Coming home to face Florida A&M, Ohio State fans can rest easy that this is a game that should present no concerns for the Buckeyes before B1G play begins. If you have heard this legendary story regarding tickets, the point is that this is the Ohio State game that should provide any fans the opportunity to find tickets easily. Even Gene Smith recently stated that this is a "challenging" game that may prove difficult to sell out for Ohio State.
Below are my wish list items for Florida A&M:
1. Rest Braxton Miller, and play Kenny Guiton versus Florida A&M: Not trying to fan this into a quarterback controversy, but I am of the opinion that resting Braxton Miller would be in the team's best interests for the 2013 season. A sprained MCL will only get better with rest. If Braxton Miller is not deemed 100%, rest him. Kenny Guiton is doing fine piloting the Ohio State offense. No need to put Miller in against Florida A&M and risk further injury.
2. Ease Carlos Hyde into playing time: Hyde will be understandably anxious to show what he can do, after serving his three game suspension. Instead of rushing Hyde into the lineup, I would hope Ohio State would play Hyde after Ohio State establishes a strong lead over Florida A&M. Happy to see others, such as Beau Bishop, agree with me on this point.
2) Carlos Hyde is going to have to be a beast to get carries, Jordan Hall has proven that he is worthy of being #1 back.
— BEAU BISHOP (@BeauBishop) September 15, 2013
3. Play backups the majority of the second half: More than likely, this game will get out of hand very quickly; Ohio State could possibly be up by forty points at the half. My hope would be to play the starters the first series of the third quarter, then turn the reins over to as many backups as possible ~ Cardale Jones. Warren Ball. Ezekiel Elliott. Rod Smith. Insert the backup offensive line, as Ohio State will lose four starters after this season. Nothing can take the place of actual game experience, and this may be one of the best opportunities for extensive game experience for these units. Play as many redshirt freshmen as possible; these players have already been redshirted, and can only get better by playing. Keep the starters healthy for the B1G games on the horizon. I have been advocating this philosophy for the first few weeks of the season, and others like Ben Axelrod seem to be thinking the same thing ~
Interesting that Braxton didn't even dress. Ohio State fans, you're one play away from Cardale Jones playing more than just school.
— Ben Axelrod (@BenAxelrod) September 14, 2013
Along those lines,
4. Last call for redshirts: If there is a member of the highly-touted freshman class that has not earned playing time yet, why waste a valuable year of eligibility? Even Coach Meyer has stated that Bri'onte Dunn and Michael Thomas may benefit from a redshirt year ~
Meyer indicated there's a chance Bri'onte Dunn & Michael Thomas will redshirt. #Buckeyes
— Dave Biddle (@davebiddle) September 11, 2013
Think back to 2005, when Ohio State played Brian Robiskie. Robiskie wound up playing sparingly in 2005, with only one catch. Yes, Robiskie concluded his Ohio State career in fine fashion, but Robiskie would have been better served by the previous coaching staff by using 2005 as a redshirt year, allowing Robiskie a chance to play in 2009.
In 2014, Ohio State will have Rod Smith, Warren Ball, and Bri'onte Dunn as running backs. While I am certain Dunn would like to play, it would probably be best for Dunn and the program to save a year of eligibility for 2014.
Look for this game to be over quickly. Ohio State should have no problem racking up the style points that have eluded them so far this season.