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Buckeye defense halts offense in spring scrimmage

When it rains, it pours, and today’s football scrimmage proved true figuratively and literally for the Buckeye offense, which failed to score a single touchdown. The defense won the scrimmage, 74-62, when heavy rain and lightning caused an abrupt finish.

With no completions and only two first downs in the first seven possessions, the offense couldn’t find its rhythm. The offense gave the ball away four times and mustered just 171 yards on 17 possessions.

Leading the way for the defense was sophomore defensive tackle Jonathan Hankins, who had a tackle for loss, a sack and numerous stops on third and short, where the offense failed four times to convert.

The scrimmage began with kick returns. Sophomore running back Jaamal Berry electrified the crowd with a 95-yard return for a touchdown up the sideline. Jordan Hall also returned a kick back to the 40, and Chris Fields had a return to the 47 yard line.

When the offense took to the field, it began backed up against its own one-yard line. They went three and out under senior quarterback Joe Bauserman, thanks in part to strong pass defense from junior cornerback Travis Howard.

The next offensive set, Berry rumbled for nine yards and had a huge collision with sophomore safety Jamie Wood. Wood left the game shortly after and did not return, saying that his shoulder “popped out.”

Redshirt freshman Taylor Graham continued to put the ball on the money, but numerous drops bogged his stats down to 3-10 for 27 yards. Braxton Miller, the highly touted freshman quarterback, was 2-4 for 22 yards.

The other quarterbacks fared no better, with sophomore Kenny Guiton going 3-7 for 31 yards with one interception, and Bauserman hitting 1-4 for 11 yards, with one interception. Both interceptions were recorded by redshirt freshman cornerback Bradley Roby, and both went through the hands of Corey “Philly” Brown and Berry to reach Roby.

The offense did not find any more luck on the ground. The leading rusher was redshirt freshman Roderick Smith, with six carries for 30 of the offense’s 80 total yards rushing.

The entire defense looked stout, but freshman safety Jeremy Cash might have had the most impressive day. The Florida product had many tackles, including a big hit that jarred the ball loose from Verlon Reed. Dorian Bell recovered it. Cash also broke up several passes.

Senior Florida State transfer Dionte Allen unloaded on Berry from his cornerback position, and sophomore defensive end Melvin Fellows drilled Guiton on a pass rush.

Terrelle Pryor remains limited in practice and threw in sweatpants. Pryor joins suspended players Dan Herron, DeVier Posey, Mike Adams and Solomon Thomas and coach Jim Tressel for the first five games of the upcoming season.

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