Last night I watched a replay of last year's Rose Bowl (or this year's, depending how you count them). I came away with two reactions. First, TP did not have that great a game. He gets all the praise but I cannot figure out why. Maybe it is because he has been so mediocre since he took over as starter at OSU that everyone was shocked he looked good at all. But he made maybe three good passes and the rest was a TP scramble here and there and the rest standard TP forgettable plays.
The OSU defense won that game (and it was a much better defense than I remember). They held Oregon to 17 points, an Oregon team that averaged more than double that amount. They also intercepted Masoli late in the first half to prevent a FG and got a FG themselves instead, which is a 6 point swing. TP managed a Tressel well-run team and did a good job managing, that is all.
Second, Oregon's spread gave OSU trouble the entire game. True, OSU won the game so I am not saying we are going to dominate and rip them a new one. But if UM can upgrade its defense over the next year or two to the level it used to be under LC and cut down on the turnovers, we will be very competitive with OSU.