Found April 13, 2013 on Fox Sports Ohio:
CINCINNATI - There wasn't the sizzle of last April, when everything with Urban Meyer was new and flashy and creating momentum and buzz was priority. This is and was about sustaining momentum, to a point, but more about taking the next step. This was spring football, emphasis on football. And emphasis on throwing that football, as in the thing Meyer thinks is most important for his team's development right now. Ohio State's spring game Saturday was a business trip. Meyer, Braxton Miller and the Buckeyes came to Cincinnati's Paul Brown Stadium because renovations forced them out of Columbus, and though they made a day of it, Meyer's intent was to make sure Miller might need to ice his throwing shoulder for the trip home. Meyer wanted something resembling a game as an evaluation point, and the one he got was very forgettable. But it featured Miller -- he hit Evan Spencer for 49 yards on the very first play -- and a passing game that's coming along. A rule designed to keep Miller healthy and upright prevented a steady pass rush from hitting him and limited maybe the most dangerous part of his game, but the junior to be showed an improved presence in the pocket and though he still threw a few ducks, he made his share of impressive throws, too. Officially -- at least as official as spring football can be -- Miller was 16-of-25 passing for 217 yards and 2 touchdowns on Saturday. He also ran for a touchdown despite not really being allowed to run. It was a glorified practice. It showed Miller's progress. "If we can figure out the passing game," Meyer said, "I would be disappointed if we're not the best offense in the Big Ten." Expectations and goals are high around the program, and for good reason. Meyer was just as quick to point out that if the Buckeyes don't find a right tackle and receivers who play at a consistently high level, this offense won't be the best of anything. But Miller has plenty of gifts, and spring football at Ohio State was geared around harnessing and polishing them. Miller said he "still (has) some things to fix" but admitted he's getting better "at placing the ball where it needs to be placed" and finding the right targets at the right times. He needs help from his receivers and his line. If he gets it? The Ohio State offense could be very, very dangerous. "Guys last year (in the spring) were just going out hoping they could get open," Miller said. "It was a tough transition...to a new offense. "Where we are now, it's night and day from where we were then." The running game will be there. Miller was restricted Saturday, and Ohio State's top two running backs -- plus senior slot back Jordan Hall -- also didn't play. That was by design as much as it was by caution; Meyer said he wanted "a pass-heavy game...because that's an area we need to get better." On Miller's improvement, Meyer said "fundamentally he's pretty good. He had a couple situations where he went back to his old habits. We can't have that. We have to improve everyone around him." Ohio State played four 10-minute quarters Saturday, mostly for its young players to get full-speed reps and for the 37,643 in attendance. Miller showed improved zip on the ball, and his best throw was probably a floater to Devin Smith that set up the Scarlet team's third touchdown early in the second half. Miller's Scarlet team won, 31-14, not that anyone cares or will remember. Unbeaten a year ago under strange circumstances, the Buckeyes face new pressure and new challenges against another weak schedule. Expectations are high for a reason. Thinking of Miller as a Heisman candidate seems reasonable. He'll be pushed. He'll by surrounded by players who earn their reps. There's a long way to go, for Miller and for this Ohio State team as a whole, but Meyer likes the direction. As for this team's ceiling, Meyer seems as excited as anyone to find out just how high it is. "The offense is much different than it was a year ago," Meyer said. "I wish it would have looked better but when you have five or six starters out, that's what you get. As far as grasping concepts and understanding, we're getting there. "I think we're on track."
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Defense, Miller shine in Buckeyes spring game

Braxton Miller scored three touchdowns, two of them passing and he threw for 217 yards while completing 16 of 25 attempts. That's not a bad outing for the junior signal caller. Problem was, those numbers were rather deceiving as he was sacked a whopping SEVEN times in front of a decent crowd of 37,643 at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati.  All in all Miller's...

OSU's spring game: Five to watch

CINCINNATI - Ohio State is coming to Paul Brown Stadium Saturday for its annual spring game. The 12-0 season of 2012 is officially over. The real fun might just be beginning. Throughout spring football, Urban Meyer has pushed his players the way he always does while warning against expectations being too high. Meyer has said on multiple occasions that his team isn't where it...

