Ohio State Buckeyes in 2016 – Contenders or Not

Ohio State Buckeyes for 2016Last season, the Ohio State Buckeyes were coming off of a National Championship run. They were the odds-on favorite to repeat as champions. Although the Buckeyes got off to an undefeated start, they weren’t dominating teams like everyone thought they would. Also, they weren’t being tested by quality opponents. Last November however, the Buckeyes were tested and they failed in the final seconds.

Ohio State wound up being beat by a hungry Michigan State Spartans team at “The Horseshoe” in Columbus on a last-second field goal. They handed the Buckeyes their first and only lost, and broke their home winning streak. There was drama after the game between star running back Ezekiel Elliot and head coach Urban Meyer. Elliot was upset with Meyer and the coaching staff about him not getting the ball enough in the second half.

The Buckeyes would go on to win the Fiesta Bowl against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Now, players from the National Championship team like Elliot, Joey Bosa, Eli Apple, Braxton Miller and company were selected in this year’s NFL Draft. The school had the most players selected in the draft out of any school. Now, Urban Meyer has to find a way to plug in holes that are now left vacant by his star players moving on to bigger and better things. That core over the past four years had a stellar record and won the first National Championship in the playoff era.

If the Buckeyes want to contend for another National Championship it all starts with quarterback J.T. Barrett. Barrett had a great year last year, but it was clouded by a DUI arrest late in the season. He has to stay out of trouble and focus on football as well as his studies Ohio State if he has a shot. Also, the guys that are taking the place of the great core has to step up and play well. If those things align, the Buckeyes could be back in the College Football Playoff contending for another National Championship next year.

 

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