Ohio State Football: Urban Meyer has blueprint for defeating Wisconsin

ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 12: Head Coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes hugs Quarterback Cardale Jones
ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 12: Head Coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes hugs Quarterback Cardale Jones /

Simple keys to an Ohio State win.

The Big Ten Championship Game between No. 8 Ohio State and No. 4 Wisconsin should be a very good matchup. However, Urban Meyer has the edge because he has a blueprint for how to defeat the Badgers.

If you don’t believe me just think back to the 2014 season and look at the similarities with both teams this year.

Wisconsin came into the championship game three years ago on a roll, winning seven consecutive games and 10 of 11. The Badgers also had the best running back in the nation in Melvin Gordon and a top 5 defense.

This year Jonathan Taylor has already rushed for 1,800 yards and Wisconsin has the top defense in the country. And once again Ohio State is on the outside looking in when it comes to the College Football Playoff.

To make the final four the Buckeyes must again have a dominating performance. Why not do the things that worked so well in their 59-0 victory in 2014? They certainly have the players at the right positions to do so.

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First, Ohio State must put the clamps on Taylor like they did Gordon who only gained 76 yards on 26 carries. The Buckeyes have the No. 13 ranked rush defense so it’s possible to keep the freshman under 100 yards if that’s the emphasis of defensive coordinator Greg Schiano.

Second, feed the ball to the running backs and give the Badgers a taste of their own medicine. The Buckeyes rushed 38 times and only threw 18 passes in the 2014 Big Ten Championship Game. and Ezekiel Elliott ran for 220 yards. JK Dobbins has already rushed for eight more yards this season than Elliott had entering that game, and Mike Weber has been on a roll of late. Just feed these two backs the ball.

Now for the third key. In the 2014 championship game, Devin Smith caught 4 passes for  137 yards and 3 scores. He was a deep threat all season averaging over 20 yards per reception but was never targeted like he was in the Wisconsin game.

This season, Ohio State wide receiver Johnnie Dixon’s numbers are similar to Smith’s in 2014. Why not target him a few times downfield?

Next: Predictions for conference championship games

See the blueprint is right there for another Ohio State win over Wisconsin. I hope Urban Meyer follows it.