November 19, 2013

Hot 11: Post Illinois

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COLUMBUS, Ohio - The good news is the Buckeyes won their last game by 25 points and have now tied the program's all-time win streak at 22 consecutive games. But apparently a 25 points win against Illinois was not good enough in the eyes of some voters whereas a 29 point win by Baylor was impressive enough to close the gap in the BCS between the Bears and Buckeyes.

BCS politics however do not play a role in deciding Ohio State's Hot 11, a list of the top 11 players on the team, not based upon the outing of just one game but rather a list that reflects the whole season of work.

Carlos Hyde had a career day with five touchdowns and it was pretty much a given that he would climb the one spot back to the top of the list for his performance. But how will the voters react to Braxton Miller's inconsistent game? And how about the defense that did some things very well and other things pretty poorly as the Illini scored 35 points (even though seven were by way of special teams) against the Buckeyes?

This week we were able to get the list back down from 12 to the original 11 but it was not without controversy as four players were all within a razor's edge for that 11th spot on the list.

It is never an easy job ranking the top players from week to week, and there are usually several guys that just miss the cut. We encourage everyone
to head over to the The Horseshoe Lounge to offer up their own opinions.

1. Carlos Hyde

Running Back


6-0, 235 pounds
Hyde ran for 246 yards on 24 carries and had four touchdowns including ones of 55 and 51 yards to help get the Buckeyes to 60 points in the 4th quarter. Hyde also had an 18-yard TD reception from Miller in the first quarter. Hyde is now 53 yards away from the 1,000-yard plateau and would be Urban Meyer's first 1,000-yard rusher (as a running back).

Last Week: 2
2. Braxton Miller



6-2, 215 pounds
Miller did not have his best passing game of the season by any stretch as the wind and Miller never got on the same page. Braxton ended up 13-29 for 150 yards and 2 touchdowns, a much better outing than his last trip to Champaign (1-4 passing). Miller did look good on the ground with 184 yards including a 70-yard TD run to start Ohio State's scoring.

Last Week: 1
3. Ryan Shazier


6-2, 230 pounds
Shazier was honored as the B1G Defensive Player of the Week and had 16 tackles against the Illini including 3.5 TFL and 1.5 sacks. The pressure was on Shazier to perform with fellow starting linebackers Joshua Perry and Curtis Grant out of the game. Shazier has been playing his best football as of late and needs to continue the upward trend as the Bucks race for the finish line.

Last Week: 4
4. Jack Mewhort

Offensive Tackle

6-6, 308 pounds
Ohio State ran for 441 yards against the Illini and many of those yards came when the Illini knew exactly what the Buckeyes were going to do, pound the ball to Hyde. Mewhort has been dealing with a little bit of an injury and did not play the entire game against Illinois but his value is that much more apparent, when he is not on the field and the Toledo-native is easily one of the most valuable players on the team.

Last Week: 3
5. Andrew Norwell

Offensive Guard


6-6, 316 pounds
Norwell was singled out as the offensive lineman that had the best game this weekend for the Buckeyes and our voters noticed and moved him up a couple of spots. Andrew really has become one of the focal points of the line and is challenging Mewhort for top lineman as the team comes down the stretch.

Last Week: 6
6. Noah Spence

Defensive End


6-3, 252 pounds
Spence leads the Buckeyes in sacks for the season with 7.5 and added one of those against the Illini along with two quarterback hurries and a pass break-up. The scariest thing for opposing teams is that Spence is only a sophomore.

Last Week: 8
7. Michael Bennett

Defensive Tackle


6-3, 285 pounds
Ohio State chalked up 10 tackles for loss and Bennett had his hand in 1.5 of them to go with a half sack and six tackles overall. Bennett leads the team in forced fumbles (two) and fumble recoveries (two) and while players like Spence and Joey Bosa get more headlines, Bennett may be the most consistent of the players on the line.

Last Week: 5
8. Corey Brown

Wide Receiver


6-0, 190 pounds
Philly had more than half of the receptions that Ohio state recorded in the game with seven and had one of the two receiving touchdowns on the afternoon. Brown leads the team with 49 receptions overall and a team-high nine touchdowns. The Buckeyes have done a great job in sharing the wealth but Brown holds the edge right now.

Last Week: 7
9. C.J. Barnett



6-1, 204 pounds
Barnett racked up 14 tackles against the Illini and had the first interception of the game against Nathan Scheelhaase. Barnett was also credited with a PBU as well in the game. Barnett is second overall on the team in tackles with 56 and now has six career interceptions.

Last Week: 9
10. Bradley Roby



5-11, 192 pounds
Roby makes his second appearance on the Hot 11 of the season and had a big 63-yard interception return for a touchdown in the first quarter of the game. Roby started the season slow and has been victimized at times for being overly aggressive. He is starting to play very consistent football and while he may still be a little too aggressive for the liking of some, he is turning it on at the right time for Ohio State.

Last Week: NR
11. Joey Bosa

Defensive End


6-6, 275 pounds
Bosa was knocked out of the game in the 3rd quarter but what he did in the first half, coupled with what he has done this year got him the nod to make the list. Bosa had 2.5 sacks in essentially one half of play including one where he dropped the Illinois QB while reaching through his man for one of the more spectacular sacks of the season. Bosa is tied for 2nd on the team in sacks on the year (4.5).

Last Week: NR

Others Receiving Votes: Doran Grant, Corey Linsley, Cameron Johnston, Jeff Heuerman, Dontre Wilson, Devin Smith, Kenny Guiton

Dropped Out: Jeff Heuerman, Devin Smith, Corey Linsley


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