How the Ohio State offense is getting its swagger back

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How the Ohio State offense is getting its swagger back

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Ohio State running back Mike Weber carries the ball against Maryland.

We’ve reached the point in the football preseason that themes can start to run into the ground. 

“How will X be better than it was last year, coach?” is a well-worn question in July and August. 

Whatever went wrong a season ago is inevitably a central theme to the following preseason. 

Such as it is with an Ohio State offense that was at times explosive but also disappeared during key moments of an 11-2 2016 season. 

Kevin Wilson was hired as the new offensive coordinator with a charge of making things better, especially when it comes to the passing game. 

We have seen glimpses of strategic tweaks he’s made (thanks to the spring game and a few open practice windows), but what if the key to having a more consistent offense is simply good vibrations? 

“I think he’s provided more confidence in the running game,” running back Antonio Williams said of Wilson. “We feel a lot better about a lot of things. He’s brought a different vibe.” 

Wait, if that’s the case, should Urban Meyer have hired Brian Wilson instead of Kevin Wilson? 

Probably not, but Williams sounded convinced a more confident approach will pay dividends this fall. 

“I think it’s just his attitude, his vibes, the way he approaches things,” Williams said. “The way he talks about the running game, he just does it in a different manner.”  

Ok, that sounds good, but it’s sort of hard to grasp. We have to ask: Does is really even mean anything, or is it just something you say in interviews? 

Well, running backs coach Tony Alford agreed with Williams’ assessment. 

After describing Wilson’s impact on the running game as “awesome” because of the increased tempo of the Ohio State offense (like a little deuce coup?), Alford elaborated on the sophomore’s take. 

“I think that when your leader or the person who stands before you in any realm speaks with confidence and has a little bit of swagger, if you will, that lends itself to the people he’s speaking to to have confidence in what’s going on,” Alford said. 

“And then all that we’re going to ask you to do is do your job. Here’s the plan. Here’s how it’s going to work. Here’s why it’s going to work. Now just do your job. Then we can show proof of when you do your job, it works.”

 

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