Sore Buckeyes looking to maintain hex on Indiana
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Urban Meyer may not know the brutal details of all those previous Ohio State-Indiana games.
Really, there's no need to.
With a first-year coach at Ohio State, a second-year coach at Indiana and new-school approaches in both places, there will be a new evolution to this series Saturday night.
"Everybody's trying to get an advantage and this (hurry-up offense) is an advantage if you know what you're doing," said Meyer, the Buckeyes coach. "I have a coaching staff, a guy that's done that a lot. I didn't have a big background in that hurry-up. We ran the spread, but we were not a hurry-up team, so this hurry-up is kind of new to me."
The goal, of course, is to run more plays than the other team and score points by the dozens.
But there are risks in going too fast.
If the offense doesn't pick up first downs, defenses can spend far too much time on the field — as Indiana (2-3, 0-2 Big Ten) has sometimes learned the hard way. Players get weary.
Indiana and Ohio State (6-0, 2-0) seem to have it at least partially figured out how to make it all work.
Both are scoring more than 32 points per game, and while the Buckeyes have the conference's No. 2 rushing offense (248.7 yards), the Hoosiers have the league's top passing offense (305.2). The contrasting styles should make for an interesting night.
"I have no control over how many points they score and how our defense does, but every single time I go out on the field, our goal is to score a touchdown," Indiana quarterback Cameron Coffman said. "Just like any game we play, no matter what offense we're playing, we're going to try to score as much as we can. That's still the goal this week."
On paper, there's little doubt about which team has the edge.
The Buckeyes are the Big Ten's highest-ranked team, its only unbeaten team and can lean on Heisman Trophy candidate Braxton Miller to bail them out of all kinds of trouble.
Ohio State's fans have traditionally outnumbered Indiana's, even in Bloomington's Memorial Stadium where Saturday's game will be played, and the tale of the tape explains why. In what has been one of the Midwest's most lopsided series, the Buckeyes have won 17 straight over the Hoosiers and are 48-2-2 against Indiana since 1952. Ohio State's average victory margin over that span: 22.7 points.
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