The Suburbanite
  • Guiton guides OSU to mismatch win vs. Florida A&M

  • Kenny Guiton again starred in place of the injured Braxton Miller, setting a school record with six touchdown passes — all in the first half — to lead No. 4 Ohio State to a 76-0 victory against Florida A&M on Saturday.

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  • Another start for Kenny Guiton, another page in Ohio State’s record book for the Buckeyes’ backup quarterback. Maybe another playing time problem for Urban Meyer to figure out.
    Guiton started his second game in a row for injured starter Braxton Miller, and he came out with a strong performance. Guiton threw a single-game record six touchdown passes — all in the first half — as third-ranked Ohio State outclassed FCS opponent Florida A&M 76-0 Saturday.
    In two starts, Guiton has completed 45 of 66 passes for 491 yards and 10 TD passes. He also has led an offense that has scored 128 points in those games. Is Guiton that good or have Ohio State’s opponents been that bad?
    “I don’t know how many snaps he played before our staff got here, but he probably didn’t play any; and it’s not because the (previous) staff was screwing him over,” Meyer said. “He wasn’t very good in a lot of areas. He pushed himself academically, and he’s an exceptional guy. He didn’t do things exceptionally. He was an underachiever. That’s fighting words.”
    Consider Guiton fighting for playing time.
    “He’s an efficient player right now, an incredible manager,” Meyer said. “His time came. He was prepared. It’s not by accident it happened.
    “It’s not because he had the buckeye in his pocket, or his lucky T-shirt. It’s because he worked hard with his position coach to get ready for his opportunity, and boy did he.”
    No worries, though.
    Ohio State does not have a quarterback controversy. Miller was held out because his left sprained knee wasn’t completely healed. Meyer said Miller is still his starting quarterback.
    “Our backup has earned some time,” Meyer said. “I can’t begin to tell you — I’ve been going through some scenarios in my mind — and I don’t know what it is.”
    It wasn’t exactly a clean start, like Meyer wanted. Ohio State started its first drive at the Rattlers’ 30, after a — ahem — 15-yard punt. Guiton was almost picked off on the second play. Two plays after that, he missed a wide-open Corey Brown in the end zone and tried to force a touchdown pass to Jordan Hall.
    Patrick Aiken picked it off about 8 yards deep in the end zone, and for some reason decided to return it.
    “I was caught up in the moment and made a mental error,” Aiken said.
    Hall caused and recovered a fumble and OSU got the ball back with a new set of downs at the FAMU 3. Hall scored on the first play for a 7-0 lead.
    “I didn’t see the fumble because I got hit,” Guiton said. “I got up and saw Jordan with the ball ... that was just another blessing.”
    Page 2 of 2 - Indeed, Guiton seems to be leading a charmed life.
    The Buckeyes went up 13-0 on another one-play scoring drive. That was set up by Brown’s 65-yard punt return. Guiton hit tight end Jeff Heuerman in the right flat on first down, and the 6-foot-5, 252-pounder bullied his way into the end zone.
    FAMU’s mistakes would get worse. Doran Grant blocked a punt and the Buckeyes took over at the A&M 25. In two plays this time, Guiton hit Evan Spencer for an 8-yard TD pass and a 20-0 lead.
    After the opening possession, OSU’s offense ran four plays, and scored on three of them. The Buckeyes scored three touchdowns in less than a minute of game clock time.
    About halfway through the second quarter, Guiton displayed his best quality. He looked right and drew Rattlers safety John Ojo into that corner of the end zone. It opened up a seam in the middle of the end zone and Chris Fields was all alone.
    “We’re just so much more comfortable in this offense,” said Spencer, who caught four passes for 50 yards and two touchdowns. “We’re reacting instead of thinking so much.”
    Devin Smith caught another touchdown pass, his fourth of the year. He also dropped a pass in the end zone.
    But the Buckeye offense has come out hot in all four nonconference games. They have had 22 scoring drives in the first half, 21 of them going for touchdowns.
    OSU’s 603 yards makes it two straight games of more than 600 yards of offense. To be fair, Cal has one of the country’s worst-ranked defenses, and FAMU is an FCS team.
    Are the opponents that bad, or is Meyer’s second-year offense finally hitting its stride?
    “We’re facing a Big Ten defense next week,” Meyer said. “We expect a lot. The expectation level on offense is real high. We have some weapons on offense. I kind of like where we’re at. The best way to think about it is checkers. We have some pieces on the board. I like the checkers we have right now.”

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