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Scarlet Sunrise: Turnovers, suspect calls doom Buckeyes in Fiesta Bowl

Justin Fields-Ohio State-Ohio State football-Buckeyes
Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields and the Buckeyes were devastated after a last-minute turnover in the Fiesta Bowl. (Birm/Lettermen Row)

Scarlet Sunrise

Scarlet Sunrise: Turnovers, suspect calls doom Buckeyes in Fiesta Bowl

Good morning, Ohio State fans, and welcome to the Scarlet Sunrise. Football will always be our focus, but every day we’ll cover news, notes and analysis from across Buckeyes sports. Join us each morning to get caught up on everything you missed in the world of Ohio State football, recruiting, basketball and more.

Missed opportunities, suspect calls doom Buckeyes in Fiesta Bowl

Ohio State had chances. It made plays. But when it seemed like the Buckeyes had their chances, they missed them. And when it seemed like the Buckeyes made plays, the plays were called back due to questionable officiating.

The Buckeyes perfect season and national title hopes came crashing down in Glendale, Arizona on Saturday night when they lost 29-23 to Clemson in the College Football Playoff semifinal at the Fiesta Bowl. Ohio State turned the ball over twice and settled for three field goals in the red zone in the first half. This is certainly a game that will have the Buckeyes wondering “what if” for a long time.

Miss any of the coverage from the desert? We have you covered:

Buckeyes need to recruit Shaun Wade back

The Buckeyes are set to lose nearly their entire secondary with the departures of Jeff Okudah, Damon Arnette and Jordan Fuller. If Shaun Wade leaves, Ohio State’s secondary could be in some trouble. Simply put, keeping Shaun Wade for one more season in Columbus would be huge for the Silver Bullets defense.

Lettermen Row’s Birm broke it down further:

It’s hard to argue against an early run to professional football by Young and Okudah, each of whom appears to be lead-pipe locks to be drafted in the top-five spots of the NFL Draft next spring.

Wade’s impact on the Ohio State defense is much more clear than his NFL projections, and that’s one reason he’s the perfect choice to step into a leadership role in the secondary next year. Ohio State needs Wade to provide some continuity in a defensive backfield that would otherwise be completely turned over. And Wade needs to show NFL talent evaluators that he has the athleticism to line up on and shut down outside receivers.

He’s versatile and tough — that’s not in dispute — but another year in Columbus could give the 6-foot-1, 195-pound Wade a chance to show a skill set that some don’t think he possesses.

If Wade can stick around for one more year, it would be the first win of the 2020 season for Ryan Day and the Buckeyes.

Ohio State basketball loses to West Virginia

For just the second time this season, Ohio State dropped a game.

The Buckeyes played West Virginia in Cleveland, and they were sent back down I-71 Saturday afternoon with a 67-59 loss to the No. 22 Mountaineers. Ohio State built a 6-point lead at halftime, but Ohio native and West Virginia guard Miles McBride scored 21 points to lead the West Virginia upset over the No. 2 Buckeyes, who struggled in the second half, scoring a season-low in points. They also turned the ball over 22 times.

Ohio State will host Wisconsin in its next game, which will be played Friday at 7 p.m.

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Spencer Holbrook

Spencer Holbrook covers Ohio State football and basketball for Lettermen Row. A recent graduate of Ohio University's Scripps School of Journalism, he's in his first year covering the Buckeyes. He was previously the sports editor at Ohio's student newspaper, The Post, where he covered Ohio University football and men's basketball.

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