Friday, November 6, 2015

#Buckeyes Preview 11.6.15: #Minnesota Golden Gophers @ Ohio State

By @jddisantis

With Cardale Jones back under center, the Ohio State Buckeyes (8-0, 4-0 Big Ten) will look to continue their undefeated season as they host the Minnesota Golden Gophers (4-4, 1-3 Big Ten) Saturday night.  There was plenty to talk about, as this past week brought us a suspended starting quarterback for the Buckeyes and the #3 spot in the first set of College Football Playoff Rankings.

Coming off of a bye week, Ohio State will be without starting quarterback J.T. Barrett, after he was suspended by coach Urban Meyer for being charged with a misdemeanor OVI last weekend.  What is most disappointing about Barrett's arrest, was the first time captain was known as more mature than competing quarterback Cardale Jones, and a respected leader.  Not only is this bad for J.T. personally, but the offense once again has to try to figure out how to get in the end zone with Jones at quarterback.  The Buckeye offense had been rolling with J.T. starting, as he showed a better understanding of the read-option and had an overall better control and feel for the offense.

One of the underlying questions, is whether or not Meyer will give Jones the opportunity to win his job back this weekend.  It was obvious coach Meyer preferred Jones as it took coach a little longer than fans wanted for him to make the change to Barrett.  Although earlier this year, Meyer mentioned that the two have similar skill sets. The Buckeyes head coach this week said, "They're a little bit different styles.  J.T., he's a little bit more of a spread quarterback, where he reads ends and Cardale, although he can do it, we have a little bit more drop-back pass game in."

Minnesota will look to get their season back on track after getting stuffed at the goal line trying to go for a win instead of a tie against Michigan last week.  The Gophers are giving up an average of 23.9 points per game while only scoring 21.9.  After going 4-4 through the first eight games, Minnesota is looking to find enough wins to become bowl eligible.  The Gophers haven't won in Columbus since 2000.

What:  Ohio State Buckeyes vs. Minnesota Golden Gophers
When:  Saturday, November 7, at 8:00 PM ET
Where:  Ohio Stadium, Columbus Ohio
Watch:  ABC
Line:  OSU -23.5, O/U 53.5

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