It’s not often that a team gets excited when they face the Ohio State No.9, but the worst time to face the Buckeyes is probably when they’ve just lost. Last week’s 35-28 home loss to Oregon marked the first regular-season loss for coach Ryan Day and the program’s first regular-season loss since being shocked by Purdue 49- 20 in 2018. This Buckeyes team would respond by winning 19 straight games over the next few seasons and a half.
Clearly, Tulsa has his work cut out for him on Saturday when he travels to Columbus, Ohio, and faces an angry Ohio State team.
It won’t be the first time Tulsa has made the trip to northern Ohio. The Golden Hurricane played at Ohio Stadium at the start of the 2016 season to face a No.4-ranked Ohio State team at the time. Hurricane kept this game close for most of the first half and trailed just 6-3 at the end of the second quarter before a few steals changed things quickly. Ohio State took a 20-3 lead at halftime and widened the lead further, winning the game 48-3. Check out LIVE updates for the best games of week 3.
Ohio State vs Tulsa: Need to Know
Who will call the defense of the state of Ohio? The person who took the most heat after the loss to Oregon was defensive coordinator Kerry Coombs, who took over last season after Jeff Hafley left to coach Boston College. Under Hafley, the defense of the state of Ohio was one of the most powerful units in the country. Last season under Coombs, the defense fell to 59th nationally in yards against per game, 77th in yards against per game and 43rd in points against per game.
So far in 2021, the Buckeyes rank 112th, 105th and 109th in those same categories. When asked at his weekly press conference on defensive appeal duties this week against Tulsa, Ryan Day was evasive in his responses. That could mean it won’t be Coombs.
CJ Stroud lives up to the hype: The Ohio State loss overshadowed how well Stroud played against the Ducks. While there has been a lot of attention that Stroud has yet to be for the state of Ohio – namely, not Justin Fields – few mention what he did. Over the course of two weeks, Stroud leads the Big Ten in passing yards per game (389), passing yards per attempt (10.2) and touchdowns (seven). These same statistics rank respectively second, eleventh and fourth in the country.
In other words, Stroud has been a great start to his career, despite a few missed shots.
Tulsa has a 14-game losing streak against the Power Five: The Golden Hurricane have just had a strong 2020 season, but have struggled in non-conference games against opponents from the Power Five for some time. Tulsa has lost 14 straight games to the Power Five and 24 of their last 25. The last victory dates back to 2012 when he beat Iowa State 31-17 in the Liberty Bowl to cap an 11-3 season. However, the hurricane has been approaching lately. They lost to Oklahoma State 28-23 last week after a 16-7 loss to Stillwater last season. In last year’s Armed Forces Bowl, Tulsa nearly upended the state of Mississippi, but almost failed in a 28-26 loss.
How to watch Ohio State vs Tulsa live
Dated: Saturday September 18 | Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
Site: Ohio Stadium – Columbus, Ohio
TV: FS1 | Direct: fuboTV (Try for free)
Ohio State vs Tulsa prediction, pick
It’s probably one of those “wrong place, wrong time” games for Tulsa. Ohio State will be looking to make a strong statement following last week’s loss and Tulsa offers a solid opportunity to do so – especially for a defense that has struggled and needs a reason to feel good about itself. While Tulsa went 6-3 last season, he did so largely through his defense, as he scored just 27.1 points per game (74th nationally). This season, Tulsa has scored 40 points in two games. I can’t imagine he will score enough points to hang on to an Ohio State offense that has already proven to be extremely explosive. Prediction: Ohio State (-24.5)
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