October 11, 2009

Series by series: UW offense against OSU

Offensively, the Wisconsin football team dominated Ohio State during Sunday's loss to the Buckeyes. UW had twice as many total yards, more than twice as many plays and led the time of possession battle nearly three-to-one.

But, unfortunately for the Badgers, statistics do not directly correlate with points and OSU was able to cash in on some big plays to win 31-13.

Before moving on to Iowa, BadgerBlitz.com takes a look back at every Wisconsin offensive possession. The following is a series by series recap.

First Quarter:

Drive No. 1: Started on own 21 yard line following 47-yard Jon Thoma punt.
Plays: 3
Yards: -5
Result: 61-yard Brad Nortman punt.

Key play: UW tried to open the game with a play action pass, but OSU's Cameron Heyward snuffed it out and sacked Tolzien for a loss of six yards.

Drive No. 2: Started on own 30 yard line following 40-yard Thoma punt.
Plays: 3
Yards: 5
Result: 43-yard Nortman punt.

Key play: Tolzien, under pressure, could not connect with Nick Toon across the middle. Thus, UW was held to another three and out.

Drive No. 3: Started on own 40 yard line following 34-yard Thoma punt.
Plays: 4
Yards: 29
Result: 89-yard Kurt Coleman interception return for touchdown. (7-0 OSU)

Key play: On first and 10, Tolzien tried stepping through a collapsing pocket. But, when the pressure finally got to him, he decided to throw and ill-advised pass down the middle of the field. The ball sailed over his intended target and right into the hands of Coleman. Then, with the entire right sideline open, Coleman returned it for a touchdown to open the scoring.

Drive No. 4: Started on own 21 yard line following kickoff.
Plays: 9
Yards: 38
Result: 41-yard Nortman punt

Key play: Facing third and six just on the cusp of field goal range, Tolzien was sacked once again. This time, Ross Homan came free on a blitz and dropped the UW junior for a four-yard loss that took UW out of field goal range.

Second Quarter:

Drive No. 5: Started on Ohio State 12 yard line following Culmer St. Jean interception.
Plays: 4
Yards: 12
Result: Nine-yard Chris Maragos touchdown run. (7-7)

Key play: Though the offense was handed a gift when Pryor threw an interception deep in his own zone, it couldn't punch the ball in. So, on fourth and seven, UW called a fake field goal and Maragos took care of the rest. He took the snap, hesitated, picked it up and went to his left where he had one player to beat. After giving a little move, Maragos outran Austin Spitler to the corner for the touchdown.

Drive No. 6: Started on own 22 yard line following 48-yard Thoma punt.
Plays: 14
Yards: 45
Result: 50-yard Philip Welch field goal. (10-7 Wisconsin)

Key play: In typical Badger fashion, Wisconsin methodically moved down the field with a heavy dose of run plays. Once they got inside the OSU 30 though, Brian Rolled and Jermale Hines dropped Isaac Anderson for a four-yard loss that ended the drive. Welch, though, gave UW the lead with his 50-yard bomb.

Drive No. 7: Started on own 39 yard line following kickoff. (14-10 OSU)
Plays: 6
Yards: 21
Result: Missed 57-yard field goal.

Key play: With three timeouts and only a handful of yards to go in order to get into field goal range, UW put together a solid drive. But, after running the clock down to five seconds and on fourth down, Welch was unable to connect from 57 yards to end the half.

Third Quarter:

Drive No. 8: Started on own 20 yard line following kickoff.
Plays: 6
Yards: 4
Result: 32-yard Hines interception return for a touchdown. (21-10 OSU)

Key play: Tolzien tried to hit Toon on an out route, but he was unable to fit the ball over the OSU defender in the zone. Hines made a good play on the ball, tipped it to himself and returned it for a touchdown and second defensive score from OSU.

Drive No. 9: Started on own 31 yard line following kickoff.
Plays: 5
Yards: 40
Result: 46-yard Welch field goal. (21-13 OSU)

Key play: Tolzien slipped out of a collapsing pocket but only gained six yards instead of the needed nine to move the chains. Thus, Welch was left with a long field goal.

Drive No. 10: Started on own five yard line following kickoff. (28-13 OSU)
Plays: 16
Yards: 79
Result: Missed 33 yard Welch field goal.

Key play: After Ray Small returned the kickoff for a touchdown, Tolzien and UW responded with a solid drive. However, when Welch, who had been good on the day, missed from 33 yards, it took the wind out of UW's sails.

Fourth Quarter:

Drive No. 11: Started on own 20 yard line following kickoff. (31-13 OSU)
Plays: 5
Yards: 2
Result: 50-yard Nortman punt.

Key play: It seemed to be a recurring problem every time the Badgers started to move the ball. Gabe Carimi was flagged for illegal contact to the face after UW had picked up a first down. The penalty forced UW into a first and 25 situation that it couldn't get out of.

Drive No. 12: Started on own 39 yard line following 36-yard Thoma punt.
Plays: 14
Yards: 43
Result: Turnover on downs

Key play: Though it needed a quick score, the UW offense didn't show much urgency in its nearly five minute drive. Then, instead of kicking a field goal to cut the Buckeyes lead to only two possessions, UW went for out on fourth and goal from the OSU 18 yard line. Tolzien's pass went incomplete and that was a wrap for UW.

Drive No. 13: Started on OSU 49 yard line following 32-yard Thoma punt.
Plays: 4
Yards: -5
Result: Turnover on downs

Key play: With time running out, Tolzien overthrew his intended target on fourth and 15. Then, one Terrelle Pryor kneel down later, the game was over.

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