Buckeyes defense must tighten up

Ohio State knew it would be an adventure on offense early this season.

After all, the Buckeyes lost starting quarterback Terrelle Pryor and had three starters suspended for the first five games.

The Ohio State defense, despite losing seven starters of its own, was supposed to be the pillar on which the offense could lean. Ohio State had proven time and again it could reload on defense, and this year didn't appear to be any different, especially after the Buckeyes blanked Akron in the season opener.

But Toledo is making Ohio State look mortal on defense, and the Rockets have reclaimed the lead 22-21 in the third quarter. Coach Tim Beckman has been fearless with two fourth-down calls in the second half, both of which Toledo converted. Beckman is going for it today, and who can blame the former Ohio State assistant?

This marks the first time Ohio State has allowed more than 20 points to an in-state foe since 1999.

While the Buckeyes remain stout against the run, their personnel losses in the secondary -- Jermale Hines, Chimdi Chekwa and Devon Torrence -- seem to be hurting, as Toledo's passing attack has clicked for 213 yards.

No matter how this one turns out, Ohio State has to be a bit concerned about its defense before next week's trip to Miami.