Mark May Blasts Ohio State On Twitter, Seems To Miss The Point

At this point, Ohio State fans realize that ESPN analyst Mark May is not a fan of the Buckeyes. He seems to enjoy trolling their fan base at every opportunity he gets, usually sending out most of his hate on Facebook or Twitter. Here’s an example: Right. So May wants to level Buckeyes fans. And we wonder why ESPN is starting to try to gain control of what its employees tweet....

Miller accounts for 3 TDs in Buckeyes' spring game

Braxton Miller threw for two touchdowns and ran for another to lead the Scarlet to a 31-14 victory over the Gray on Saturday in the Ohio State spring game, played before 37,643 in the Cincinnati Bengals' Paul Brown Stadium. The junior was the Big Ten's offensive player of the year last season as the Buckeyes surprised many with a 12-0 season in Urban Meyer's first year...

Ohio State Buck-I-Guy Gets Tow Truck Piggyback Ride From Columbus To Cincinnati For Spring Game

Ohio State football fans stuck in traffic on their way to/from the OSU Spring Game in Cincinnati on Saturday spotted Ohi…

Examining Ohio State's Cincinnati Recruiting

With Ohio State's spring game in Cincinnati on tap for this weekend, we review an earlier look at what has helped and hurt the Buckeyes' recruiting efforts in the Queen City over the years. We talked to former OSU coaches, recruiting coordinators and high school coaches for their views.

Buckeyes take game No. 2

The Nebraska baseball team forced extra innings with a two-out, ninth-inning rally on Saturday against Ohio State, but the Buckeyes scored once in the top of the 11th inning to defeat the Huskers, 6-5, in front of 4,076 fans at Hawks Field.

Washington, defensive line answer critics in Ohio State spring game

(photo courtesy USAToday Sports/Greg Bartram) Never doubt Urban.... Never doubt Urban... Never doubt Urban - those are words to live by in life as a college sports fan and should be on your daily reminder list, especially after what was witnessed on Saturday in Cincinnati as the Scarlet beat the Gray 31-14 in front of over 37,000 fans at Paul Brown Stadium. The traveling Buckeye...

Source: Ohio State safety Orhian Johnson working out for Buccaneers today

Hot News for S Orhian Johnson

Meyer Pleased With Trip, OSU Concludes Spring

The Ohio State football team completed its spring season with a trip to Cincinnati for the spring game. Scarlet downed Gray, 31-14, and afterwards head coach Urban Meyer talked about returning to the Queen City and how he views his team heading into the summer.

Spring Game Rosters Set

Ohio State's spring game is set to kick off Saturday at 1 in Cincinnati's Paul Brown Stadium. Check out which Buckeyes will be on the Scarlet team and which will be on the Gray inside.

Marcelys Jones Rallies the Troops

Marcelys Jones was the first commit to Ohio State's 2014 recruiting class, pledging to the Buckeyes on Christmas morning. The three-star offensive tackle has continued to add offers, but is a recruiting leader for Ohio State.

Springing Ahead: What to Watch for in Ohio State’s Spring Game

It’s hard to believe that the 2013 Spring Game is already upon us. Watching the Buckeye’s basketball team win the Big Ten Tournament and make another successful March Madness run all the way to the Elite 8 was a nice distraction, to say the least. We have one lone Ohio State sporting event to soak in before a long, four and a half month drought. The Spring Game is great because...

Huskers lose series at home

Nebraska dropped two of three against Ohio State over the weekend, a series that was crucial in the Big Ten standings.

Helm Checks Out Two Big Ten Powers

Four-star tight end Daniel Helm took in both Ohio State and Michigan this past weekend, and the Chatham (ILL) Glenwood prospect discussed both visits with FOXSportsNEXT. Helm also listed a top-four, and talked of a time frame for making his choice of schools.
Buckeyes News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.