Ohio State is favored by 33 points over Maryland in the Buckeyes’ homecoming game that kicks off at 12pm EST on The Big Ten Network. While Ohio State fans are hoping for the Buckeyes to come out with an impressive performance against the Maryland Terrapins, Maryland fans are wondering if this will be the final coaching appearance by Randy Edsall. Edsall is rumored to be on the firing line, according to social media…
While Randy Edsall has been rumored to be on the hot seat, I must confess that I believed Maryland would not fire him until January 2017. My reasoning is that Edsall signed a contract extension that would obligate Maryland to pay Edsall millions if terminated before January 2017. Maryland also made the move to The B1G in an effort to improve its financial standing; this move would certainly put a crimp on those financial plans. (My podcasting partner Shannon Sommers did ask our guest Daniel Gallen (@danieljtgallen) about Edsall’s job security on the latest Men of the Scarlet and Gray podcast, by the way.)
Instead of dwelling on ‘what if’s’ and ‘what might be’s’ that may happen as they relate to Maryland’s coaching situation, here are three areas that I will be focusing upon during the actual game between Ohio State and Maryland in Ohio Stadium…
1. Ohio State Establishing An Offensive Identity ~ Run the ball with Ezekiel Elliott. Hit Michael Thomas for easy short gains along the sideline. Throw deep to keep Maryland from putting eight or nine in the box. Once these elements have been established, then the lateral plays involving Braxton Miller or Jalin Marshall can be incorporated.
2. Avoiding Turnovers ~ Easier written than done for this Ohio State team. Ohio State has been far too generous with the ball. It is time for Ohio State to not only demonstrate true ball security, but also punish players with loss of playing time if the transgressions continue.
3. Red Zone Efficiency ~ Field goals are nice, but touchdowns are what put a smile on the face of Ohio State Head Coach Urban Meyer. Once within the red zone, figure out the easiest and most efficient way to get the ball into the end zone for six points.
Maryland was facing an uphill battle coming into this game, and the Randy Edsall rumors are only pouring gasoline onto the fire. Coach Meyer can use this game to get ready for the big November stretch run. I have it Ohio State 42, Maryland 7.