hopefully the Buckeyes can fix what they need to and hopefully they can continue to improve on the good things.

-Derek Blair