Game of the Night

Thursday’s Game of the Night is the first (and hopefully not last) non-baseball post. Tonight marks the return of College Football and what a way to kick of the season with one of the great programs in the country Ohio State take on the Marshall Thundering Herd in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State went 11-2 last season and won their fifth consecutive Big Ten title.

Ohio St. has one of the nations most exciting players in College in quarterback Terrelle Pryor, once described as the Lebron James of football, Pryor has received mix reviews in his two years starting for the Buckeyes. In 2009, Pryor threw for 2094 yards completing 56.6% of his passes with 18 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. He also lead the Buckeyes in rushing 779 yards with seven rushing touchdowns on 4.8 yards per carry. The junior only threw over 200 yards in a game three times during the year, while only having two games throwing three plus touchdowns. Pryor will have his two favorite receiving options returning in Devier Posey and Dane Sanzenbacher. Posey plays the Santonio Holmes/Teddy Ginn Jr. roll on 60 catches Posey had 828 yards and eight touchdowns. Sanzenbacher plays the Anthony Gonzalez/Brian Hartline roll catching 36 balls with 570 yards and four td’s.

If the 2009 Rose Bowl MVP doesn’t develop as the passer coach Jim Tressel hoped he would when he arrived on campus in 2008, “The Sweater Vest” will have two horses to hand the ball of to in senior Brandon Saine and junior Daniel Herron. Saine on 145 carries last year ran for 739 yards, averaging 5.1 yards a carry and four touchdowns. Herron was equally effective out of the backfield on 153 carries the junior ran for 600 yards and seven touchdowns. Ball control is Ohio St. game in Columbus this season with a defense that ranked in the top five in the nation last year returns its anchor defensive tackle Cameron Heyward as well as its two top tacklers in Ross Homan and Brian Rolle. The Buckeyes held opponents to 12.5 points per game in 2009.

Marshall was 6-6 in Conference USA, is led by a new coach this year in Doc Holliday, are 0-13 against BCS opponents since 2005. Holliday was a member of Urban Meyer’s staff on Florida’s 2006 national championship team. Holliday is gonna rely on running back Darius Marshall, the junior is the heart and soul of The Herd, running for back to back 1000 yards season. In 2009 Marshall ran for 1131 yards averaging 5 yards a carry and 11 td’s to boot.

The Buckeyes, who haven’t dropped a home opener since a 19-0 loss to Penn State in 1978, will try to avoid another scare in their first game after holding on for a 31-27 win over Navy last year.

Ohio State most recently faced Marshall in 2004, winning 24-21.

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