On one hand, the 10th-ranked Buckeyes have been world-beaters on defense. They held overmatched Akron to three first downs and 69 total yards in a 20-2 victory on Saturday, forcing a redshirt freshman for the Zips, John Stec, to kick 14 punts. He must have slept well.
Then there's the other way to look at the Buckeyes. Through two games, Tressel has almost no idea of what to expect from his offense.
Tailback Chris “Beanie” Wells has taken turns falling down with little contact on one play, then bursting through a seam for big yardage on another. Quarterback Todd Boeckman follows a smart move with a questionable one. The offensive line is porous one minute and the Great Wall of Columbus the next.
And now, with so many of his hopes seemingly resting on quicksand, comes the first big test of the season. The Buckeyes travel to Washington in a game between 2-0 teams that might be a fork in the road for both teams.
“It's a difficult place, a difficult environment,” defensive end Vernon Gholston said. “We'll need to be road warriors now.”
Freshman tailback Brandon Saine, who has scored a touchdown in both of his college games before ever attending a class, sounded like a wary tourist.
“I'm excited about the road trip,” he said. “I've never been out west before.”