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Ohio State looks incredible and won’t be stopped soon

On Monday night, the Ohio State Buckeyes began their college football title defense on the road against the Virginai Tech Hokies. It started off with a bang. Ohio State trailed 17-14 at the half but rallied to crush the home tea, 42-24, in front of a packed house in Blacksburg, Va.

Most times when a college team is looking to repeat, it has been taken apart by the NFL Draft. This Ohio State team might actually be stronger than the last. All you need to do is look at the quarterback situation with Cardale Jones and J.T. Barrett. Both could be Heisman Trophy candidates if starting, something Barrett won’t be doing as Jones is the leading man.

Against Virginia Tech, Jones threw for 186 yards on 9-of-18 passing with a pair of touchdowns and one interception on a tipped ball. Meanwhile, Barrett came in to relieve Jones when the issue was settled and completed his only pass of the night for a 26-yard touchdown pass to Michael Thomas late in the fourth quarter.

Last year’s starting quarterback, Braxton Miller, actually moved from quarterback out to wide receiver. Miller, hoping to get a chance to play, showed off why Urban Meyer and the rest of his coaching staff believe Miller can make a difference on the perimeter. Miller ran six times for 62 yards and a score, including a 53-yard scoring scamper in the third quarter. Miller also led Ohio State in receiving with two catches for 78 yards, including a 54-yard touchdown.

In the backfield, Heisman Trophy candidate Ezekiel Elliott ran for a game-high 122 yards and a score on only 11 carries. In the first quarter, Elliott broke a run up the middle for an 80-yard touchdown, showcasing his elite burst. Elliott is likely to be a first-round pick in next year’s NFL Draft, a scary combination of speed, agility and power.

If you are waiting for Ohio State to stub its toe and fall out of the top spot in both the USA Today and Associated Press polls, you could be frustrated. The Buckeyes play Hawaii, Northern Illinois and Western Michigan over the next three weeks at home in Columbus, Oh., before taking on the Indiana Hoosiers in their Big 10 opener.

In fact, the only real test that the Buckeyes will face throughout the entire regular season is on Nov. 21, the penultimate game, against the Michigan State Spartans. Michigan State is ranked fifth in the country and has a nasty defense along with one of the premiere quarterbacks in the land with Connor Cook, but the game is a home date for Ohio State.

After that, a trip to face Jim Harbaugh and the Michigan Wolverines lay ahead. While Ohio State is clearly the superior team, you can never overlook a rivalry like that.

Still, the Buckeyes are primed for another long run into the college football playoffs.

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