Previewing the Buckeye Game – Take 1

Courtesy of Adam Cairns and the Columbus Dispatch
Courtesy of Adam Cairns and the Columbus Dispatch

Obviously, UC’s first two games of the year are vitally important. Of course, it’s imperative that they beat Toledo and Miami. Naturally, no game should be taken lightly.  Even so…

After a 2-0 start, the Bearcats will travel to 411 Woody Hayes Drive in the third week of the season.  The Bearcats will enter the not-so-friendly confines of Ohio Stadium as a likely 10+ point underdog to play the Buckeyes.  Upsets happen. That’s why we play the game.     

The Bearcats will play tOSU for what I’m labeling the #UCcredibilitytestgameofthecentury.  Unlike the Sugar Bowl experience a few years ago, I’m hoping the Bearcats don’t get Tebow’d.  Or Braxton’d.  I’ll never forget how I felt walking out of the Superdome and onto Bourbon Street after watching Tebow and Aaron Hernandez shred the Bearcats secondary.  The UC taunts turned to Gator chomps. 

Hopefully the Bearcats can handle this big stage this early in the season.  The bottom line is it matters how they play on that day…in front of that crowd…in the capital city.   

As you know, Bearcats fans have long thought that the Bucks dodge in-state competition.  On the other hand, Buckeyes fans have long thought that the Bearcats don’t deserve a seat at the grown-up table.

The game kicks off at 6 P.M. on September 27, will be televised by the B1G Network, and will provide the Bearcats and Gunner and Tuberville and Co. with their first real test of the season.  Historically, in games that start after 5 PM, tOSU is 10-3 at home. But history means very little (unless you desperately cling to it like most tOSU fans…zing).

There are a number of questions that will need to be answered by Tuberville’s Bearcats, like:

Can the Bearcats offensive line protect Gunner (or Munchie or some other signal caller) from the likes of Michael Bennett, Noah Spence, Aldophus Washington, and Joey Bosa?

Can Gunner handle the big stage?  If Gunner wanted to play on the big stage, he’ll certainly get his chance on September 27.

Can the Bearcats hold the Bucks to less than 150 yards on the ground and stick to a scheme that contains Heisman-hopeful Braxton Miller?

Check back as I spotlight each of the above questions in the coming days.

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