The Ohio State Buckeyes did the unexpected this season when they went 12-0, running the table in the Big Ten and proving that they are still on top of the conference despite NCAA sanctions levied after the Jim Tressel years.
In 2013, the Buckeyes are again eligible for the postseason, and this team will be hungry for another run at an undefeated season. Looking at the schedule, it is possible.
It won’t come easy, with games against Cal, Michigan and Northwestern all coming on the road. All of the tough games are spread throughout the schedule, though, which will help the Buckeyes prepare as the season moves.
This team knows how to win big and has one of the best coaches in the game leading them in Urban Meyer. Meyer knows how to turn programs into title winners, and this season proves that he still has what it takes to take teams to the top level of college football.
The Buckeyes will return Braxton Miller and a host of other offensive playmakers. Carlos Hyde is another offensive playmaker who is expected to be back for the Buckeyes, making the backfield one of the most dangerous in the country entering 2013.
They also will see some key defenders along the line, but they will lose a lot of talent on defense. Along the defensive line and at corner, the Buckeyes will lose playmakers. Sealing holes up front will be the focus of spring and summer workouts.
Ohio State is doing really well on the recruiting trail with defensive recruits, and Meyer will need them heading into the 2013 season. Players like Mike Mitchell and Trey Johnson may see the field within their first few months on campus for the Buckeyes.
With the talent that is returning and incoming for the Buckeyes, it is hard to pick against this team in 2013. The schedule sets up nicely again for them, and it should equal a number of wins for Urban Meyer’s sophomore season.
It will be tough to overcome the defensive losses and repeat an undefeated run, but the Buckeyes do have a legitimate shot at winning the Big Ten. This conference saw an eight-win team finish with the Big Ten title.
Ohio State would have been the conference's title winner this year and would have boosted the national perception of the Big Ten's talent level.
Look for Urban Meyer to bring another magical season to Columbus in 2013.