January 15, 2007

So long to the Fun Bunch

It's going to be a brave new world in Columbus next season.

Going into Martin Luther King Day, Jim Tressel and the Buckeyes already knew they were losing senior Heisman winning quarterback Troy Smith and early exit receiver Anthony Gonzalez. Monday they found out they would also be without the services of tailback Antonio Pittman and speedster Ted Ginn Jr., both of whom made themselves eligible for the 2007 NFL draft. The exit of Smith, Pittman, Ginn and Gonzo marks the end of an age in Columbus.

For going on three seasons, Buckeye fans have been pacified by Gonzo's sure hands, awed by Teddy's blazing speed and amazed by Troy's incredible playmaking ability in the clutch. Starting today, fans will have to get used to life after the "Fun Bunch."

That's not to say the Buckeyes can't still have an effective offense next season, but it will certainly have a much different look. The focus will go from a lethal spread offense led by a Heisman Trophy quarterback to a more traditional Woody Hayes offense. Maybe comparing next year's offense to the "three yards and a cloud of dust" offenses of old is pushing it considering the main offensive weapon will be star recruit Chris Wells.

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