The Ohio State Buckeyes have made it through their non-conference season unscathed.
Many thought that the Buckeyes had it too easy in their non-conference games this season. Their only challenges in non-conference play came against the Marquette Golden Eagles, Maryland Terrapins and Notre Dame Fighting Irish. The lone scare for the Buckeyes came against Notre Dame, but they proved how good they truly are in the final few minutes by coming from behind and winning the game. They passed their tests against Marquette and Maryland with flying colors. The real challenges for the Buckeyes will come when they start Big Ten play on Tuesday.
The final non-conference game for the Buckeyes took place Friday night in Columbus against the Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks. From the beginning, it did not seem to be much of a challenge for the Buckeyes, as they dominated the first half and went into halftime with a 41-20 lead. They led the Warhawks by as many as 23 points in the opening half. In the second half, the Buckeyes did not allow the Warhawks to score at all until almost halfway through the half, and only allowed them to score 11 points in the second half to get the 71-31 win.
We may not know how good the Buckeyes really are until they pass the tests they are faced with in Big Ten play. Right now it seems like they are going to rise to whatever challenges they are faced with and have a successful season. Their first Big Ten game will be against the Purdue Boilermakers in West Lafayette. So far they have beaten the teams they should beat and dominated the ones they should dominate, to stay undefeated.
How long can they stay undefeated in Big Ten play? It will certainly be a challenge to stay that way for very long, especially since their first five Big Ten opponents all currently have at least 10 wins. The Buckeyes need to continue to prove themselves and prove that they are one of the best, if not the best, team in the Big Ten.