The QB whisperer trump card and other random thoughts

Another busy week is upcoming, so it was time to clean out the reporter’s notebook again! 

  • For all the success Ohio State football has had over the years, it has never been known for its quarterbacking. Plenty of talented players have played the position, but not many pure passers with real NFL pedigree. And yet the Buckeyes have won more games than almost anyone. What could the Buckeyes do if they did have NFL quarterbacks on the reg? Something to ponder over the next few months…
  • To wit: If things work out for Ryan Day at Ohio State, his budding reputation as a quarterback whisperer could end up being the biggest key (beyond Ohio State being Ohio State). Obviously having consistent quarterback play is important, but think about it this way: A quarterback can be an equalizer when it comes to talent, which could give Day a little leeway even if he can't quite maintain the incredible recruiting level Urban Meyer established in Columbus. In the playoff era we've already seen great quarterbacks at Oklahoma (Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray), Clemson (Deshaun Watson) and Oregon (Marcus Mariota) take teams to the playoff despite not recruiting at quite the tip-top level (at that time).
  • UD lost its "whiteout" game but won the "red-out" while Wright State won its blackout game. Guess we'll never know if these really work or not…
  • The Bengals' questionable decision to hire a first-time head coach with a thin resume sure didn't start looking any better as he struggled to find a defensive coordinator, and the actual hire was not inspiring, either.
  • Will be really interesting to see what Bengals ticket sales look like this year. The fans' justifiable bailing on Marvin Lewis made bringing him back pretty much impossible, but at this point there is no reason to think they are better off from a competitive standpoint than if they had stuck with Lewis, who was also a much better candidate on paper when he was hired.
  • It has been so long I had almost forgotten a big difference between the Bengals when they are bad and the Browns when they are bad — at least the Browns fans get to enjoy the offseason.
  • "How To Get Toddlers To Sleep" posts are the most bogus thing on the internet.
  • I always assume a college basketball team can't shoot until they prove otherwise, so the second half of the Ohio State season has been less surprising than the first half.

  • Meanwhile, what a fluke that season-opening game at Cincinnati was. Winning in the Queen City was good for the always-under-developed Buckeye basketball brand though, and the Bearcats have recovered nicely, so it was a big net win for college basketball in the state. Guess that ends any debate about there being a downside to these teams playing…

  • Michigan State beat Michigan in a crucial Big Ten game Sunday, proving the Spartans are still better at MSU basketball than the Wolverines, who seem to have turned away from the beautiful brand of offensive-minded team basketball they were known for under John Beilein and embraced the clutch-and-grab, defense-first drudgery Tom Izzo's teams have used with great success over the past two decades. Maybe things will go better for the Wolverines in the rematch in two weeks, but for now I am just going to view them as MSU Lite.
  • Beilein's Michigan basketball has a lot in common with Jim Tressel's Ohio State football, although Tressel actually won a national title before losing two so maybe not.
  • Someone could make some money offering to clean up recipe blog posts across the internet. Just a little quality control would go a long way. Like, you know keep the narrative part under 1,000 words to start with. Maybe stick to about 100 just to be safe...
  • Here is a tough but fair takedown of LeBron James, his agent and the national NBA media from northeast Ohio-based writer Sam Amico in the wake of the Lakers-Anthony Davis debacle. On the heels of the Kevin Durant interview earlier this season, it will be interesting to see if more people come to realize LeBron is a great player who doesn't seem to do much anymore to deserve his reputation as a great teammate (don't hold your breath).
  • Speaking of national media failures, Bleacher Report found at least two people to anonymously diss Dwayne Haskins, comments that are both silly ("He's probably QB1 in this class, but that doesn't mean he's a good quarterback" and "…he's not Jared Goff or anything.") and worthless since there is no reason for a source to tell the truth if his or her name is not attached to the quote.
  • The Goff comparison actually could be interesting if we knew who was offering it because there seem to be a lot of different opinions on him. I loved his raw ability from the first time I saw him while scouting the Ohio State-Cal game his freshman year, but a lot of NFL folks turned on him almost immediately upon his arrival in the league because he wasn't instantly good for a bad team (a lot of NFL folks are dumb like that). He's enjoyed a resurgence under Sean McVay the last two years, but that has come with a caveat as McVay is known for making adjustments for him at the line of scrimmage via the helmet radio and most of Goff's success is confined to play-action passing.
  • Lastly, I didn't watch the Oscars, but I assume the fight scene between the baby and the raccoon in The Incredibles 2 won several.

“Random Thoughts” is a semi-regular feature here at this blog. While most of our other coverage is concentrated on news and analysis, this is a place to share opinions and have some fun. Have your own thoughts? Send them along to or find us on Twitter or Facebook.

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