Today marks the second Cheat Sheet in the series - a look at the upcoming opponent, what they bring to the field, what players could give OSU trouble. This way, you'll know what names to watch for on Saturday and what parts of the game could cause the Buckeyes some problems.
Hope this helps your enjoyment of another OSU victory. O-H!
Northwestern Wildcats (4-0)
The Buckeyes travel to Illinois this weekend to face the Northwestern Wildcats. After four impressive wins and an offense that is putting up big numbers, the Wildcats enjoyed a Bye Week to watch the Buckeyes play the Wisconsin Badgers and get ready for this Saturday night’s 8pm game. I'm hoping that the game SB Nation's Sippin' on Purple is calling the Biggest Game in Wildcats History turns out be a statement victory by the Buckeyes.
So far they've put up 48, 44, 38 and 35 points in wins this season. They have a very balanced offense, gaining 48 first downs by passing and 47 by rushing. As for yardage, 985 in the air and 998 on the ground. A lot of this is due to their two QB system which plays to the strengths of Colter and Siemian.
|The Colterian: two-headed QB|
QBs #2 Kain Colter, with 3 rushing TDs and #13 Trevor Siemian, the passing machine, share time based on game situations. Siemian leads the Big Ten in avg yards per passing completion with 14.6 and threw for nearly 400 yards vs Syracuse.
#22 Treyvon Green leads the rushing pack with an average of 101 yards per game and 5 TDs.
#5 Venric Mark, Senior RB and Punt Returner, will be back from a leg injury that kept him out of the past three games. I'm not sure how "healthy" or rusty he is, but keep an eye on him.
#6 Tony Jones leads the receiving corp with a 90.5 yards per game average and 3 TDs.
While the offense is busy putting up big numbers, so have their opponents. This defense has given up 30, 27, 17 and 21 points already. They are allowing an average 300+ passing yards per game and rank dead last in the Big Ten. The key to their success has been the offense but they do have a few guys worth watching. They have, however, forced four fumbles and gotten ten interceptions.
#45 LB Collin Ellis has two interceptions vs Cal - and returned BOTH for TDs
#24 S Ibraheim Campbell three INT's this year, ranked 5th nationally.
The Wildcat pass defense isn't great, but if you give them an opening, they'll take it. The Buckeyes need to keep the ball SAFE! Basically, this team is completely beatable if you score early and score often. The Wildcats get off to very slow starts, averaging only 6 first quarter points. If the Buckeyes can get points on the board early, even the tricky 2 QB System won't cause too much second-half trouble!