When Ohio State took a 31-0 drubbing at the hands of Clemson in the Fiesta Bowl, OSU fans, players and alumni were understandably shocked and disappointed. How could the mighty Buckeyes get so embarrassed on a national stage?
Former OSU running back and 1995 Heisman Trophy winner Eddie George has an idea. “It came down to one thing for me in that game, and that was the lack of faith in running the football with [OSU freshman running back] Mike Weber. He only had one carry in the first half. You’re playing against Clemson for a chance to go to the National Championship, you’ve got to control the line of scrimmage and they failed to do that,” George told STACK.
Weber ran the ball one time for 5 yards in the first half. He carried it four times in the second half, but fumbled twice. He finished with five carries for 24 rushing yards, both season lows. Weber had no fewer than 11 carries in any previous Ohio State game.
Moving forward, George believes Ohio State can bounce back by rebuilding its offensive line and improving its ground game.
“They’ve got to address a few things offensively. They’ve got to retool the offensive line. They’ve got to answer some questions about their identity offensively. They have to develop a running game that they can depend on,” George said. “So they’ve got some tough questions to ask and changes to make, but I think they’ll bounce back from this.”
Ohio State fans certainly hope so.
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