Ohio State football: How many carries will Buckeyes give running backs against Michigan State?

All week long, our Land of 10 reporters following the Buckeyes will address pressing questions on the mind of the Ohio State fan base with our new daily feature. To ask Austin Ward a question, follow along on Twitter and pass along a topic right here. Then check back Monday through Friday as we dive into the Ohio State Question of the Day. Go here to see all of our previous answers.

Put me down for the over on that total. And I think J.K. Dobbins should get enough against Michigan State to clear that mark by himself. Truthfully, if Dobbins and Mike Weber don’t get at least that many touches, the Buckeyes could be in trouble again and the Big Ten title hopes may well be in jeopardy.

As mentioned earlier in the week, when I previously advocated for Dobbins to get more involved after getting just 6 rushing attempts at Iowa, there have been valid reasons in previous games why he wasn’t as much of a factor as perhaps he could or should have been for the Buckeyes. But when it comes to physical matchups with high stakes in a conference game, more often than not the outcome is going to be decided by who has the more powerful rushing attack. Even with spread offenses and passing numbers going up around the country, college football usually comes down to being able to run the football ― particularly, of course, in the Big Ten.

For Ohio State, that should never be a problem in the first place. Dobbins is one of the most electrifying young players in the nation and looks more than capable of adding his name to the illustrious list of tailbacks the program has produced by the time he’s done. Weber might not be the starter anymore, but he rushed for 1,000 yards as a freshman and can play an invaluable role in passing downs or short-yardage situations. And while Ohio State still needs to add more depth on the offensive line, that unit has clearly improved since a year ago and relishes the challenge of opening up holes for the rushers and winning battles in the trenches.

Quite simply, the Buckeyes under Urban Meyer have had a championship-worthy ground game each season. They do again in 2017, just as long as they remember to use it.

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