Alabama Football: A deep dive into CFB’s top 25 for 2020

(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

team. 812. . 2019 Record: 13-1. Previous: . Buckeyes . 2

Ohio State was one heroic Trevor Lawrence performance away from getting to the national championship game against LSU this past season. Some analysts say that the Buckeyes matched up better with the Bengal Tigers than Clemson did. Unfortunately, Ohio State will never find out how they would have fared against the 2019 National Champs.

Ohio State is going to be almost completely different than they were in 2019. They lost impact players at every level on defense starting with All-World defender and top prospect in the 2020 draft, Chase Young. The Buckeyes defense was stifling in 2019 as they locked down opponents seemingly with ease.

On offense, the Buckeyes were no slouches either, as they led the nation in point differential. What will be different in 2020 is the fact that the offense will almost certainly be better than the defense unlike in 2019. Also, OSU will likely be more pass-heavy than they were last year.

Heisman finalist Justin Fields returns to lead OSU’s offense but he will be without his former RB J.K. Dobbins. Losing Dobbins won’t be a huge issue, but the running game could take a hit and more of the running responsibility will fall back on Fields.

The weakness of the 2020 Ohio State squad appears on paper to be their pass defense. They are losing three starting DBs, which obviously hurts pass defense. Also, their pass rush is taking a huge step back with the loss of Young.

They will reload though because of their success in recruiting. So, I expect Ohio State to be contenders again in 2020.

They do have to travel to Eugene, OR in Week 2 to face the Oregon Ducks, but the rest of the non-conference schedule is Bowling Green and Buffalo. Just like Penn State, they miss having Wisconsin and Minnesota from the West on their schedule. Again just like Penn State they get Nebraska and Iowa in their cross-division schedule along with Illinois.

Aside from Penn State, their toughest game will likely be hated rival Michigan, but they get them at home. Penn State will be one of the only tests for the Buckeyes all season. The winner of that game will likely be the division winner and the favorite to make the playoffs.

I would love for this to come true. If so, that would mean an Alabama football vs. Ohio State matchup in the first round of the playoff. Who wouldn’t want to see Dylan Moses vs. Justin Fields? That would be an outstanding game no matter the outcome.