Has Ohio State held back in preparation for USC?

Columbus — Jim Bollman couldn’t stop laughing — just another ploy, most likely, to avoid giving up Ohio State’s secrets.

“Now why should I tell you that?” the Buckeyes’ offensive coordinator had answered Wednesday when asked how much of the offense Ohio State had been holding back the first two games of the season in order to surprise USC on Saturday. “I’m not going to divulge the whole game plan, no. I’d like to know their game plan. I’d say there’s a little advantage to that.”
There certainly is. The question is: How far will a team go to throw off a future opponent?
You can find conspiracy theories among fans in Buckeyeland who believe Beanie Wells’ toe injury and subsequent alleged recovery are part of a plot to throw off the No. 1 Trojans. Having your best player fake an injury is probably a bit much.
Yet because of the uncertainty around how much and how effectively Wells will play and exactly how the Buckeyes will or won’t use freshman quarterback Terrelle Pryor, there are a lot more questions about the offense than you’d expect from a team that returned nine offensive starters. As former Auburn coach Terry Bowden sees it, that’s should be part of the plan when a national power opens against teams such as Youngstown State and Ohio.