The Ohio State football team is undefeated heading into their game with Purdue. They are undefeated in large part because of how good the defense has been and how well they’ve thrown the ball. The running game has had moments, but not enough of them.
The main reason why the running game has been so bad, especially in short-yardage situations, is because of the poor play of the offensive line. The Buckeyes have struggled to get any sort of push up front. Whether it’s on the outside or up the middle, Ohio State just can’t win the line of scrimmage.
Who’s at fault for this? Is it the offensive linemen themselves? Is it Ryan Day for his play-calling? Or is it Justin Frye’s for not coaching the linemen properly? While all three deserve at least some blame, Frye should bear the brunt of it because this isn’t a one-year blip.
The Ohio State football team struggled in short-yardage scenarios last year too. That was also with a first-round left tackle and two other offensive linemen who got drafted. The talent was clearly there to block better. Yet for some reason, they couldn’t get the job done.
Frye was brought in to help fix the recruiting issues that Greg Studrawa left behind on the offensive line. There is no depth up front because Studrawa was lazy on the recruiting trail. That’s not Frye’s fault, but he hasn’t exactly lit the world on fire on the recruiting trail either.
As far as performance on the field is concerned, this team should be better up front. Pass protection hasn’t been a huge problem, which is good. That’s why they are such a good passing team. They still need to be able to run the ball better than what they have.
Frye needs to get this offensive line to respond to this adversity. If he doesn’t, Day might find someone else who can achieve that goal.